Aflatoxin Poisoning in Pets: What You Need to Know

Midwestern Pet Foods, Inc., of Evansville, IN is expanding its December 30, 2020 voluntary recall of certain dog and cat food products produced in our Chickasha Operations Facility to include all dog and cat pet food products made with corn products because those products may contain aflatoxin levels which exceed acceptable limits. Products were distributed nationally to online distributors and retail stores nationwide. Midwestern Pet Foods is expanding its voluntary recall out of an abundance of caution to help protect the health and safety of pets.

Pets that eat food containing unsafe levels of aflatoxins can develop aflatoxin poisoning. Pets are highly susceptible to aflatoxin poisoning because, unlike people, who eat a varied diet, pets generally eat the same food continuously over extended periods of time. If a pet's food contains aflatoxins, the toxins could accumulate in the pet's system as they continue to eat the same food. Aflatoxin poisoning can also occur if a pet eats moldy corn, grains, peanuts, or other aflatoxin contaminated food.

Pets experiencing aflatoxin poisoning may have symptoms such as sluggishness, loss of appetite, vomiting, jaundice (yellowish tint to the eyes or gums due to liver damage), and/or diarrhea. In severe cases, this toxicity can be fatal. In some cases, pets may suffer liver damage but not show symptoms.

There is no evidence to suggest pet owners who handle products containing aflatoxin are at risk; however, pet owners should always wash their hands after handling pet food. Pet owners should stop feeding their pets the recalled products listed below:

Retailers and distributors should immediately pull recalled lots from their inventory and shelves and contact Midwestern Pet Foods Consumer Affairs at 800-474-4163, ext. 455 from 7AM to 4PM Central Time, Monday through Friday, or email info@midwesternpetfoods.com for additional information. Do not sell or donate the recalled products. If possible, contact consumers who have purchased the recalled products.

If you believe your pet is sick from a foodborne illness or your pet is experiencing a health-related issue that could be associated with pet food, consult your veterinarian, and report the issue to MDARD's Animal Feed Safety Program at 800-292-3939.

More information about the recent Aflatoxin outbreak, including pictures of the affected product can be found on the FDA website or at Michigan.gov/MDARD-Feed.