October 30, 2015 | Erin | 10 Comments More Bad News Since 2007 jerky pet treats made in China from chicken, duck and sweet potatoes were determined to be responsible for large numbers of illness and death. It has been estimated that approximately 5,000 complaints were received related to the treats not being safe for pets and it is possible that over 1,000 deaths were the result. The majority of the illness was kidney, liver or urinary disease. The pets that consumed the tainted treats became sick within hours. Bleeding in the stomach and kidney failure were to blame for many of the pets’ deaths. What Was Not Done Warnings, not actual recalls, were issued by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration based on the complaints that they received to advise that the jerky treats may not be safe for pets. After 6 years of research, the FDA was no closer to determining what had caused the illness of these pets. The locations in China where the jerky treats were made were visited and volumes of tests performed, but these actions brought them no closer to an answer. The FDA eventually removed some products from store shelves and recalls were issued by some companies, after tests showed up to 6 drugs in certain jerky products. Consumers were cautioned to check the labels of the foods that were purchased for their pets, but unfortunately, made in the USA does not guarantee what countries the ingredients came from. Of particular concern was chicken jerky products. Australia joined in with possible illness in dogs after consuming chicken jerky treats in which a recall connected the products to China. If a pet owner choose to continue to give their pets chicken jerky treats, they were cautioned to do so sparingly and to watch for vomiting, diarrhea, increased thirst or urination and decreased appetite or activity. These symptoms could occur within hours to days after the treats were consumed and if seen, to contact a veterinarian and the FDA. I know for me, the jerky treat warnings opened my eyes to what is not safe for my pets. I have not purchased a jerky product for my dogs in many years, no matter where the label states that it was made.