Flea drops nearly killed my cat~!

I didnt know it would hurt my cat the way it did~

I thought all flea drops were the same, just that larger amounts were in the dog remedies. since I have 7 dogs and 3 cats, I bought the dog remedy flea drops to use. I assumed that it was packaged according to dosing and that if I used a smaller amount on my cats that it would have been safe~

I assumed that since it was safe to use in small amounts on puppies that using a smaller amount would also work on my cats.

Even though it said not to use on cats, I thought that was merely a selling method they used to get more sales individually for both species, since they were killing the same fleas~

my assumption has nearly cost my cat her life and she is still in the hospital now, on intravenous medications combined to antidote her poisoning, prevent dehydration, alleviate the damage to her central nervous system, giving her musdle relaxants and sedation as well as pain remedy as this is an excruciatingly  painful condition caused by the poisons used in manufacturing the flea drops.

Warning should be more specific instead of just saying :”do not use on cats” the warning should include ‘why’ ~ such as :


HAD IT SAID ‘DEADLY’ I never would have used it assuming it to only kill fleas!

“I NOW SEE THAT MANY PEOPLE MAKE THE SAME MISTAKE~ SO THE GOVERNMENT NEEDS TO MAKE THESE FLEA DROP COMPANIES PRINT A LARGER STRONGER WARNING ON THEIR PRODUCTS.Complying by using microscopic letter that most people can not even read, they need instead to make plainer, stronger warnings or not be allowed to sell such deadly products publicly~”…Ave Hurley,  July 1,2009

Read more about this topic at : http://avehurley.wordpress.com/2009/07/01/common-flea-drops-will-quickly-kill-your-cat/

64 Replies to “Flea drops nearly killed my cat~!”

  1. Hmm…notice how your assumption did so much damage.

    It said “do not use on cats”. You clearly read the box & noticed this. Yet you used it on your cat anyway. I agree that big companies cause some big problems, but they can’t be blamed for people not following instructions. …

    Note: This post was edited for content by moderator

  2. I didnt know about the ‘do not put on cats’ til I read about it online after my cat was already in the hospital.

    What I was referring to is that IF it only said ‘do not put on cats’ that is was not a good enough warning since the stuff is lethal to cats so it should say as much and not in microprint hidden with a barrage of other hard to see words as most of these cartons write too small, at least for my vision.

    Also I need to mention that the package I used was a single dose tube on a card that was written in french or spanish that I got a discount dollar store near the mall in Big Flats which is 50 miles away from my home. It also want Hartz brand but the Hartz forum was the first forum I found that addressed the problem.

    Yes, too that people dont always follow instructions properly. I am not the only one in this either as I couldnt read the language it was in, even if it had been in English as the lettering was so tiny you need a magnifying glass to decipher it. The illustration on the card showed to put it behind the neck, so I did.

    The responsiblity of the manufacturer however should be to not sell lethal poisons like that over the counter the way they do. If they put in large letters to not use around children as it causes central nervous system damage on kids or cats ~ how many people do you think would buy it?

    Just the drops on my fingers that I put on the cat, even though I washed my hands afterwards, made my fingertips tingly and a little numb and later I had a bad taste in my mouth and was nauseated. Imagine what would happen to a kid kissing a cat or puppy on the spot where the stuff was applied. The VET said once it is on the animal, it enters the sebaceous glands and infects all the fur, so some animals even have to be shaved to decontaminate them~

    This stuff with a permethrin deriviative base is really deadly.how many people have bio degrees that can recognize the names of the deriviatives even?They are all bad~ and there are not studies that have any stats on long term effects on dogs either, so what damage this does to dogs may not be immediately apparent but certainly there is a threat.

    We still need to deal with fleas, so now I am seeing online that there are nonpoisonous remedies out there .Why doesnt Hartz, Sargent and the other big shot companies that make their money on our pets, do the right thing and use non~lethal ingredients in their over the counter products?

    Advatage and Frontline make the safer product accordint to the vet, although they are more expensive. Maybe if there was a bit more competition between suppliers the prices would be lowered for all and our pets would be safe.

    I cant afford this $485 vet bill but had to pay it at the time of service which was before my landlord comes to collect the rent. Now I am totally stressed as to how to explain to him I had to use my rent money to pay for a domestic cat that is just a plain old cat that was given to me whose mother abandoned it by the barn~

    Most people say I should have had her put down if I couldnt afford the vet, but I had not clue that 48 hours at a vet clinic for a bath , observation and medication could cost so much. I had to pay it once it was done but was not informed ahead of time as to the cost or that they wouldnt allow any payment plan.

