There has been a drastic increase in pet food recalls recently, some because of odd chemicals present while others seem to have been prepared improperly. Despite the cause, it all comes down to the fact that food can sometimes be dangerous to dogs.
Sad as it sounds (especially since those pups love to eat), we have to be cautious when it comes to feeding our dogs the right food. What can you do though? What ways can you prepare yourself so you and your pup can steer clear of any food that isn’t nutritional at all?
Get on a mailing list
Dog groups and forums are a great and usually fun way to start. Pet food Industry.com (http://www.petfoodindustry.com) is a site completely focused on maintaining quality information concerning any pet foods and their manufacturers for the public eye to see. Many of these sites offer pet owners and lovers the ability to sign up for regular updates which contain health and safety information. Signing up on a couple of choice sites can definitely give you a heads-up when your dog’s health is concerned.
Surf for information
Forums are a great place to start, and often the source where recalls usually raise the most attention before there have even been any initial recall movements. You have the opportunity to talk with other people that may have had trouble with certain brands or food products, which may give you an advantage before the situation escalates.
Unfortunately, there are not any apps presently designed to update pet food recalls. While many sites broadcast that they have all your pet source needs in a single app, this growing concern has yet to emerge into the world of smartphone applications. Seeing as how the increase in recalls have drastically risen, it would be helpful to get an instant update while we’re shopping for our four-legged friends, the need for such an option is a must for the future.
Find a source that you can trust
Many pet friendly sites have their own forums and listings that will focus on the current situations of pet foods, products, and medications. It can be difficult to keep track of them all, so you’ll want to find one that seems to focus on your choice products that you currently use or may eventually use.
The FDA does list certain recalled food products, even animal related that may or may not pose health dangers to people and animals. Keep in mind that only about 10% of all imported products are checked, making recalls difficult to catch before they pose a danger. However, these lists will help you and your dog avoid problems that are on the rise or may potentially be a threat to your dog’s well-being.
• Class 1 Exposure to the product may be irreversibly dangerous to health. It is very bad, and if you see this next to any pet food products, avoid handling them at all.
• Class 2 Exposure to a product may cause medical conditions that are reversible or temporary. If you or your dogs have had contact, visit the veterinarian to ensure your dog’s health isn’t at risk.
• Class 3 Exposure isn’t likely to cause any health conditions. Under this listing, many products are usually voluntarily recalled because the quality was poor or there is a possible health threat.
As with any recalled item, its best to either get rid of it or send it back to the manufacturer as requested.
Look at the bigger picture
There may be some that are voluntary, so keep an eye out for those since they may not show up on all forums. If you’re at the grocery store, and it just so happens that all of a single brand is off the shelf, then that is something suspicious that you may want to look into.
Some product sources may be responsible for more than just dangerous or poor quality products. If there seems to be problems with certain food stuffs, such as beef, corn, rice, or chicken, you should be concerned about any product that may contain any variations of them.
There have even been reports of people that get sick from simply handling their pet’s food, such as the recent increase in salmonella poisoning sourced from certain dog foods. This is happening from simply handling a product, not necessarily consuming it. So keep in mind that if it is dangerous for your dog, it can also be dangerous for you or anyone else who handles it.
As your dog’s owner and provider, it’s up to you to provide a healthy diet that won’t cause them any harm. Take a few moments a day to check your email for updates or even scan what’s popular on the internet to spot any dangers your dog’s diet might pose.