A popular dog food brand has voluntarily recalled some of its products after a number of dogs became ill with a potentially fatal throat disease called megaoesophagus.
The rare, incurable disease causes dogs’ oesophaguses to become abnormally enlarged, which can prevent them from swallowing or absorbing food.
Mars Petcare Australia said Advance Dermocare dry food in 3-kilogram, 8-kilogram and 15-kilogram bags were being recalled.
“We have run hundreds of tests on Advance Dermocare and no link has been found between the [megaoesophagus] condition and our product,” a statement on the brand’s website said.
“Regardless, we are voluntarily recalling these products as a precaution while we work to get to the bottom of the issue as soon as we can.”
Dog owners who purchased one of the affected products were urged to return them to the place of purchase for a full refund.
The announcement came after a Victorian Police dog was euthanased after contracting megaoesophagus, and eight others fell sick.
In South Australia, the Correctional Services Department said one of two dogs diagnosed with the illness was put down this month.
A spokesperson said the department has now “changed the food provided to our dog squad as a precaution”.
“The department has notified the manufacturer of the food, and has sent a sample of the food to be tested and are awaiting results,” the spokesperson said.
The department was awaiting the results of an autopsy to confirm the cause of death, but would not comment on whether the brand fed to the dogs was Advance Dermocare.
An SA Police spokesperson said there had been “no issues” with any of its dogs.
Victoria Police would not comment further on Sunday.
Concerned pet owners should contact their veterinarian or the Mars Petcare Australia Consumer Care team on 1800 640 111.