Wellness Dog Food Recall October 2012


October 30, 2012 – WellPet LLC of Tewksbury, MA has announced the withdrawal of a limited number of one of its dry kibble products due to possible moisture contamination.

This action affects Wellness Small Breed Adult Health Dry Dog Food in the 12 lbs package and bearing a “Best By” date of August 18, 2013.

No other dates, bag sizes or recipes are affected.

According to a statement made by the company on its Facebook page…

“A small batch of the product with this specific date code was found to be higher in moisture than our recipe calls for. High moisture may cause food to mold before its expiration date, but poses no health risk.”

What to Do?

As far as what to do with your affected product, the company goes on to state:

“We want you and your pet to be completely satisfied, so we are asking those who may have this limited supply of food to contact us for a replacement.”

Consumers with questions may call Wellness Customer Service at 800-225-0904.

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.

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  • fjwag3

    Your holistic vet is crap. You have to analyze ingredients, ratios, and manufacturing facilities, history, etc. There are good foods out there, dry and wet. A broad statement like that is ridiculous.

  • Diane

    Added moisture is not “dangerous.” It’s more dangerous to feed a dog any dry kibble. It’s so bad for them, no matter the brand.

  • Diane

    Dry food is so bad for dogs anyway.

  • Diane

    Dogs should never be fed dry food. My holistic vet says all dog food is crap, his words.

  • Diane

    Extra moisture won’t kill a dog…lol ““A small batch of the product with this specific date code was found to be higher in moisture than our recipe calls for. High moisture may cause food to mold before its expiration date, but poses no health risk.”


    i’m so sorry this must be hard for you tell me if she makes it or not

  • Julianna

    This is what I feed my dog and she is sick in the hospital! She had bloody diarrhea and now she is in the hospital with a failing liver, she only has a 50/50 chance of making it. Wellness dog food might kill my dog! If she makes it I will be switching her dog food immediately.

  • PuggyMommy

    I got my puppy in August 2012 and began feeding him Wellness dry puppy food right away based on vets and friends recommendation. I had never paid any attention to dog food prior and had no idea of the recall issues. Puppy loved it, and was super healthy. We had no issues for 7 months. THEN I made the mistake of ordering a large bag of it from AMAZON. My normally piggy little pug seemed not to want to eat it. He did, but much slower and not as excitedly as he always had. Then he started having really soft stools, and intermittent diarrhea. You would THINK I would have thought of the food immediately, but,since he is a pug puppy he eats sticks, leaves, rocks…anything he can swallow before we get our fingers in his mouth. We thought he must have eaten something ( other than his food ) and it would pass. Finally, we went to a reputable pet store and bought another bag of food. He happily ate it up just like he used to. This is what led me to researching the food and learning of the recall of this particular one. Obviously, we discarded all the food we had from the previous bag, but like many other people we keep his food in a airtight tub and no longer had the bag. I am confident though that that bag was contaminated and should have been recalled. I love Amazon, but I caution anyone against buying edible products for pets OR humans on line!!

  • Hound Dog Mom

    I called Wellness about a couple weeks ago and the rep told me all their Wellness brand dry foods are now being manufactured at the WellPet plant in Mishawaka.

  • Lab Lover

    Are you saying they no longer use Hagen as a co-manufacturer? All their kibble is made in Mishawaka now?

  • Pattyvaughn

    Hi Betsy

    By the time you can smell rancid fats, they are pretty far along in their rancidity.

  • Hound Dog Mom

    If a dog food had an “off” odor – I’d definitely assume the fats were rancid. I got some sample packs of the California Natural grain-free varieties, one for each variety, and when I opened one pack the odor was really funky (not like the other samples) and, sure enough, when I checked the date on that sample pack it it had expired the previous month – all the other samples were months away from their expiration date. So I bet the fats had gone rancid, I threw it out. However, I do think it would be possible to not be able to detect rancidity by odor – especially if someone isn’t familiar with the “off” odor of a rancid fat, they could just think it was strong dog food smell. So I think it’s best to play it safe and toss opened food after 6 weeks.

