FDA pet jerky update indicates decline in reported incidents, but still no identifiable cause.

  • Since 2007, FDA has been investigating a series of complaints of illnesses in pets associated with the consumption of jerky pet treats.  Many of the reports involve products imported from China.  As of December 31, 2015, FDA has received approximately 5,200 complaints of illnesses associated with pet jerky consumption, including more than 1,140 canine deaths.  Over the years, FDA has been issuing updates regarding the status of the investigation.
  • In FDA’s most recent update, the Agency indicates that reported cases have been on the decline in recent years.  Unfortunately, FDA still has not identified the root cause of these illnesses.
  • FDA has explained the challenges associated with its ongoing investigation into the pet jerky problem, which include the lack of a centralized outbreak database for pets, breed-specific variables, and the lack of adequate post-mortem information in many cases.  Despite these challenges, FDA continues to devote resources to its investigation.  In the meantime, the Agency continues to caution pet owners that jerky pet treats are not required for a balanced diet and encourages pet owners to consult with veterinarians if they notice certain symptoms in their pets.