Pets

'Do not feed your dog the product': There could be listeria in the food

K9 Natural announced a recall of four batches of its K9 Natural Frozen Chicken feast over the possibility of listeria. The batches were imported to the United States in June 2017.
K9 Natural announced a recall of four batches of its K9 Natural Frozen Chicken feast over the possibility of listeria. The batches were imported to the United States in June 2017. Miami Herald File

A dog food company has announced a recall of K9 Natural Frozen Chicken Feast because of possible listeria contamination.

In a Saturday afternoon e-mail to The Miami Herald, K9 Natural said the company was notified April 5 that a retail sample from a 2.2-pound bag tested by the Colorado Department of Agriculture had listeria.

The New Zealand company's website post said the recall covers four batches that came to the United States in June 2017, then went to distributors in Texas, California, Pennsylvania, Washington and Colorado. The post didn't state the numerous distributor-to-retailer paths, so bags in the recall could have been sent to pet retail stores anywhere in the United States.

K9 Natural Frozen Chicken Feast 2.2-pound bags involved are batch No. 170517 and have an expiration date of Nov. 17, 2018. The 11-pound bags recalled are batch No. 150517 with expiration date of Nov. 15, 2018; batch No. 160517 with an expiration date of Nov. 16, 2018; and batch No. 170517 with an expiration date of Nov. 17, 2018.

"If you have purchased K9 Natural Frozen Chicken Feast displaying any of these batch numbers and best before dates, please DO NOT FEED YOUR DOG THE PRODUCT," K9 Natural's website declares. "We ask that you return the product (even if partially consumed) as soon as possible to your nearest K9 Natural retailer for a full refund or replacement with an alternative K9 Natural product that is unaffected."

A listeria contamination can cause a pet to suffer from diarrhea, fever, anorexia, muscle or respiratory problems. Humans can get listeria by handling food with listeria or surfaces the food has touched that haven’t been well cleaned. Pregnant women, newborns, senior citizens and people with compromised immune systems are most vulnerable. The Centers for Disease Control says 1,600 people get listeria each year in the United States and 260 die from it.

Those with questions can call K9 Natural at 888-345-4680, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and this Saturday and Sunday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.. You can also email the company at info@k9natural.com.

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Compared to the salmonella/listeria recall parade of February and March, April has been calm for the pet food industry.

One food executive told the Miami Herald that the FDA's inspection cycles on dog food are cyclical, so these recalls tend to come in clumps. Darwin's Pet Food, which received a clean-up-or-else FDA warning letter on April 3, points out that the FDA has a zero tolerance policy for naturally occurring bacteria in pet food.

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