  • Hi HDM,

    I’m wondering about this. Do rancid fats in dog food always have an “off” odor or is it possible that itncould be bad and smell completely fine?

    I’m a nightmare in the kitchen.

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Hi Angie Wayboda –

    It great that you found a way to cut costs, however I would strongly advise against buying a larger bag of food if it takes your dog 4 months to consume. Any dry food not consumed within 4-6 weeks should be discarded. Dry food is shelf stable until the date on the bag, but only if the bag is unopened. Fats are very heat and air sensitive and once the bag is opened the fats in the food start to degrade and eventually become rancid. Rancid fats form free radicals in the body and cause cellular damage and can also deplete the body of vitamin b and e. Consumption of rancid fats has been associated with increased risks of cancer, diabetes and premature aging.

  • Angie Wayboda

    I am glad that my dog’s food isn’t on this list, yet…. hope that I never see it on here. I might have to change it for her sake. She is on Complete Health, 15 pound bag. She’s a small dog, I felt it was crazy to keep buying the smaller bag, every month! This bag lasts her 3-4 months, it’s great. Another thing is that whenever i come across a coupon for Wellness dog food, it is always the bigger bags that are on sale? I wouldn’t mind a coupon the odd time, $43 can be quite expensive some months. We should be acknowledged too sometimes…. I help you out also… Thanks, Angie

  • Debra

    Good to know! I would never have thought of an allergen. Maybe turkey would be the way to go, unless your terriers have a problem with turkey too. That must have been difficult to figure out the problem. Good job!

  • Connor

    may be a chicken allergy?? Some products say no chicken by products but still contain Chicken broth! Our terriers are both allergic to chicken.

  • Debra

    Correction. I order the 4 POUND BAG of the dry food. 12 pounds would probably last us a year! (Same link, just click on 4 pound bag square).

  • Debra

    I have a 3 year old, 10 pound, Papillon. I feed her the canned, Adult, Chicken & Sweet Potato Formula. I order the 12/12oz cans (using 1 can divided into 3 days)

    Amazon Link: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001BOX9BQ/ref=oh_details_o05_s00_i00

    and the Super5Mix, dry, Adult Health, small breed, 12 pound bag

    Amazon Link: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001HYB2P0/ref=oh_details_o05_s00_i01

    Amazon has the best price I have found because it includes super saver/free shipping. Also, when I figured the price vs the store bought, it was nearly the same, (pennies difference), plus she gets just over 1 more ounce per serving! And it’s good for her, not full of a bunch of crap. Check out the ingredients. I hope this works for your friend’s little dog. Give it a least 3-4 weeks, and hopefully she’ll see some improvement. One thing for sure she’ll see, is it makes for a much better poop scoop job! 🙂

  • LSkill

    What kind of dog do you have?? I have a friend that has a Shih Tzu with horrible wet and gooey eyes and she is saying its “just how the breed is”! I want her doggie to be able to see and read your post about Wellness. Not sure what she feeds her dog.

  • Steven Jarris

    I didn’t know that regular pet products were even recalled at all. It seems like people would let the dogs eat about anything, but that obviously is not the case. 

  • Sandy

    Thank you

  • Melissaandcrew

    No, they simply moved the food to the same place as the rest was being made-Diamond only made one variety at the time of the last recall. It sounds more to me like it was a simple case of someone adding too much liquid or not drying it long enough or at the right temperature.

  • ohnoesaz

    Then it’s worse than I thought. They switched to a new supplier without performing their due diligence to investigate quality at the plant.

    Let me guess, they just took the lowest bidder…

  • Lmarshall22

    THANK – you for listering to our rerquests for the photo of the recall package.

  • I agree with Krissy.  Sounds like fat/thickening agents on top.  Just stir it up!

  •  @ Ohnoasaz : Wellness only had one or a couple of their products made by diamond before the last diamond recall.  I believe after that recall they dropped diamond like a hot potato!  Now all their products are made in their own plant.  So this issue has nothing to do with the diamond company.

    Just a human error which happens.  Have you looked at the line of human recalls, there are quite a few of them as well.  It happens it’s just people criticize the pet food industry more than the human food recalls.   It’s kinda sad.

