(Cue zombie sound effects.) In a positive move to protect the safety of out pet’s food, the FDA is banning cow brains and spinal cords from pet food. These are the parts of the cow most likely to carry the prions that cause mad cow disease, also known as bovine spongiform encephalopathy, and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease in humans.
So far, dogs appear to be immune to prion caused diseases, however, cats are at risk and can contract feline spongiform encephalopathy. The Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine has a good article on our pets and spongiform encephalopathy.