My situation is similar to Cassandra’s Story (Nov 2, 2008); but fortunately, not quite as severe….
About 2 weeks ago, I discovered my indoor cat had fleas, so being the weekend, I stopped at the drug store, the vet’s office was closed.
The only brand in the store was Hartz, so after reading the label, decided to purchase it to deal with the situation.
The warning on the label states “For External Use on Cats Only. Do not use on kittens less than 12 weeks old”
That warning label led me to falsely believe it was safe for my cat
My 8 year old, 13 pound healthy female cat “Furby” did not fall into the Hartz (or EPA) “do not use” category.
After applying the drops at the back of the nap(per label instructions), Furby lost her appetite and continuously scratched and licked herself. I attributed this behavior as the result of having fleas
she was poisoned by the flea and tick drops!
She lost alot of her long hair and “looked bad”. On Monday evening (November 3), I noticed her twitching; and Tuesday, concerned about her declining condition, my husband called the vet. We were fortunate to get an appointment within 2 hours and brought a tube of medicine with us.
Our vet’s exact words were: “I’m surprise it’s (Hartz) still on the market. I have been expecting for several years now that this product would be off the market”. He mentioned he has seen several cats come into his office in convulsions after using this product!
After finding the website HartzVictims.org, I was shocked, angered and alarmed at the number of reports.
My question to Hartz Management: How can you sleep at night?? You obviously KNOW your products have an adverse reaction to a great number of animals. There’s an unacceptable level of bad reports regarding the chemicals in your products vs. competitor’s products on the market. I will NEVER buy another Hartz product for any of my pets and will make sure all family and friends don’t buy Hartz either.
Sergeant’s Gold for dogs made my dachshunds miserable. Daisy is 10 and Lily is 1 and within an hour of putting this stuff on them, both were foaming at the mouth and acting like they wanted the stuff on their backs off. They cried and acted very agitated. I gave them a bath with dog shampoo and before we went to bed I gave them Benydryl. Thankfully they slept through the night but in the morning I had the same except they were not foaming at the mouth. I went to the website and it said that the foaming at the mouth is from ingesting it. I had applied it correctly but it does spread on the top of my dogs fur (they are short haired) so that is probably how they got it in their mouth. The website also said to bath them a few times with Dawn so that is what I did. (twice) I also called the company and they said the same about bathing. It is heart breaking to see your babies have to suffer because of something that is supposed to protect them from fleas and ticks. I usually use frontline but was in a hurry and did not want to drive to Petsmart (it is 20 min. away) so I bought this stuff at Walmart. I agree that this stuff should be pulled from the store shelves. I am waiting to hear from my vet to see if there is anything else I can be doing to make my dogs more comfortable. I will never buy anything other than frontline again. Lesson learned. I am just so sorry that my dogs had to suffer at my expense.
I went and bought Sergeants Flea and tick for my two dogs ages 1 (Border Collie) and 14 week old (Australian Cattle Dog). I usually always use frontline but figuring this was a little cheaper and right at the local store I bought it. I put it on and soon after my dogs started vomiting and being restless they were throwing themselves on the floor in total distress. I washed them with dishsoap. I felt sooo terrible I had no idea they could sell stuff that could kill your pet in the store. I took both my dogs to the Brentwood emergency clinic they were great there. My dogs are resting but still a little stressed out this could be a long night. It is really sad that this can be sold in stores. And if you call the company they say some dogs have reactions.
Last weekend, I was unable to pick up Frontline to treat Cassandra for our flea problem. Sunday evening Kmart was open and I stopped to see if they stocked any flea medication. Hartz products were the only line being carried by the store. Since Hartz has long been a well-known pet product name, I purchased their Ultraguard flea drops. I applied the drops to the back of Cassandra’s neck and left the room to wash the product from my hands. When I returned, she was still on the table with a glazy out-of-it look to her eyes and appeared to be drooling. I live in Lancaster, PA and we are blessed to have an excellent 24-hour animal emergency center — PETS, and I rushed her to their facility. The staff immediately treated her by shaving the area and washing it with Dawn detergent. She was noted to have started with tremors but because the product was removed from her skin so quickly, full seizures were avoided. She was sedated and observed for several hours. I learned from the staff at PETS that nine out of ten animals treated with Hartz flea products have reaction to this pure pesticide product.
Back at home, I learned the following from the EPA’s website:
“At EPAs insistence, Hartz Mountain Corp. has agreed to cancel uses of several flea and tick products that may be associated with a range of adverse reactions, including hair loss, salivation, tremors, and numerous deaths in cats and kittens. In the short term, the agreement calls for new labeling of the products. The new labeling will state that the products of concern are not to be used on the most vulnerable animals, including cats and kittens that weigh less than 6 pounds, cats older than 13 years, or kittens less than 5 months old.
Through this agreement, Hartz will voluntarily stop all new production of these products by September 30, 2005 and will not sell or distribute any affected product after December 31, 2005. The company has agreed to a prohibition on sales down to the retail level by March 31, 2006. ”
Cassandra is fourteen. There were no instructions on the product packaging to not use the product on cats over thirteen or I would not have bought the product.
I have been telling all pet owners that I know about this. I noticed today that my Kmart receipt asks for feedback on my shopping experience, so they will be hearing from me on this one. I cannot praise the kindness and professionalism of Doug Bowman, VMD and the staff who were on duty Sunday evening at the Pet Emergency Treatment Services. Without their efforts, I would have foolishly lost my precious Cassandra.