    @ Chrissy, I would say it’s fine to use.  That is most likely gelatin of sorts and/or fat from the animal products used in the product.   I think it’s more common in the pate style food.  If it’s an issue try switching to a stew type of food.   If it’s a lot just stir and mix it in or just use depending on how much you use at one time.   I see that as well, for my one dog that gets a whole can a day split between two meals (along with a little kibble) I don’t worry about it because she’s going to eat that whole can in a 24 hour period.   For my other dog that I’m switching to a different wet food to a lower carb option because he’s gaining weight.   He will get 1/3 can per meal with some raw meat to make up his caloric needs.   So if I see that for him I’ll try to divide it up among his three meals since I put each portion into a container when the can is opened.  It makes it much easier come feeding time.  I do use a digital scale to make sure each container is approximately the same weight.  If your just using a spoonful as a topper try putting it in another container and mixing it in.   Just try to use the can up within a three day period to keep it safe.   Food shouldn’t be open and in the fridge longer than three days, the same rule applies to human food.    

  • Chrissy

    Hello – I know this has nothing to do with Wellness – however, I saw that there are some talking about can foods here, so I thought I would ask my questions.

    We have started buying Hound and Gatos Rabbit and Pheasant, primarily, for our little pug boy who has some allergies (I have talked a lot about his allergies on here and I wanted to comment that we let our little girl’s vet take a look at him – she comes to the home to help her with her severe orthopedic needs – our boy has always had dentals every year and one not that long ago – but it turns out that his teeth were so bad in the back area – we felt awful – but his reg vet would always look in his mouth, even though he fights this – he has struggled with severe skin issues for years now and nothing was helping. His vet was always giving meds – antibiotics, prednisone, steroid shots, etc. Our at home vet came and took him for his dental and within one week his skin cleared up – all fur grew back in, crusty scabs cleared up, the sores that had been breaking out and open all cleared up. We moved them all under her care after all of that – especially when we found out my mother in law’s dog needs a dental and she too had it done not long ago by the same place we were going to). I just wanted to clear that up, lol…

    Anyways, we purchase the cans of Hound and Gatos and there seems to be a jelly like substance in there? It has been in more cans than not – can this be a normal thing, or are all the cans that have this bad? I have been throwing them out to be on the safe side, but it seems to be in all of the cans I am buying, so thought I would ask before I realize I am wasting it???

    Thank you very much for the help!

  • Pet person

    For small dogs, try freezing small portions of the food right after opening in airtight freezer bags, then thaw as needed  even the dry food.

  • judy

    thats why my dogs would not eat it anymore. they did not like the smell and i wondered about that to because it smelled funny to me. also i quit feeding all canned wellness dog they only have a 2-3-day shelf life after opened. i have small chi’s so i called the company and they said i was not using it fast enough that is why my dog got sick. guess what i no longer buy it.this dog food only has been on the market for a few months who can we trust with our dogs health now???? 

  • ohnoesaz

    I give all the credit to Wellness for being proactive.

    But, here we are again, ANOTHER Diamond produced food is defective and dangerous. Will owners learn to just not take the risk of feeding a food produced by Diamond?

  • Hound Dog Mom

    I’ve had the same thing happen with Tripett cans. I used to feed Tripett daily and ordered it by the case and on two or three occasions I opened a can and the top didn’t peel back but rather just – not sure how to describe it in words – but fell in (?) the second I pulled the tab back and broke the seal. Each time this happened the food inside looked extremely dry. Couldn’t really judge if it was spoiled or not because, well, Tripett always smells spoiled lol. But none of the cans like this were ever dented or anything. I just threw the cans out. Stuff happens, every can can’t be perfect.

