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FDA NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release: January 14, 2010

Media Inquiries: Ira Allen 301-796-5349, ira.allen@fda.hhs.gov
Consumer Inquiries: 888-INFO-FDA

FDA Health Alert for Merrick Beef Filet Squares Dog Treats Packaged and
Distributed by Merrick Pet Care
Products may be contaminated with Salmonella

The U. S. Food and Drug Administration is warning consumers not to use
Merrick Beef Filet Squares for dogs distributed by Merrick Pet Care with a
package date of "Best By 111911" because the product may be contaminated
with Salmonella.

The product was distributed nationwide through retail stores and Internet
sales.

Although no illnesses associated with these products have been reported,
the FDA is advising consumers in possession of these products not to
handle or feed them to their pets.
In December 2009, the FDA conducted routine testing of Merrick Beef Filet
Squares and detected a positive finding for Salmonella. A follow-up
inspection found deficiencies in the packaging and manufacturing
processes.
Salmonella can affect both humans and animals. People handling dry pet
treats can become infected with Salmonella, especially if they have not
thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with the treats or any
surfaces exposed to these products. Consumers should dispose of these
products in a safe manner by securing them in a covered trash receptacle.
Healthy people infected with Salmonella may experience some or all of the
following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea,
abdominal cramping and fever. Although rare, Salmonella can result in more
serious ailments including arterial infections, endocarditis (inflammation
of the lining of the heart), arthritis, muscle pain, eye irritation, and
urinary tract symptoms. Consumers exhibiting these signs after having
contact with this product should contact their health care provider
immediately.
Pets with Salmonella infections may become lethargic and have diarrhea or
bloody diarrhea, fever and vomiting. Some pets may experience only a
decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. Infected, but otherwise
healthy pets can be carriers and infect other animals or humans. If your
pet has consumed any of the affected product or is experiencing any of
these symptoms, contact your veterinarian immediately.

The affected Merrick Beef Filet Squares were packaged in a 10-ounce green,
red and tan re-sealable plastic bag. The "best by" date is imprinted on
the top portion of the bag, which is torn off when the bag is opened. The
FDA recommends that consumers who are unable to determine the "best by"
date discontinue use of the product.
Consumers can report complaints about FDA-regulated pet food and pet treat
products by calling the consumer complaint coordinator in their area.
Please see
http://www.fda.gov/AnimalVeterinary/SafetyHealth/ReportaProblem/ucm182403.htm
for additional information.

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