Salmonella Prompts Recall of Merrick Petcare Doggie Wishbone Treats

Merrick Pet Care, Inc. of Amarillo, Texas just issued a recall of a single lot of its Doggie Wishbone pet treat over concerns that the pet treats are potentially contaminated with the deadly Salmonella pathogen, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) just announced.

The recall involves one lot of Doggie Wishbone pet treats with item number 29050, UPC 2280829050, Lot 11031, and a Best By date of 30 Jan 2013.

According to the FDA, 248 cases of this lot were manufactured and shipped to distributors in 10 states; the involved distributors have been advised. No additional Merrick Pet Care products are involved in this recall and no other Merrick brand products are involved.

Foodborne pathogens can be dangerous, sometimes deadly, leaving sufferers with food poisoning symptoms that range from gastrointestinal upsets to serious life-long health issues. Consumption of food contaminated with the Salmonella bacteria can cause salmonellosis, one of the most common bacterial foodborne illnesses. Salmonella infections can be life threatening, especially to those with compromised immune systems, such as infants, the elderly, and persons with HIV infection or who are undergoing chemotherapy.

Salmonella can affect animals and there is also a risk to people who handle Salmonella-contaminated pet products. People handling the treats can become infected with Salmonella, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having touched the chews or surfaces exposed to the tainted chews. Consumers should dispose of the recalled chews safely by securing them in a covered trash receptacle to ensure other animals and wildlife cannot access the tainted product.

Healthy people infected with salmonellosis should monitor themselves for nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping, and fever. In some cases, Salmonella can result in more severe reactions, such as arterial infections, endocarditis, arthritis, muscle pain, eye irritation, and urinary tract problems.

Pets suffering from Salmonella infections may be lethargic and may also have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting. Some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever, and abdominal pain. Sometimes pets can appear healthy, but can be carriers of the dangerous pathogen and can infect other people and animals. If your pet has consumed the recalled chews and experiences any of these symptoms, contact your veterinarian immediately.

Merrick Pet Care is advising consumers who have purchased the recalled Doggie Wishbone with the lot code 11031 are urged to return the unused portion to the place of purchase for a full refund. Consumers with questions may contact Merrick Pet Care at 1.800.664.7387, Monday through Friday, from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Central Standard Time (CST).

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