  • Melissaandcrew


    I have used Wellness in the past, and would again in the future.  I bought three cans of Hannaford olives a month ago(all same lot number) Upon opening them it was evident that they were spoiled, or in the process of being spoiled. For whatever reason that lot seemed to have issues. I returned them only because I was ticked off and in the middle of making a salad, lol While I would not buy the, for a while to be sure the issue was corrected, I would buy them again in the future as it was the first problem I had

  • JJ

    Finally! A compan that is pro active in a recall of it’s product. If this company can do it the larger corporations like Mars or P&G can and should do the same. KUDOS to the Wellness corporate leaders at Well Pet LLC

  • Ediehawk

    mold on dog food looks like little whitish dots on the kibble, and when you smell it it smells musty

  • Dawn Helmedach

    I give my dogs Wellness WellBars (lamb & apple) for a treat has any heard if these have been recalled?

  • justdebralee

    Thank you for this service you provide!  My little dog DOES eat this dog food and although I have not noticed any mold, I will be checking her bag when I go home for lunch!
    Please know that your efforts with this service are very much appreciated!!

  •  not just in dog food but ANYTHING!!!!

    I don’t use this type of wellness kibble but it won’t stop me from using their products.   I had bought a case of the canned wellness beef stew from http://www.doggiefood.com and ONE can was bad.  It wasn’t dented or damaged in any way but when I opened it up it blew like a shaken bottle of soda and foamed!   I did not feed it to my dog but called wellness about it.  They took down the number on the bottom of the can from an unopened can from the same case.  They were friendly and concerned and told me not to feed it of course and I wouldn’t have.  Cans can seal wrong and go bad as she told me and it can happen.   I believe the same can happen with human food as well that are packed in jars or cans.  I have bought jars of food at the grocery store that were not sealed properly and just tossed them.  I guess next time I’ll report it to the company.   I didn’t need to be told that to believe it.    She did send me a coupon for $5 off my next wellness purchase of ANY product.   I’ll be using it on some treats in Petco at the end of the week when I get to a town that I can use it in.  I like wellness!  

    I also want to make note that when I buy a bag of dog food and dump it into a container to use I cut out the area with the UPC and the batch printed number.  Then I put that and the store receipt into a ziplock sandwich bag and put it into the bucket with the kibble.  That way if there is an issue later down the road I have the info that I need and won’t be left in the dark.   It takes two seconds to clip it out and store it away and when it’s with the food you won’t have to search for it if you need it.   When the bucket is empty I toss out the bag and put the new one in.  I also don’t mix batches of kibble.  I wait until the bucket is 100% empty before dumping in the new bag.   Just some food for thought for those that also store the food in a container other than the bag it came in.

  • Debbie McWilliams

    My cats eat this brand of food but not my dogs, doesn’t seem to be a high risk thing with the dog food and its’ a good brand.  I would dump out the bag and just check it out!  I do that with all my food anyway, it goes in a plastic bin and then I can check for bugs or worms, because I have found some before so I keep the bag so I can return it to the store.  I don’t worry about my cats, we go through a big bag and 5 cans of cat food in a week, since I do the cat box each day I can check for problems!

  • nancy sterken

    don’t take a chance…throw it out! i had to throw out an entire cabinet full of dog treats (mostly from china but if i wasn’t sure (as i throw the packages out also) i just threw them out anyway. it’s horrible what’s going on with the poison so many companies are feeding our babies! so far i’ve never heard of NEMAN”S OWN being recalled. just a possibiliy for you, but i’d research first. good luck to you!

  • Melissaandcrew


    The problem is, mold can be present before you can visually verify its presence.

  • Michele

     Also, dog food keeps much better if you store it in the original bag. 
    If you still want to use a container, please always keep the UPC symbol
    and expiration date from the bag in case of recalls.

  • Michele

     Don’t throw it away, just check it to make sure it doesn’t mold.  With an expiration date of next year, you’re probably fine.  What they’re saying is that it’s not going to make its expiration date, that’s what I’m reading.  Wellness is an excellent food that I recommend to all my clients (dog trainer).

  • Betty Stackhouse

    great this is what I feed my dogs but I empty the food into a container and threw the bag away no reference for me to check this is getting disgusting anymore with dog food I hope my dogs do not get sick.  Very Disgusted with the pet food industry anymore ticked off actually

  • Ryobiidrill

    thanks, this is the exact same food i buy.   same size for small breed, and the bag is almost gone, but the expiration date is may 3rd.     she loves this food too.