FDA Issues Salmonella Warning But Dog Food Company Refutes It


Even though Salmonella risks are less severe for dogs than they are for humans, they can still cause unfortunate symptoms in our furry friends. Plus, a dog carrying the bacteria can pass Salmonella onto humans in their household. So, if dog food products test positive for Salmonella, it’s best for the company to proceed with caution.

However, when a popular raw dog food brand received a Salmonella warning from the FDA, they didn’t recall their products. Instead, they refuted the warning, claiming their products are still safe.

What Products Are Affected?

During routine testing, the FDA noticed traces of Salmonella in Darwin’s Natural Pet Products, made by Arrow Reliance. The exact products affected are Darwin’s Natural Pet Products Natural Selections Chicken Recipe with Organic Vegetables for Dogs, Lot 9774, manufactured on June 13, 2023.

These products have white and clear plastic packages with blue labels. The lot codes are listed in the lower left corner of the front of the package. Each package contains four individual units, weighing two pounds each.

No other lots of Darwin’s Natural Pet Products have been reported to have Salmonella.

Darwin's Affected Product

The Company’s Response

The product hasn’t been recalled, but the company has addressed the situation. They decided not to issue a voluntary recall. Instead, they posted a statement. Darwin’s wrote:

“It is important to know that salmonella is not typically harmful to pets. Nonetheless, the food samples were flagged under the FDA’s zero-tolerance policy, which is largely designed for human safety and for food that humans will consume, not pets.

It is also very important to know that we have not received any complaints from customers who have received products from the same lot numbers of the pet food cited in the FDA notice.

While there are no risks to pet health, we felt it important to notify you regardless. We believe the FDA’s action is wholly unnecessary, and ultimately, based on flawed regulatory decision-making. To prevent a recurrence of this situation, we have taken steps to make this position clear to the agency.”

They concluded the memo by assuring their customers that their meals are safe. They promised to keep everyone updated on the situation, but as of now, they’re not taking any major actions. You can read the full message here.

What Should You Do if You Have the Affected Products?

While Salmonella is not as harmful to dogs as it is to humans, it can still make dogs sick and shouldn’t be in pet food at all. Of course, it’s up to pet parents to decide how they want to react to this news, but the FDA strongly recommends disposing of the affected product if you have it. If you can’t find the lot code on your package, you may want to dispose of it anyway just to be safe.

If you or your dog are showing unusual symptoms after coming into contact with the food, seek medical assistance immediately. You can contact your local Consumer Complaint Coordinator if you experience illness related to the product. Even though the product isn’t recalled, it’s still better to be safe than sorry with your pet’s health.

To discuss questions or concerns with Darwin’s, you can email the company at safety@darwinspet.com.

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