The federal government is warning American dog owners that 16 brands of commonly sold dog food could cause heart disease.

The Food Drug and Administration (FDA) said that investigations have shown links between popular brands such as Acana and Nature's Variety with cases of dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) in pets. DCM affects the heart muscle of a dog and can cause congestive heart failure. The disease is most commonly found in larger dogs. 

Although the brands of dog food are not being recalled, the FDA believes it "has an obligation to be transparent with the pet-owning public regarding the frequency with which certain brands have been reported."

"We know it can be devastating to suddenly learn that your previously healthy pet has a potentially life-threatening disease such as DCM. That's why the FDA is committed to continuing our collaborative scientific investigation in the possible link between DCM and certain pet foods," said FDA Director of Veterinary Medicine Steven M. Solomon.

This isn't the first time the FDA has warned about the issue. In July 2018, the agency first outlined a link between certain dog food brands and heart disease. The FDA provided an update in February.

From Jan. 1, 2014 to April 30, 2019, the FDA received 524 reports of DCM in pets. There were 515 reports about dogs and nine about cats. 

The brands listed are mostly selling dry dog food which can be left out for hours or days without spoiling, making it convenient for pet owners. Dry dog food is often less expensive than wet food.

Here are the 16 brands linked to heart disease with the number of cases of DCM reported:

  • Acana, 67
  • Zignature, 64 
  • Taste of the Wild, 53
  • 4health, 32
  • Earthborn Holistic, 32
  • Blue Buffalo, 31
  • Nature's Domain, 29
  • Fromm, 24
  • Merrick, 16
  • California Natural, 15
  • Natural Balance, 15
  • Orijen, 12
  • Nature's Variety, 11
  • Nutrisource, 10
  • Nutro, 10
  • Rachael Ray Nutrish, 10

Pet owners can stay updated on the latest animal food recalls from the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA).