Caution! Imported Treats, Chews and Jerky Could Be Hazardous to Your Dog

By Karen A. Soukiasian

The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) has noted an increase in Fanconi Syndrome. It is believed to be associated with an increase in pets given treats, chews and jerky processed in China.

Fanconi Syndrome is a renal tubular disease of the kidney. It is an impairment of the re-absorption functions of the renal tubes. Instead of releasing certain substances into the bloodstream to be absorbed, they are released into the urine. This disease may cause kidney and liver failure. It can be fatal.

There are breeds of dogs and cats that are inherently predisposed to a familiar form of Fanconi Syndrome. They include but are not limited to: Basenji, Beagle, Bull Terrier, Cairn Terrier, Chow-Chow, Doberman Pinscher, German Shepherd, Laso Apso, Miniature Schnauzer, Norwegian Elkhound, Rottweiler, Samoyed, Shar-Pei, Shih Tzu, Shetland Sheepdog, Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier, Standard Poodle, Welsh Corgi, Whippet and Yorkshire Terrier.

Cat breeds predisposed to the familiar form of the syndrome included, but are not limited to Abyssinian and Persian.

Watch for weight loss, loss of hair around eyes, dull coat, lack of appetite, lethargy, muscle twitching, depression, vomiting, diarrhea, excessive drinking and/or excessive urination.

It is suspected the processing procedures used in China for treats, chews and jerky may contain toxic substances including heavy metals; which are associated with non-familiar Fanconi Syndrome.

Fanconi Syndrome is sometimes misdiagnosed as canine diabetes. As a blood test is used to diagnose the syndrome, be sure if your veterinarian suspects' canine diabetes, they further investigate for Fanconi Syndrome. Diabetes treatment can be fatal to a dog with Fanconi Syndrome! If diagnosed early enough, there are treatments, which may provide your pet with relief and extend the quality and length of their life.

Bottom line: Don't take any chances. Check the package label. If the treats, chews or jerky you have are made in China, toss them out!

Karen A. Soukiasian
Article by Karen A. Soukiasian
Karen A. Soukiasian, GOOD DOG! - DOG TRAINING and BED-n-BISCUITS dog boarding and training - Owner/Trainer, St. Augustine, Florida - AKC CANINE GOOD CITIZEN and S.T.A.R. PUPPY Evaluator. Visit my website at: and my page at Facebook.

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