BREAKING: Petco to Discontinue Selling All Pet Treats from China

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petcoPetco today announced it will stop carrying China-made dog and cat treats at its more than 1,300 store locations nationwide, including Unleashed by Petco stores and online at, by the end of 2014. The move makes Petco the first national pet specialty retailer to take this step in support of the health and well-being of pets.

“We know some pet parents are wary of dog and cat treats made in China, especially Chicken Jerky products, and we’ve heard their concerns,” said Jim Myers, Petco CEO. “As a leader in the industry and the trusted partner for our pet parents, we’re eager to make this transition and to expand our assortment of safe and healthy treats, the majority of which are made right here in the U.S. Very simply, we feel this decision is in the best interest of the pets we all love and, ultimately, for our business.”

Since 2007, and as recently as just last week, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has periodically cautioned consumers about a potential link between reported illnesses in dogs and the consumption of jerky products made in China. However, the FDA has been unable to identify a direct link between the reported illnesses and the China-made treats, and has not recommended a recall of jerky products.

“We’ve been following the FDA warnings and related customer concerns closely, and we’ve been actively reducing our China-made assortment and expanding our American-made offerings for several years now,” said Myers. “We know the FDA hasn’t yet identified a direct cause for the reported illnesses, but we decided the uncertainty of the situation outweighs the lack of actual proof. It has taken some time and careful thought to get to this point, but we’re proud to make the change and we believe our customers will be pleased with it as well.”

The final stage of the transition will begin in September and is expected to be complete by the end of 2014, marking the end of a multi-year process in which Petco has been working with vendors and suppliers to offer more safe and healthy alternatives to treats made in China.

Pet parents looking for alternatives to China-made dog or cat treats will find a broad selection of USA-made products at Petco from brands like American Jerky, Blue Buffalo, Blue Ridge Naturals, Canidae, Colorado Naturals, Dogswell, Isle of Dog, Merrick, Natural Balance, Nature’s Variety, Prairie Dog, Zuke’s and more. Petco also carries a number of safe and long lasting treats and chews from other regions of the world, including New Zealand, Australia and South America.

For more information about Petco or to find a location near you, visit

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When I adopted my shepherd mix, Molly, from a local shelter 12 years ago, I had no idea the impact she would have on my life. Through Molly, I've learned to be more patient, experienced unconditional love, been alerted to the mailman and every squirrel within a block radius of the house, and ingested enough fur to build 3 or 4 more dogs! When I lost Molly to cancer just a few months ago, I adopted Olive, a 13 week old Golden Retriever. Together, we smile at least a hundred times a day!


  1. This is a step in the right direction. I still won’t buy treats for my dogs even if they’re made in the US. Even if they’re made in the US most of the ingredients come from china.

    I prefer to make their treats at home. There are tons of recipes that take 10 minutes to prepare and then bake and you have a healthy product with no worries.

    In addition making jerky is so easy. Walmart sells the dehydrators, all you have to do is cut the meat and let the dehydrator do the rest.

  2. This is a red flag reminding us that we need to be very careful about our food ingredients and their sources. Remember the melamine pet food recall a few years ago that affected so many pet foods?? Also we need to be cautious about human foods containing soy & fillers from China … there seems to be a trend. We need to get more proactive before the recalls to avoid these tragedies or future dilemmas.

    • I am frustrated with SOY now being in virtually every packaged or canned food. It’s the new “high fructose corn syrup” that will be added to everything and years from now the public will figure out that it is not healthy for them to consume. I try to eat unprocessed, whole food as much as I can, but occasionally you want/need to buy something in a package.

  3. If Petco were the “good guy”, then they should stop making it a MISSION to put smaller pet retailers out of business. Smaller pet retailers that already have ingredient restrictions store-wide, that have lead-testers for their toys, that implement standards before they’re even necessary…

    Unleashed sure does look an awful lot like… Pet Food Express? Ever heard of it? Only if you’re in the Bay Area. Petco has made it a mission to keep Pet Food Express from growing.

    DON’T BUY FROM THE CORPORATIONS. They don’t give a crap!

  4. This is awesome news! I was just complaining at my local large pet store (Pet Supermarket) saying these large stores need to stop selling these China dog killing products.