Iams Recalls Puppy Food


Logo of the FDA
According to an FDA recall news bulletin issued December 6, 2011, the Procter and Gamble Company has voluntarily retrieved a single production lot of dry dog food due to aflatoxin levels that were detected above the acceptable limit.

The product, Iams ProActive Health Smart Puppy dry dog food, has a Use By or Expiration Date of February 5 or 6, 2013.

Lot Info for Iams Puppy Food Recall

This dog food has already been retrieved from store shelves. No illnesses have been reported in association with this production lot to date, and no other Iams pet food products are involved.

While no health effects related to this product have been reported, P&G retrieved this product as a precautionary measure.

Consumers who purchased the product listed should stop using the product and discard it and contact Iams at the number below for a replacement voucher.

Aflatoxin is a naturally occurring by-product from the growth of Aspergillus flavus and can be harmful to pets if consumed in significant quantities.

Pets which have consumed this product and exhibit symptoms of illness including sluggishness or lethargy combined with a reluctance to eat, vomiting, yellowish tint to the eyes or gums, or diarrhea should be seen by a veterinarian.

What to Do

If a dog shows any of these signs, consumers should immediately stop feeding the suspected products — and consult a vet.

So, take precautions. And be sure to tell everyone you know.

You can report complaints about FDA-regulated pet food products by calling the consumer complaint coordinator in your area.

Or go to http://www.fda.gov/petfoodcomplaints.

For further information or a product replacement or refund contact P&G toll-free at 866-908-1569 (Monday – Friday, 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM EST) or visit www.iams.com.

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  • SunnyBunny

    If you feed your dogs Iams, you should consider looking into the ethical practices of the company. A few years ago they were charged with animal abuse in association with animal testing. It is absolutely heartbreaking that a company that should have dogs good intentions at heart got charged with animal abuse. I refuse to support Iams.


  • Hound Dog Mom

    Have you tried any other high quality foods other than Blue Buffalo? Blue Buffalo really isn’t that great (and it’s extremely over-priced) and seems to be having a lot of quality issues. So I wouldn’t judge all quality foods based on your negative experience with Blue Buffalo.

  • Pattyvaughn

    I hope you don’t believe Iams is still owned by the same people who created it.  And I can assure you that P&G have not been making quality dog food for 80 years.  What they have down is how to make the cheapest food and charge the most money for it.  You are paying for someone elses good name, but whatever floats your boat.

  • Alex Jonshon

    I come from a family that has working lines of Rottweilers. I currently have two GSD; working GSD, Iams is good food. They have been doing this for 80 years and They have it down. I do feed my dogs raw lamb. I have a lamb butcher by my house, I get the fat for free. Iams is very good food. If a dog if fed to much it will get fat. I fed my dog’s that over priced blue crap and I had nothing but problems.

  • aimee

    Hi Addie,

    In dogs, and therefore presumably wolves, Vit D is considered a dietary requirement as the synthesis of Vit D in the skin is so very ineffective. This differs from other animals.

  • Addie

    I was just reading about various vitamin deficiencies, and saw that zoo animals in the north deprived of sunlight during the winter require vitamin d supplements, otherwise rickets can result. Wonder if lack of sunlight is a factor in the cause of rickets in pups? Just a thought

  • aimee

    Hi Addie,
    Here are links to the sources I referred to
    http://www.springerlink.com/content/k0103226n8h4l616/  (This reference is to fox kits but serves to document that nutritional errors can occur in the wild.)
    The Yellowstone wolf: a guide and sourcebook By Paul Schullery,  pg 132
    “…the primary causes of mortality are disease and poor nutrition in pups or yearlings..”
     The Wolf Almanac: A Celebration of Wolves and Their World by Robert H. Busch pg 39 lists rickets in the section on disease wolves are susceptible to.
    In regards to anemia and rickets, it isn’t that I think these are direct causes of pup death. They were just examples that not every wolf in nature is on the highest nutritional plane.

  • aimee

    Hi Addie,

    Here are links to the sources I referred to
    http://www.springerlink.com/content/k0103226n8h4l616/ This reference is to fox kits but serves to document that nutritional errors can occur in the wild.

