Speedy Gonzalez

His name was Speedy Gonzalez. I rescued him from a really bad home when he was three months old and he became my companion for the next 10 years. He was a gorgeous orange tabby with very distinctive markings. He tamed my 120 pound German Shepard and they could oftern be found taking a nap together. He was an indoor-outdoor cat and often came home with both fleas and ticks. I usually treated him with products I got from the vet but I had just finished graduate school and had to start paying back my loans. I thought I’d save a few dollars and treat both my cats (Speedy and George Bailey) with the Hartz line of products.
Two days later Speedy was laying on my lap while I was watching television and he started having convulsions. His body twitched a few times and then stopped. He got up and jumped off of the recliner and immediately fell over. He tried to take a few steps but he could not stand up. Over the next couple of days he got worse. If he tried to walk to his litter box or food dishes he would take a few steps and then fall over. After two days he just stopped trying to go anywhere. I would leave for work in the morning and when I got home he would be in the same position in the same place. I had to carry him to his litter box and to his water bowl.
I took him to the vet four days after giving him the flea treatment. The very first thing the doctor asked me was if I gave him any of the Hartz products. I hadn’t put the two incidents together until that point. My cat was dying and I gave him the products that eventually killed him. The doctor diagnosed him as Ataxic, which is the inability to control muscles. The doctor said that this is why he kept falling over and eventually stopped trying to walk. The vet said that Speedy had most likely had a stroke. He was also severely dehydrated. The vet said that he would not get better. The vet gave speedy some fluids intravenously and I took him home for one more night together. The next morning I had Speedy put to sleep. He died in my arms. This was Memorial Day 2003.
Yesterday I was talking with a woman that I work with. She told me that her cat was extremely sick over the weekend. KitKat was having seizures, foaming from the mouth, having uncontrollable body movements and according to his owner appeared to be afraid and panicked about what was happening to him. She told me she took KitKat to the vet and the first thing the vet asked her is if she gave the cat any of the Hartz products. She had put Hartx flea products on her cat the previous night.
I couldn’t beleive it. Four years ago these products killed my cat and the same toxic formula is still on the market. It’s available in every grocery store. How many cats have to die before something is done to remove this product from the market completed. PLEASE! Tell everyone you know who owns a cat, who has ever owned a cat, who has ever thought about owning a cat or knows someone who owns a cat. DO NOT purchase any Hartz products for any reason. Let’s put these Sons of *****es out of business before they take another life.
In Memory of Speedy Gonzalez, July 4, 1993-May 25, 2003

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