Food recall as hundreds of cats die from ‘heartbreaking’ rare illness

A number of cat food brands have been recalled as a precautionary measure as more cats die from a rare and unexplained disease.

443 cats were recently diagnosed with pancytopenia, 284 of which sadly died, ITV News reported.

Pancytopenia is a disease that occurs when a cat has very low white and red blood cells and can be caused by anemia, bleeding, clotting, sepsis, blood cancer, bone cancer, and immune system disorders, among other things.

The Royal Veterinary College has described the disease as “heartbreaking” – it often affects young kittens and often more than one pet in the same family.

The most common possible cause of cats diagnosed with the disease is diet, veterinarians have found.

Last week the Food Standards Agency recalled a number of cat foods, a list can be found here.

A Food Standards Agency spokesman said, “We are working with the Royal Veterinary College, the Animal Plant and Health Agency and other government departments in all four UK nations, local authorities and the pet food supply chain to investigate a possible link between certain cat food products and cat pancytopenia .

“At this point there is no definitive evidence to confirm a link.

“No unsafe cat food has been identified, but based on research to date, affected manufacturers and brand owners are taking precautionary measures to recall and withdraw cat food products associated with affected cats.

“There is no evidence that this outbreak of pancytopenia in cats poses a risk to human health.”