ODA Issues Health Alert That Urges Caution When Handing Pet Food

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The Ohio Department of Agriculture issues a health alert urging consumers to be cautious when handing pet foods after Diamond Pet Foods’ expended recall Thursday.   

On April 10, 2012, Diamond Pet Food issued a recall of limited number of dry dog food bags. April 26, the recall expended to include another dog food —Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover’s Soul. According to ODA’s Consumer Protection Laboratory, the pet food was contaminated with Salmonella.  

People usually contract a Salmonella infection by intake of food or water with Salmonella contamination, but people can be infected by touching the pet food, pets or even infected people in this case.

ODA Laboratory Director, DR. Beverly Byrum said, “An infection can occur by putting objectives or fingers that have touched a contaminated product, such as pet food, into the mouth or by touching a pet or, in extreme cases, a person, that is infected.”

Anyone who exhibits signs of a Salmonella infection should receive healthcare. Signs of infection include fever and gastrointestinal symptoms such as nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, or abdominal pain.  

Pets that have consumed food with Salmonella contamination may also be ill.

Signs of infection in a pet include decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. The treatment is also necessary, if pets are exhibiting these signs.

However, it is possible that healthy pets are contaminated with Salmonella without exhibiting any sign of infection.

“They can still infect other animals or humans.” Dr. Byrum said.

People should limit their contact with their pets and thoroughly wash hands or any objectives that come in contact with animal, if their pets have consumed any of the recalled products.

Salmonella is an organism that can cause illness in a person who eats a food item contaminated with it; especially, those people with relatively weak immune systems such as young children and elderly people.