The Food and Drug Administration is alerting pet owners about high levels ofaflatoxin in some pet foods after 28 dogs reportedly died and eight otherswere sickened.

The food containing the toxin has been identified as certain Sportmix productsmanufactured by Midwestern Pet Foods. The products were voluntarily recalledby the company on Wednesday

The FDA and the Missouri Department of Agriculture are working with themanufacturer to determine whether more products contain high levels of thetoxin. The FDA said the investigation is ongoing and the “scope of the recallmay expand as new information becomes available.”

Aflatoxin is produced by the Aspergillus flavus mold, the FDA said. It cangrow on grains used as ingredients in pet food, and when high levels ofaflatoxin are consumed, it can cause illness or death in pets.

Pets poisoned by aflatoxin can display symptoms that include sluggishness,jaundice — a yellowish tint in the eyes or gums caused by liver damage — lossof appetite, vomiting or diarrhea, according to the FDA.

Even if a pet is not displaying any symptoms of aflatoxin poisoning, the FDArecommends that pet owners who have pets that have eaten the affected productscontact their veterinarian — as it can cause long-term liver damage.

While the FDA says there is no evidence that pet owners who have handled theaffected food are at risk of aflatoxin poisoning, it recommends that theyalways wash their hands after handling pet food.

The following dry pet foods have been flagged for recall:

Sportmix Energy Plus, 50-pound bag

  • Exp 03/02/22/05/L2
  • Exp 03/02/22/05/L3
  • Exp 03/03/22/05/L2

Sportmix Energy Plus, 44-pound bag

  • Exp 03/02/22/05/L3

Sportmix Premium High Energy, 50-pound bag

  • Exp 03/03/22/05/L3

Sportmix Premium High Energy, 44-pound bag

  • Exp 03/03/22/05/L3

Sportmix Original Cat, 31-pound bag

  • Exp 03/03/22/05/L3

Sportmix Original Cat, 15-pound bag

  • Exp 03/03/22/05/L2
  • Exp 03/03/22/05/L3

Pet owners can report suspected illnesses to the FDA electronically throughits safety reporting portal or by calling the state consumer complaintcoordinator. The FDA also offers a guide with steps to report a pet foodcomplaint.

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