    The Yellowstone wolf: a guide and sourcebook By Paul Schullery, pg 132
    “…the primary causes of mortality are disease and poor nutrition in pups or yearlings..”
    The Wolf Almanac: A Celebration of Wolves and Their World by Robert H. Busch pg 39 lists rickets in the section on disease wolves are susceptible to.

    In regards to anemia and rickets, it isn’t that I think these are direct causes of pup death. They were just examples that not every wolf in nature is on the highest nutritional plane.

  • LabsRawesome

    Gordon, for someone that doesn’t believe in God, you sure talk about him A LOT! You know what they say about opinions-they are like buttcracks-everybody’s got one!

  • melissa


    You are  entitled to your opinion, and I understand what you are saying, but you can not deny that the dog(wolf etc) can only absorb from the meal, what there is to absorb.

  • Gordon

    There are no assumptions made re fresh raw meaty bones and offal. Even with compromised prey, in the way of ailment affliction, will still provide more goodies and absorption delivery of goodies, than any processed pet food. That is my opinion.

    Re the various beliefs out there that you allude to, it is really arbitrary and irrespective of the fact that Mother Nature’s intended evolutionary and ancestral diet, is best for dogs. That’s a fact and not an opinion. It’s no secret that I’m a big fan of Dr. Lonsdale and as far as fact goes, dogs do their own processing, cooking, extrusion of Mother Nature’s intended REAL, FRESH, RAW FOODS, and they don’t need us to cook their foods, for their most appropriate diet. Unless, you’re under a different illusion and you’re not interested in providing your dogs with the best form of prepared diets.

  • melissa

    Why should Aimee be ashamed of expressing her beliefs and presenting ideas, thoughts etc that differ from yours? Not everyone, Gordon, feels that a raw diet is best, nor completely balanced. And not every one that belives this works for a dog food company as you are trying to suggest.

    I know you like to always say that the minerals etc are always in proper balance due to “mother nature” but that would be assuming that the animal used in the meal is not afflicted with ailments of their own. Given the fact that many, if not most of the meat animals are raised in large quantity, I find it hard to imagine that each and every one of them has had proper nutrition to ensure what you claim to be a fact.

    The nutrition of even wolves. coyotes etc is dependent on what they can catch and eat in their home turf-and if that home turf is deficit, then so are the prey animals.

  • Gordon

    God help all those poor doggies eating this Iams crapp!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    You should be ashamed of yourself aimee!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Gordon

    aimee – You’re full of it!!!

    Sorry Mike. You may delete this if you wish. But I can’t help but tell it the way I feel!!!

    aimee – Just say what you do for a living and be honest with every body. My dogs will never eat Purina or Iams or the like. You’re a joke with the innuendo subtle snippets of subliminal messages to try and influence people from the best food that Mother Nature decided…..RAW, REAL, FRESH FOOD.

    wAKE UP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Addie

    Anything I’ve read or seen has always indicated starvation and being killed by other wolves as the main causes of deaths. Send some articles my way please? Just curious, enjoy reading about them. I’m wondering how much of the population is actually killed by anemia or rickets, especially since gray wolves are known to be incredibly hardy, unlike their red wolf counterparts who are somewhat more susceptible to parasites and disease. I’d like to see they actually died from it, not just had it. It’s known many wolves carry distemper, but do not actually die from it, so that’s why I’m interested. Just some of the articles that say starvation and fighting are the primary cause of death:

  • aimee

    Hi Addie,
    I’m sure starvation is certainly a factor but the terms “poor nutrition” or “malnutrition” are being used in the literature; anemia and rickets have been reported. 

  • Anonymous

    It would make a lot more sense if these foods were tested and cleared before being shipped out. 🙂

  • Addie

    I thought pups died from lack of food, not incorrect amounts of vitamins/minerals? 

  • aimee

    Gordon you are always good for a laugh : )

    This just in from Mother Nature: I’m temporarily recalling rabbits due to a high proportion of the current rabbit population carrying tularemia.  Rabbits will be reintroduced once I deem they are again safe for consumption”  

    Since a primary cause of high wolf pup/yearling mortality is attributed to nutrition I still maintain that a “natural” diet isn’t automatically an ideal diet;it still needs to be in proper balance.  

  • Anonymous
  • Gordon

    Dave’s Hound – In addition to my second last comment below, I don’t think the blame rests on just the bad behaviour of shareholders, but is attributable to the high flying executives running such companies, who seem to grant themselves pay increases, even when such companies are suffering a down spiral in profit margins, and or when a GFC is again looming. 

