Several years ago, I rented a vacation cabin in the mountains. Pets were allowed, so I took my cat with me. It didn’t take us long to figure out that the cabin was infested with hundreds of hungry, biting fleas. The only place we could find to buy anti-flea supplies was Wal-Mart. I got some Black Flag spray for the cabin and (shudder) a bottle of Hartz flea dip for the cat. I dipped the cat, and he howled and protested loudly. I figured he was just mad the same way he gets mad when I wash him. He ran away and hid under some furniture. We went to bed for the night. In the morning, I was ready to feed and brush the cat. I couldn’t find him. I searched everywhere till I found him crammed into a corner underneath a dresser. He was NOT RIGHT. He was emitting a horrible stink and his entire backside and genital area were horribly swollen. His abdomen was puffy. He had not used the kitty pan for over 12 hours. I grabbed the telephone book in a panic and called random veterinarians until one would agree to see him on an emergency basis. She examined him, treated him with steroids and antibiotics, and directed me to wash him thoroughly to get rid of the Hartz poison. Luckily the treatment worked fast, and later that day he was eating and using the kitty pan normally.
I never bothered to confront the Hartz company, because I knew they would just blow me off. I’ve been getting my flea control products from the catalog of Drs. Foster & Smith ever since and have had no more problems with reactions.