Attention all pet parents!

By Melissa Locker
January 13, 2021
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If you have Sportmix pet food on your shelves, you may want to throw it out.

Two weeks ago, the brand's manufacturer, Midwestern Pet Foods, Inc. ordered a recall of certain batches of its Sportmix brand dog and cat foods. Now they are expanding that recall after at least 70 dogs died and more than 80 fell ill after eating Sportmix food. 

The original recall went into effect after the U.S. Food & Drug Administration received reports of eight pups that fell ill after eating Sportmix dog food, and nearly 30 dogs that died. Now, the FDA reports that the company has expanded the recall to include all of their pet food—both dog and cat food— that contain corn and was manufactured in its Oklahoma plant. The affected pet food was distributed to online retailers and to stores nationwide, including across the South.

According to Texas news outlet, KETK, the recalled Sportmix pet food products have an expiration date on or before July 9, 2022, and include "05" in the date/lot code. For the full list of recalled products click here.

The tragedy seems to stem from something called aflatoxin, which the FDA says is "a toxin produced by the mold Aspergillus flavus, which can grow on corn and other grains". The toxin most likely got into the Sportmix pet food from the corn used to make the food. Pets are especially susceptible to the toxin because their diets don't tend to vary. They eat the same pet food for every meal, every day. Sportmix is not the first pet food to be recalled for aflatoxin. Late last year, Sunshine Mills recalled multiple brands of pet food for the same reason. (Check the full list of brands here to make sure they are not still on your shelves.)

If your pet eats Sportsmix food, symptoms of aflatoxin poisoning include sluggishness, loss of appetite, vomiting, jaundice, and/or diarrhea. If you think your pet may have been exposed, you may report suspected cases to the FDA by clicking this link and filling out a report. And of course, check in with your vet.