  • Gordon

    aimee – Should you read this, I have to say that there has never been a recall by Mother Nature in her chosen diet for dogs and cats alike, including, I emphasize, GROWING PUPPIES, unlike as you can see, Iams ProActive Health Smart Puppy. Just another undeniable and indisputable fact that Mother Nature’s intended evolutionary and ancestral diet is never overdosed with any one nutrient, mineral, or agent. Unlike this Iams product. In fact, dogs can even eat carrion, unlike expired and rancid processed pet foods, and still be OK. 

  • Gordon

    I agree with your point, Dave’s Hound. I don’t see why a good company, big or small, that may have a good product, can’t be driven by the goal to maintain and strive for even greater improvements, whilst they prosper. That is a far cry from companies such as P&G, who in my opinion, do the contrary whilst still prospering.

  • Anonymous

    That wouldn’t surprise me. But even if just a small portion of contaminated corn got siloed with a bunch of clean corn, it would contaminate that whole mass… 🙁

  • Dave’s Hounds


    While I think that is true of many corporations but most small business begins with a passion of an idea – and of course they want to make a profit but you can make a profit and do the right thing. The problem with publicly held companies is that they become owned by the shareholders which drives bad behavior.

  • Dave’s Hounds

    Josephine I did not not know that about Wysong! I use Epigen in my rotation and had no idea they use the same facility as Iams……Menu Foods has been purchased by someone else – but I def will take that into consideration re Wysong….I am sorry to hear that. I am so glad we have this forum to get this information from.

  • Gordon

    I don’t think there are any profitable companies in the entire world that are driven by passion first before profit. Especially not public floated companies. Unlike the days of noble politicians and shops being closed on Sundays, the days of passion first driven companies, are a faded memory.

  • Addie

    That’s exactly what I meant DFN. The smaller companies tend to be formed with a passion at the core, like Brothers for instance. If I could make money doing something I love, I would do it too. That passion is what I want driving a company, not profit. 

  • except that wysong is mfg at the same company as the iams.. menu foods.  so they are using the same ingredients, no matter what they lead you to believe.  

  • that tainted corn may have come from iowa. in sept, 20, 2011, several farmers corn crops in the midwest found to have the aflatoxin in way higher levels then thought possible. Could that corn, rather then go to the landfill, have found its way to the kibble mfg?? 


  • Marie

    Yay! I have a picture! 😀

  • Dave’s Hounds

    Why doesn’t my photo show up anymore?

  • Dave’s Hounds

    I agree human and pet food recalls will happen – and of course we expect any dog food manufacturer large or small to make a profit or they will cease to exist. However I do not trust P&G or Iams or the like. They are all about profit. At least with Wysong, Orijen, Ziwipeak etc you know these are animal lovers that started animal food companies based on a passion. Cost is also a factor and I have said this before – you cannot expect human grade quality dog food at 30 cents per pound. I believe it costs more in the $2 plus per pound range to procure and manufacture human grade dog food. You get what you pay for (to a point as there are some garbage brands being sold as “premium”). The handling of a recall does say something about the integrity of a company.

  • wellness dog food is mfg by diamond. 

  • Antonio

    You have a good point Jonathan I agree with that statement.

  • Antonio, while I tend to agree with you, I think there are companies that operate with integrity. The question is, which one can you trust? I do believe that the smaller the companies tent to be more idealistic, and less compartmentalised. You want as few hands in the product as possible. Iams is a huge subsidiary of an already huge mega-corporation. I do not trust that Proctor & Gamble cares about me, you, your dog, or their own mothers. lol

  • Antonio

    Addie, I hate to sound so negative but if you want to feed your pet a food from a company that truly has your dog’s best interest in mind then your probably out of lucky, “Unless you prepare Home meals Raw/Cooked” for the dog. Rule number one to being in business is to make a profit, unfortunately fluffy is nothing more than profit. I know that sounds harsh, but sometimes the truth isn’t pretty.

  • Antonio

    Recalls can and do happen in human food and pet food. I agree w/ the poster above it’s how the affected company handles the recall that really makes the biggest impression on me. From my personal experience with recalls I found Diamond to be one of the worse in the way they handled their recall years ago, as my dog(s) at the time were among those affected.

