Pet owners warned of raw food risks

BEWARE if you are responsible for feeding your cat or dog at home. Handle their food with care.

The Consumer Council (消費者委員會) warns that frozen, raw or undercooked food may not only pose a
potential health risk to pets but also to their owners.

The council issued the warning after three of 17 samples it tested contained traces of salmonella(沙門氏菌). The
products tested were 11 items of food for dogs, five for cats and one for both cats and dogs.

The council found salmonella in three raw pet food products from two Australian brands Big Dog and Doctor B’s.
The council said pets infected by salmonella could suffer from diarrhoea, vomiting and fever, while humans are not
entirely free from infection.

The chairman of the publicity and community relations committee, Michael Hui King-man (消委會宣傳及社區關
係小組主席許敬文), said humans may get infected from direct physical contact with the raw pet food. There is
also a risk from handling the pets’ faeces or food containers, he said.

Therefore, pet owners should be aware of hygiene and also wash their hands after touching such products.

Hui reminded owners who wish to purchase raw pet food that the humid weather in Hong Kong will make it easier
for it to be contaminated during delivery.

Many owners believe the natural ingredients can help improve their pets’ health and also the appearance of their

The council said US and Canada health organisations and veterinary medical associations all dissuaded owners from
feeding their pets with raw meat diets.

(The Standard, 16 October, 2015)