    My summer is ruined as I only live on $700 a month so $485 has caused me a great hardship which is why I am now trying to cash in my artwork and supplies to raise money to pay my bills. I have a fundraiser listed on my website that I will give away more value in art for any donation that will help me to recoup what I need to at least pay my rent.
    http://tiny.cc/HelpCat but realize I probably wont get any help. Only one friend gave me $20 towards it so I will give her some artprints. I have materials to do and sell my art but live in the country and since I just got started online I dont actually have any business yet. My kids call it my hobby.

    Manufacturers have to take into account that people aren’t all rocket scientists and it is their duty to provide safe products so even if someone were to not use it according to directions that it shouldnt be lethal, or so damaging as to cause such high vet bills.


    I went by the picture on the flea drop card that showed puppies as we have some. I used the drops on the puppy but when I saw the cat scratching like crazy, I squeezed the last 2 drops out of the tube and put them on her since I needed to get her a new flea collar on the 1st which would have been the next day~I didnt even think it was enough to help her but thought if it repelled the fleas even for a night that it would be worth trying.

    I admit I knew nothing about how flea drops work prior to this horror. I thought it was nontoxic and a repellent, not poison that would attack an animals central nervous system as it does.

    My son called the company that makes it and was told that only 1:10,000 die but that many do have allergic reactions and that they would pay the vet bill IF he sent the tube in so they can check the vat numbers.

    I had given the empty tube to the vet tech and it has been since disposed of so I couldnt get it back, so I cant submit a claim to that company now. They did say however that their new packaging does have a warning in red letters to not use on cats.

    What I got was in a discount store which means it was their old packaging~ sold off in clearance, since they were compelled to put warnings on their product and the one I got was meant for sale in Canada but ended up in that store in upstate NY.

  3. Guess what people, I have used Hartz In Control on my two cats for over 6 months and not have had any problems. They are happy kitties. Stop trying to make a lawyer case out of something that is nothing!!!

  4. I used the product that specifically said for use on cats, and it still happened. I just lost my cat over the holiday weekend. The smallest of my three cats, a 5 lb Persian named Maggie Mae, started shivering and couldn’t walk straight. We called the emergency number for the vet, and got him to come in on the holiday. He attempted to save her with fluids, treatment, and warming her. Her temp was down to 93, when it should have been 105 to 106. Her red blood cells were down to 10% when they should have been 30%. She didn’t make it. The vet said that this brand is know to do this, but that when you call the emergency number on the package it directs you to the ASPCA. He said that since the ASPCA supported the Hartz brand, they don’t record and report the complaints. It’s outrageous… they’re allowing pure poison to be put on the shelves available for any unsuspecting person to buy.


  5. While I have seen a response from a lady who uses drops that have not harmed her cats, I say to that lady she is one of the lucky ones~ My Vet said that not all cats are the same and some go years without showing signs of being poisoned, however this stuff is poison and long term use DOES damage a cat’s central nervous system.

    There are currently non-poisonous remedies already available but their prices are still higher because t

    The safe meds are not mass produced at the level that Hartz or Sargents can produce and sell theirs.

    Now if they were to change their ingredients to ones that were not potentially lethal to animals as well as pose any potential threat to children and elderly [who often handle pets] then the problem could be solved!

    Its corporate greed to use dangerous chemicals to solve the flea problems with cheaper lethal ingredients instead of safe ones.They say they would rather pay individual pet bills instead of changing ingredients as they think only 1:10,000 are affected. How can we know if that number is accurate or if YOU who havent yet been affected were to become that 1:10,000 would you not then also become alarmed?

    If you were to see first hand in your own pet how horrible the results of a reaction are, you would change your mind and never use those drops or any like them ever again.

    I have not spoken of any law suit as that is not my concern, since I was the one who put the drops on my cat and I was the one who bought them in the first place, not knowing how dangerous they can be and are.Besides even to be reimbursed for medical costs, I cant be as the vet tech disposed of the tube the flea drops came in, so I can not make any lawsuits.

    I just want to warn others of the danger of this poison and spare some other poor cats and dogs the needless suffering they would go through as well as the heartache I went through as I saw how much my cat suffered and nearly died.

    She would have died without hospitalization and treatment to undo the effects of the flea drops, which she had only 2 drops, but the vet said even one drop can be lethal.

    These products need to have their ingredients changed and the packaging should have skull & cross bone could be fatal warnings on them~!

  6. To Libby

    I am so very sorry to hear of you cat passing. It is always hard to seal with loss, but somehow this just makes it worse.

    I urge you to file complaints about this. The information you need is on our Need Help page. It’s the only way we will get this stopped.

    Against Hartz

  7. As each hour passes since my cat went through this I can not get it out of my mind and am becoming increasingly outraged that this is occurring in this day and age and in our country, where you would think we had the best in treating anything especially fleas on domestic pets!~

    Hartz and Sargent ,Bansect and others are to blame since they create and sell these products and obviously are aware of the deadly potential of these products~

    Whether or not you are a pet owner or pet lover this is outrageous and should be made illegal and there should be criminal penalties for even placing these products on the open market as they are a health threat not only to animals but to those using them.