  • Addie

    I’m not trying to defend any company’s recalls, but I would like to point out Iams has a lot more to lose if they mishandle a recall. Their customer base is far more expansive than smaller companies like Earthborn or Wysong. People seem to forget that corporations always act in the best interest of the company. In this case the company’s best interest is clearly to recall items before potentially losing face to the public, which would result in a drop of profits. Sorry, but I’d much rather spend money on a company who has my dog’s best interest in mind rather than the potential profit loss. Corporations are much like politics, there’s a hidden motive behind every public move. Nothing admirable about that.

  • aimee

    Every company will have recalls be they big, small, “holistic”, or conventional. What is important to me is how the company handles recalls. Does it through its own quality control discover the problem and recall the food or is it not until veterinarians make a connection between illness and a particular food that the food is recalled.

    Blue’s recall only occurred months after veterinarians had linked their food to health problems. Diamond recalled for thiamin only after a cluster of neurologic cases was reported by vets. Wellness recalled for thiamin only after consumer complaints. Iams also had a recall for thiamin but based on QA testing, not any reported illness (from what info I found) Diamond’s huge aflatoxin recall occurred only after deaths were reported to the company. Go Natural food resulted in numerous deaths and the cause was never determined.

    I recently just read that it was Iams that discovered the problem with Menu foods and literally forced the largest recall ever. I’m not sure of the details but it sounded like Iams discovered the problem when doing in house QA testing on the food that they had contracted Menu to make.

    If a company never has any recalls is that a sign of excellent QA or is it a sign that they don’t have stringent QA so they never know if any particular lot is out of specs? I think it can go either way. If a company has a small market share there may never be a cluster of cases for veterinarians to pick up on.

    Interestingly to me I had an e mail exchange with a manufacturer of a small local 5 star rated food in which he sent me lab forms and asked which tests he should run on his food and how often and for which toxins he should be checking. YIKES!

    I am disappointed that food is being released for distribution prior to QA test results being completed as it seems was the case here. And I don’t quite understand “silent pulls”. Are the foods out of the company specs but not FDA which is why a full recall isn’t triggered?

    What has been a learning experience for me is how ubiquitous alfatoxin is. While more common on grains it is found on many other crops as well. When affected crops are fed to food animals levels in meat and milk occur. I never realized that when I drank my glass of milk in the am I could be downing some aflatoxin as well. Certain levels are allowed in milk and food for human consumption as well as food for animal consumption. EWW!

  • Marie

    Note I said BETTER QA not *perfect* QA. Or that companies like Champion Pet foods are infallible.

    The FDA permits these “silent pulls” because pets do not have the legal status to merit anything else – they are just property. Legally, ‘property’ can only be replaced so pet food companies aren’t busting their ass to get the word out of a recall. (unlike human food recalls) If you want THAT to change, you need to change the legal status of animals FIRST.

  • Marie – One would think so, but not true. I fed Orijen, expensive food and one would think they had a better QA practice, but both my boys had “d”. Finally took them to the Vet, stool test was negative. One night I saw a sharp objects sticking out of the kibbles. To make a long story short, their machines weren’t separating the fish bones and ended up in the kibble. I then found out other people complained about it two months prior to me finding the bones. The company did not pull the bad lots from my retailer – they didn’t even know there was a problem & they did not have a warning on their website that was visible. When I spoke with them, they told me to click on the fish icon to find the President’s letter. IMO a responsible company would have a visible warning on their website & pulls all bags off the shelves. A retailer friend of mine told me his distributor said the bags didn’t make it to my State.

    I realize problems can occur, but they aren’t honest in communicating with their consumers. That’s where my plan comes in. They need to notify ALL consumers within 24 hrs. of finding a problem or recall. There are silent pulls and you can be one of the people sitting with a bad lot and still feeding your dog. They need to be held responsible.

    After I stopped feeding Orijen, the boys were fine.

  • Marie

    More expensive (and the *actual* holistic) foods have better QA practices. Of course, no one is recall-proof.

  • Folks – Natural Balance has a program – “Buy With Confidence”, yet they too had a problem and recalled food. It’s not just cheap food.


    See my plan on:


    Let’s work together on this, otherwise, nothing will change!


