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Company recalls raw chicken, salmon dog food for Listeria risk

Northwest Naturals of Portland, OR, is recalling its frozen, raw chicken and salmon dog food chubs from retailers after random government testing showed Listeria monocytogenes contamination.

Pets that eat the food and pet owners who handle it are at risk of Listeria infection. Also, utensils, pet bowls and counters or other surfaces or cloths that come into contact with the dog food can become contaminated with Listeria bacteria.

The recalled dog food is no longer in the hands of distributors, according to the the company recall posted on the FDA’s website. However, inspectors in Michigan were able to buy some of the raw pet food recently at a “specialty pet store.”

“The product passed lab testing on Dec. 22, 2016, and was sold over one year ago to distributors (in six states) on or before Jan. 23, 2017,” according to the company’s recall notice.  Those states were California, Washington, Texas, Michigan, Georgia, and Rhode Island.

Because the 5-pound packages of raw food were sold frozen, there is concern that people and retailers may still have unused portions. The best-by date is Aug. 22 this year and is displayed on the dog food packages as “082218” printed in a white square on the label.

The recalled Northwest Naturals raw chicken and salmon dog food can be identified by the date code and the UPC number 0 87316 38440 6.

As of the posting of the recall notice, no pet or human illnesses had been confirmed in relation to the Northwest Naturals dog food.

Anyone who has handled the recalled dog food and developed symptoms of Listeria infection should seek medical attention and tell their doctors about the possible exposure to the pathogen.

It can take up to 70 days for symptoms of Listeria infection to develop after exposure, so people should monitor themselves and their pets in the coming weeks for symptoms of infection.

In people, symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever. Listeria infections are particularly dangerous for pregnant women, the elderly, children and people with compromised immune systems.

Anyone who has had the recalled product in their homes is urged to clean and sanitize any freezers, refrigerators, containers or utensils that may have come into contact with it. Listeria monocytogenes can live on surfaces and survive freezing temperatures for long periods of time.

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