In late July 2019, it was reported that 93 people in the U.S. were infected by salmonella. The cause: pig ear dog treats from Pet Supplies Plus stores. The large nationwide retailer announced a recall when 45 people were infected, but by the time news of the salmonella warning had spread, twice as many people had been infected by the dog treats. The products were kept in open bins in the stores in states across the country, within easy reach of shoppers, and even their dogs and kids.
Pet Supplies Plus has more than 400 locations across 33 states. People who reported the infection spanned at least 13 different states. The retailer said in a statement, “Testing by the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development revealed that aging bulk pig-ear product in one of our stores tested positive for salmonella.”
If infected, salmonella can cause both humans and dog to experience diarrhea, fever, and stomach cramps. At least 20 people have been hospitalized from this outbreak, but the source remains unknown.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warn anyone who thinks they may have purchased one of the pig ear dog treats to dispose of them immediately.
Consumers with pets have been on higher alert in recent months following a warning that more than a dozen brands of pet food may be linked to a spike in heart disease among dogs. This latest salmonella outbreak may have dog owners thinking twice about where and what food they’re purchasing for their pets.