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Loudon-made Joey’s Jerky pet treats looked at in salmonella outbreak

At least 21 people in Merrimack and Hillsborough counties have recently been sickened by the same strain of salmonella, which health officials have preliminarily linked to a pet food produced in Loudon.

Kritter’s Kitchen Kreations LLC has voluntarily recalled Joey’s Jerky brand chicken jerky treats for pets. The product was sold at America’s Pets in Hudson, Blue Seal in Bow, K9 Kaos in Dover, Osborne’s Agway in Concord, Sandy’s Pet Food Center in Concord and The Yellow Dog’s Barn in Barrington.

The state Department of Heath and Human Services has asked that people discard the jerky if they have it at home.

Laboratory tests to confirm whether the jerky is the source of the outbreak are still pending. Messages left for Kritter’s Kitchen Kreations were not returned yesterday.

Jose Montero, director of the Division of Public Health Services, said salmonella contamination of pet food is rare, but it can spread to humans when pet owners don’t wash their hands after handling the food or treats.

Salmonella bacteria causes diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps, often within 12 to 72 hours after infection. The illness usually lasts from four to seven days. Most people recover without treatment, but severe infections can occur and, in rare cases, can cause death unless the person is treated with antibiotics.

Dogs and cats that become ill from a salmonella infection generally will have diarrhea that may contain blood or mucus, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Affected animals may seem more tired than usual and may have a fever or vomit. Some cats do not develop diarrhea but will have a decreased appetite, fever and excess salivation; other animals may have a salmonella infection but not appear sick, according to the CDC.

If your dog or cat has these signs of illness or if you are concerned your pet may have a salmonella infection, contact your pet’s veterinarian. Let your veterinarian know whether your pet recently consumed a recalled product. Do not feed your pet any more of the recalled products. Dispose of the products immediately.

For information on salmonella, contact the state Bureau of Infectious Disease Control at 271-4496 or visit the CDC’s website at cdc.gov/salmonella.

(Sarah Palermo can be reached at 369-3322 or
spalermo@cmonitor.com or on Twitter @SPalermoNews.)

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