  • Marie

    I understand that, but I am interpreting his comment to say that this issue with aflatoxin was not a mistake on Iams’ part. I am not trying to defend Iams, but it seems as though they do test…just after the fact (which I agree isn’t a good practice). But it’s a cheap food, so you pay for not only ingredient quality, but QA practices as well.

  • melissa


    Bob did not say they put it in on purpose-He stated that they know what ingredients are in their products and the likelihood that there may be problems resulting from using those ingredients. In other words, if you put corn in your food, you KNOW there is an increased risk then if you did not use corn. And, if using ingredients that are more prone to problem, why not test and wait for those results before distributing said food?

    Given the fact that Cargill just recalled two products as well, I am betting they can not be the only two companies who got contaminated corn –

  • Marie


    Aflatoxin is not something Iams puts in their food deliberately. It’s something that occurs naturally and the best they can do is test for it.

  • Elly

    We have just tried Iams. We just bought a yorkie puppy and he seems to like the puppy food and it doesn’t cause him allergies.

  • Bob

    Dog Food Ninja how can it be a “mistake”? They know what they put into their dog food and they know what the chances are of having problems from certain ingredients and what they put into it.

  • Carol

    Supermarket crappy dog food !!!! People do your research, I wouldn’t feed this junk to any animal.

  • Debbie Harper

    I’ve fed Iams to my dogs for years,then they started having recalls. My male JRT started having bowel problems. Loose stool,yellow stool ect. At the vets all the time. Went to the Consumer Complaints on Iams Pet Food. Scary! And the abuse the animals go through for testing. Don’t even want to go there. I cried! No more Iams for my kids! when I quit Iams, the problems went away.

  • melissa

    Mistakes do happen and we can choose to give a company the benefit of the doubt or crucify them. My problem is that a few short weeks ago they apparently attempted to remove product from the shelves, calling it a “pull” versus a recall, until the supermarket inadvertently posted it on their own website(and then quickly removed it) The key to my disgruntlement is the word “quietly” and for the same issue. This type of thing makes me wonder how many times they and other companies attempt to “quietly” do the same thing.

  • Christina, I’m glad your dogs are healthy, but I do beseech you to go read the review and detailed description of the ingredients in Iams.


    It’s a bag of corn with chicken by-products. While it’s not the worst food, it certainly doesn’t have much going for it. Plus, P&G’s track record with animals under their care is less than stellar.

  • Christina

    I have fed Iams/Eukanuba foods & treats for over 25 years to 4 generations of Vizslas. Their average life has been 15 years — 3 have made it to the Best in Show ring and five have group placements with 10 out of 12 becoming AKC champions.They all have beautiful coats and have all led/lead healthy lives. These products are a good fit with my dogs and the four litters I have bred since 1986. Mistakes happen.

  • Christina

    I have fed Iams/Eukanuba foods & treats for over 25 years to 4 generations of Vizslas. Their average life has been 15 years — 3 have made it to the Best in Show ring and five have been placed in groups. They all have beautiful coats and have all led/lead healthy lives. These products are a good fit with my dogs and the four litters aI have bred since 1986. Mistakes happen.

  • Bob and Kathy, while I’m not going to defend Iams at all, ANY company can make a mistake and have a recall. It’s happened to some of the better foods, and, funny enough, hasn’t happened to many of the national brands that I wouldn’t feed to a starving chipmunk. Also, there are no “human grade” dry dog foods. Once a meat is rendered, it’s no longer human grade. If they start with human grade ingredients, that’s great. But I believe they can no longer claim that (?). I’m sure the junky food manufacturers with all the money behind them have something to do with that…

  • Milena Popovich


  • kathy

    This is why people should research their dog food and buy human grade
    dog food only with no recalls in their history. I have. My choice
    returned my call and explained their process and where their protein
    comes from

  • Hi Joyce… That’s a good question. From looking at the actual text of the recall, I’d guess this is ONLY the regular Smart Puppy. But a guess is not reliable for something important like this. You may wish to contact Iams Customer Service. Hope that helps.

  • Bob

    This is why its best to stay away from commercial brands. Better to buy a high grade all natural dog food where you know where their sources come from.

  • Joyce

    Is the recall on all Smart Puppy including the small/toy breed?

  • Marie

    I’m no fan of Iams, but I do commend companies that do voluntary recalls at least, and especially when no illness have been reported (as of *yet*).

    Still, unfortunate to have it in the first place.