Pets that have been infected with Salmonella after eating recalled dog food may shed the bacteria for six weeks. Be sure your clients know that Salmonella can survive in the environment for a long time, and the bacteria can infect many species of animals, including humans.
People inadvertently ingest Salmonella when kitchen counters and cooking utensils become contaminated, when they don’t wash their hands after touching infected animals, or when toddlers play with pets’ contaminated food bowls.
Clinical signs of Salmonella in animals include lethargy, loss of appetite, fever, vomiting, and diarrhea. Asymptomatic carriers of the bacteria appear healthy.
So, to prevent infection, encourage clients to wash their hands with soap and water after contact with pets as well as their food, treats, and feces. They should also scoop and dispose of their dogs’ poop. If clients still have any of the recalled dog food, they should seal it in a plastic bag and discard it in a covered trash can to prevent pets and wildlife from eating it.