Do NOT give your dog pig ears, CDC warns after treats sickened 143 people

By | September 9, 2019

Do NOT give your dog pig ears: Pets and 143 people sickened by Salmonella from the chewy treats, CDC warns

  • Of the 143 people sickened, 33 of them were hospitalized with Salmonella
  • People have gotten sick from handling the treats, the CDC warned
  • The agency also suspects pig ears may sicken dogs, too 
  • Cases have now been confirmed in 35 states  
  • CDC advises pet owners to throw out any and all pig ear treats and to not feed them to their dogs  

Pig ear dog treats have given 143 people Salmonella infections, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said Thursday. 

It’s not clear if pet owners might given the treats a try themselves, but the CDC says that people can contract the infection simply from handling pig ears or even from touching dogs that have eaten them. 

Of the 143 people sickened, 33 have been hospitalized, but there have been no related deaths. 

The CDC has not identified one single source or set of specific sources of the infection and are urging pet owners and caretakers to throw out any pig ears in ‘secure containers so that your pets and other animals can’t eat them.’   

All of the 45 people with Salmonella reported contact with pig ear dog treats

Dogs love pig ears. 

They are chewy, dense, but not tough, making it a popular treat for both small dogs, big, old dogs, and even teething puppies.   

They’re, in fact, so popular among the growing number of dog owners in the US that fancy recipes for preservative-free smoked pig ears for your pup are popping up online. 

But it seems the current outbreak is tied to shop-bought pig ears, though officials have not yet identified a common supplier. 

Iowa was the hardest-hit, with 12 cases, followed by Michigan with seven, and New York with six.

The rest had between one and three cases: California, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Massachusetts, Missouri, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Wisconsin.

Those affected developed vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, fever, and stomach cramps. 

The CDC warns those whose symptoms linger longer than a week, or that see blood in their stool, should seek medical attention.  

Salmonella linked to pig ears has now sickened 143 people in 35 states (green and blue), with the greatest number in Iowa and New York (blue)

Salmonella linked to pig ears has now sickened 143 people in 35 states (green and blue), with the greatest number in Iowa and New York (blue) 

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