Mars Petcare Australia has voluntarily recalled ADVANCE Dermocare dry food, after learning a number of dogs have been affected by megaesophagus, a condition not usually linked to food.
Nine police dog squad members, including one who was euthanased, have been struck down by the condition – an enlargement of the oesophagus.
The company has run hundreds of tests on ADVANCE Dermocare and has not found a link to the condition.
“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,” a spokesperson said in a statement on Saturday.
In a statement on Facebook, the company said “no other ADVANCE products or varieties are affected”.
“The health and wellbeing of Australian pets is our number one priority, so we were deeply concerned to learn that a number of dogs have been affected by megaoesophagus – a condition that is generally not associated with food. We have run hundreds of tests on ADVANCE Dermocare and no link has been found between the condition and our product,” it wrote.
The condition first emerged in the force in December and several possible causes have already been ruled out.
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Investigators are looking at a number of “common factors”.
“One of them does include the food that we’re feeding the dogs,” squad Inspector Jon Woodyatt told 3AW Radio on Friday.
People who have bought ADVANCE Dermocare dry dog food in 3kg, 8kg and 15kg bags are being asked to return them to the place of purchase for a refund.
No other ADVANCE products are affected by the recall.