Food safety is not just for humans. Animals need to have safe food as well.
At least 50 pets have fallen ill to date and 12 dogs have died due to liver failure / toxicity in Victoria. The state’s Agriculture department has issued a statewide alert over raw dog meat.
The common link is a knackery in Gippsland, and infection has been ruled out after an investigation.
Agriculture Victoria has issued a statewide alert over frozen or fresh raw dog meat brought between May 31 and July 3 from Gippsland, after another three dogs died from liver toxicity.
Although it has not yet been confirmed that this meat is the cause of the liver failure, each dog that has fallen ill was linked to it.
Agriculture Victoria has warned pet owners to immediately contact their pet if their animal is showing signs of; Reduced appetite, increased thirst, vomiting or yellowing around the eyes and gums.
More than a decade ago the Australian Veterinary Association (AVA) set up a system called Petfast which triggers a notification to vets about issues. This alert has now gone out on the system.
AVA spokeswoman Doctor Melanie Latter said; “The AVA has been calling for better regulation of the pet food industry for many years. We strongly recommend that there should be regulatory mechanisms in place for mandatory recall and investigation of adverse events that are associated with pet food.”
The Pet Food Industry Association of Australia (PFIAA) is in support of this call for there to be mandatory pet food standards for both domestic and imported pet food.
PFIAA executive manager Carolyn Macgill said; “Our goal is for mandatory rather than voluntary standards and recall protocols to be established for all pet food manufacturers and marketers in Australia.”
Standards for pet food, including food safety, and how they would be developed and implemented has been under review for some time and it will be the responsibility of state and territory governments to put them in place.