FDA officials have received reports of 3,600 dogs and 10 cats becoming sick since 2007. Approximately 580 of those pets have died. The exact cause of the illnesses remains unclear.
The agency says most of the pet treats come from China, but there isn't one particular brand to watch out for. No recall has been issued yet.
"This is one of the most elusive and mysterious outbreaks we've encountered," says FDA's Center for Veterinary Medicine Director Bernadette Dunham, DVM, Ph.D. "Our beloved four-legged companions deserve our best effort, and we are giving it."
Officials have conducted more than 1,200 tests on treat samples, but the exact cause of the illnesses remains unclear.
Ill pets may exhibit decreased appetite and activity, vomiting, diarrhea and increased water consumption and urination.To contact the FDA, dial 1-888-463-6332. For more information, visit www.fda.gov.