Pet deaths linked to treats get new focus in FDA proposal to make pet food safer

CLEVELAND - There are new developments in the mysterious deaths of nearly 600 dogs that ate pet treats from China. Now, nearly a year after NewsChannel5 reported these pet deaths in a 5 On Your Side consumer investigation, the government appears to be taking some action.

The new information just released by the government today about this problem includes making pet food safer.

The priority is to have those who sell pet food and animal feed in the United States, including importers, to follow certain sanitation practices and have detailed food safety plans.

All of the manufacturers would have to put individual procedures in place to prevent their food from becoming contaminated.

If companies fail to verify their food is safe, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration could stop the shipments of their pet food.

The government, as of now, does little to ensure that companies are trying to prevent pet food safety problems. The course of action now is a wait-and-see approach with only a response after outbreaks like the jerky contamination.

Again, this is only a proposal by the FDA. 

The agency plans to take comments for four months before issuing a final ruling and will hold a series of public meetings to explain the proposal.

Just today, NewChannel5 found one of the recalled bags of treats at a local store, tried to buy it, but the computer gave it the red flag and wouldn't let us buy it.

Be careful. The treats are still out there.

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