BREAKING NEWS: Natural Instinct has announced a voluntary recall of its “natural” wild venison cat food after around 30 animals and at least two of their owners were infected with a deadly strain of tuberculosis.
According to the Independent, red flags were raised by veterinary scientists at the University of Edinburgh who noticed that dozens of cats had been struck by bovine tuberculosis (bTB).
Some of the ingredients were not inspected in line with EU requirements. The absence of inspection means the safety of the product cannot be confirmed and may therefore carry a potential risk.
The food was tainted with bacteria commonly associated with spreading TB in cattle. It can also be passed along to other animals like rodents and deer, and in this case, humans.
“We found circumstantial evidence that these cases of TB in cats were linked to a particular brand of raw food diet,” Professor Danièlle Gunn-Moore, of the University of Edinburgh’s Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies, told the Independent. “Not all animals that are infected with the bacteria will develop disease but we would encourage owners with concerns about their pets to get them checked by their local vet.”
What is being done?
Natural Instinct is recalling the above product. Point-of-sale notices will be displayed in all retail stores that are selling this product. These notices explain to customers why the product is being recalled and tell them what to do if they have bought the product. Please see the attached notice.
“Raw meat diet could be good for cats, in theory, but there is a clear risk of infection so checks are vital,” wrote Gunn-Moore in her report of the outbreak. “It’s not just bTB – there’s also a risk of toxoplasmosis, salmonella and other pathogens.”
What can you do?
If your cat shows any of the following symptoms of TB, please contact your veterinarian immediately:
- Weight loss
- Polydipsia (increased thirst)
- Polyuria (frequent urination)
- Wet cough (may cough up blood)
- Labored breathing
- Shallow breathing
- Skin lesions
If you have bought the above product, do not feed it to any pets. Instead return it to the store from where it was bought for a full refund.
An earlier version of this story was published with an image of Natural Instincts Pet Products food made in Canada. This recall involves Natural Instinct Wild Venison (Natural Cat Food) manufactured in the UK.
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