A Philadelphia woman says her dog died after eating tainted dog food treats (Bestro Chicken Jerky Strips) bought from Wal-Mart.
Wal-Mart has quietly pulled the made in China dog treat from its stores named Bestro Chicken Jerky Strips. There has been no announcement to the public as of yet. It is also uncertain of how many tainted bags of treats there may still be out among consumers.
A recall has not been issued. There has not been any information on FDA’s website. Wal-Mart has told consumers if they have purchased Bestro Chicken Jerky Strips, they can return them for a full refund.
Kate Collins said it is hard to talk about what happened. Bella, her two-year-old Chihuahua, died suddenly on July 31 after eating Bestro Chicken Jerky Strips. Collins said that Bella died within a week after eating the treats. Her other dogs did not receive the same treats and were unaffected.
Bella’s owner had the animal hospital do an autopsy and they found that Bella died of a massive bacterial infection. The veterinarians suspected it was caused by E. coli or Salmonella.
â€œThe vet said that, going by her autopsy, it could have been the treats,â€ Collins said.
â€œThe dog was presented to our hospital on July 27 for vomiting. She deteriorated rapidly over three days even with aggressive treatment. We suspected an intestinal virus at first, but when she continued to do poorly, we thought she had an obstruction due to a foreign body,â€ Jody Hoffman [Bella’s veterinarian] said.
Before the veterinarians were able to perform surgery, Bella died.
Hoffman said Bella developed hypothermia and sepsis. After the autopsy was performed, she realized that her first guess was incorrect.
She found an enlarged liver with round margins and no foreign body. Bella’s colon was a purple-back color. She said the symptoms and lesions were supportive of enteritis caused by a toxic bacteria.
Collins bought the treats at a Wal-Mart store in Boothwyn, Pennsylvania. It took her several days until a manager finally spoke to her about the situation.
She said the jerky strips were the only thing that was different in Bella’s diet. The chihuahua ate one jerky strip a day over a three-day period from July 20-22. After that, Bella began to stop eating. She had diarrhea, was vomiting, and her health began to deteriorate.
The company has not disclosed how many consumer complaints that they have received. A news station is reporting that there are similar stories from consumers across the nation.
Wal-Mart has issued a statement saying it cares about their customers and their pets, and has ordered the dog food treats removed from store shelves.
In a statement to a local newspaper, Wal-Mart said it directed all its locations to remove â€œall recalled Chicken Jerky Strips from Import-Pingyang Pet Product Co. and Chicken Jerky from Shanghai Bestro Trading from shelves on July 26.â€ The company also put a computerized block on the products, so customers could not be purchase the products.
The company also added that it would work with the supplier to â€œassure that the highest safety standards are met.â€
Wal-Mart has also offered to reimburse Collins for up to $2,000. She said it is not about the money and that amount doesn’t even come close to covering the emotional loss. Collins does not understand why Wal-Mart is not making a public announcement. She wants other pet owners to know about the tainted dog food treats.
When we looked at online boards and forums, we found various customer complaints as early as 2006 about dogs becoming ill or dying from eating Bestro’s Chicken Jerky Strips.