Midwestern Pet Foods Plant In Chickasha Under FDA Investigation

Wednesday, August 18th 2021, 5:03 pm
By: Brittany Toolis

CHICKASHA, Oklahoma -

Midwestern Pet Foods is under federal investigation after dozens of family pets died from a toxin in the food. 

One Oklahoma City woman told News 9 she watched her dog waste away with no clue how to help. 

"We just didn't know what to do because it was scary all around to see him like that," said pet owner Lisa Garcia. 

Since January, the FDA has been investigating Midwestern Pet Foods after reports of pets dying or getting sick after eating their product. 

Recalls started at the end of December 2020 with just the SportMix brand after almost 30 pets died. 

Less than two weeks, later they expanded to all pet foods containing corn after over 100 pets died, and more than 200 fell ill from Aflatoxins.

Officials traced some bags of food to the Chickasha plant. The state Department of Agriculture then began their inspections and found errors in how the incoming corn was tested.

"[Aflatoxin is] a mold fungus which occurs commonly in products like corn and wheat," said Kenny Naylor, director of consumer protection services with the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture.

The tests showed the levels of Aflatoxin in the corn used were over 500 units more the allowed amount. Up to 20 ppb (parts per billion) is acceptable, but some tests came back with levels as high as 558 ppb. 

Garcia said she felt helpless watching the mold-borne toxin take hold of her dog Shadow.

"He started losing weight. He got really skinny. He started having bad diarrhea. He had blood in his diarrhea as well. He started throwing up," she said.

The investigation led the plant to shut down for a period. It has since reopened after the Department of Agriculture said the company met its requirements.

"We're going to continue to check on them and make sure they're following what we agreed to," said Naylor.

The FDA investigation is still ongoing, and Midwestern Pet Food could face more penalties. 

News 9 reached out to the company but did not hear back prior to publication of this story. 

Garcia's dog, Shadow, also made a full recovery after she switched foods.

Click here to view all the dog food that has been recalled.