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Pennsylvania Health Department Warns Consumers About Dog Food Salmonella Risk

Saturday, August 25, 2007 General News J E 4
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HARRISBURG, Pa., Aug. 24 Department of Healthofficials continue to warn customers about the importance of proper handlingof pet food as Food and Drug Administration (FDA) tests confirm the presenceof salmonella in two brands of dog food. This reminder comes after an Aug. 21voluntary recall of select Red Flannel Large Breed Adult Formula and KrasdaleGravy dry dog food by Mars Petcare US. These products were produced in thecompany's Everson, PA, plant.

These recalls are due to contamination of finished product with SalmonellaSchwarzengrund, the same species of salmonella that has caused 25 cases ofhuman illness in Pennsylvania since the beginning of 2006. Laboratoryinvestigations found that the fingerprint pattern of the SalmonellaSchwarzengrund strain in the human cases and the pattern found in the recalledpet food are the same.

Based on the low number of human illnesses over a 20-month time period, itappears that the overall risk associated with dry pet food is low. Thedepartment has received no specific complaints of human illness related to thetwo recalled products. The department is in the process of investigatingwhether other products may be associated with the human illnesses.

The Department of Health advises consumers that pet food should not beconsidered sterile and any pet food product could potentially be a source forhuman illness. Regardless of what pet food you are serving to your pet, it isimportant to follow storage and handling recommendations issued in theDepartment of Health's Aug. 10 press release, especially when there areinfants, young children or people in poor health in the home.

The Department of Health will continue to work with pet food companies andwith state and federal regulatory officials to reduce the risk of illnessassociated with pet foods.

CONTACT: Claudine Battisti(717) 787-1783

SOURCE Pennsylvania Office of the Governor
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