    Any small child or person with an impaired immune system can be harmed by these products. How many people going to emergency rooms after handling these products would even know to mention it to their doctors? How much is too much in diagnosing these to be the root cause of maybe triggering other health problems?

    I have Lupus and a few other diseases. I can not even walk down the isles that contain pesticides in Walmart without my tongue getting a wierd numbness and tingling and my heart soon begins to palpitate.It happens whenever I am near pesticides and I can not even go into a house that has been exterminated as it makes me sick. I am not the only one that is sensitive to pesticides.

    Now after I placed those oily drops on my cats fur and rubbed them in on her, I went to wash my hands with soap but still smelled the drops on my hands afterwards.They get into your skin THAT fast!

    Still I didnt even know that what they were using to repel and kill fleas on animals was something that could be toxic or lethal to the pets or that it could affect humans too.I never would have even considered that since they are sold publically in almost any store!

    Now hindsight is 20/20 but I am out $485 which is one consideration that in this day and age when everything is so expensive and our economy is so bad that there would even be threats out there as are presented by Hartz and others who manipulate the public into believing their products are safe when in fact they are lethal.

    They make their fortune on pet owners trying to care for their pets.People trust their name and use their products, just like I did.

    People make mistakes, instructions aren’t always followed correctly but that is all part of the variable of considerations when they place products like this on the market. They have researchers who gamble on the odds of how many will actually know the reactions are from their products and how many people will go to a vet to remedy the illness that ensues and howmany people will assume the reaction is something else and let a pet die rather than go to a vet and how many people will actually bring the animal to a vet and pay for the needed life saving treatment .

    I am sure there are some who may not have the reaction the first day of using a flea collar or flea drops so that when their pet does have the reaction, easily can mistake it for rabies and simply have the animal put down. My son initially thought my cat had rabies, but I knew that since she has never been outdoors that was impossible which made me think of what could have caused the sudden onset and I knew it had to be the drops as that was the only thing different in my poor cat’s life that day, as she still ate the same food and just plays indoors all the time.

    As soon as I suspected the flea drops I used my search engine and put in ‘flea drops poison cats’ and found dozens of articles and so I then looked for symptoms and antidotes but saw that vet intervention was needed immediately so my son caged the cat while we made calls to find one who would open at night,[seems vet emergencies always happen at night or holdidays!] Just the ER appt with his Vet tech was $120~!

    My cat was hospitalized, bathed and had IV treatment for 48 hours and then released as soon as she was able to eat and walk. She is still wobbly as this poison caused Central Nervous System damage but is expected to recover fully since she was treated within a few hours of the drops being used.

    I found out that the hair loss she recently experienced down near her tail was also from her old flea collar that she was wearing. Now that the collar is off, new hair growth has already begun~!

    It amazes and yet angers me that these pet products are really poisonous and toxic and potentially lethal to the pets they are supposed to be helping.


  8. You know what, Angela and Nicole, I wish Dani and Josh hadn’t posted your response. Mostly because it makes me angry, but also it makes me sad. I’m sad because you are obviously not animal lovers. If you were, you’d know that this site is only here to spread the word about how dangerous these products can be, and to try to get Hartz to use a safer chemical. And as an animal lover, who wouldn’t support that? So you’re obviously not. Nicole, I feel sorry for your two cats. I really hope that some day you’re not looking at them and thinking “if only I had listened”.

    No one on here is trying to make a “lawyer case” out of it, which, for your ignorance, is called a class action lawsuit. We’re not looking for a get-rich-quick scheme. We’re looking for compassion, and to help keep this from happening to other innocent pets.

    But it also makes me angry, very angry. How dare you come on here to rub it in our faces that your cats are fine, whereas ours are not. And in my case, mine is dead. This isn’t a “customer review” website looking for how you like using these products. As it says right in the name, it’s for victims. It’s for those of us who had to look at our poor pets, so obviously hurting, and knew that it was us who put them in that pain. You didn’t hold your precious pet, the same one whose fur I cried into when my heart was broken, the same one that followed me through the house trying to bat at the little ties on my shoes, as she was shaking and having seizures. You didn’t have to watch her try to walk when she could only stumble. You didn’t have to listen to her cry, knowing that it was the sound of pure pain. You didn’t have to look into her eyes and see pain and confusion when you had been the one who’s taken care of her for five years, knowing that it was your fault she was suffering. And you weren’t the one that gave her a final hug, and signed the authorization for the vet to put her down after he told me she wouldn’t recover for this.

    So shame on you for rubbing it in our faces. We don’t need your “ha ha ha, my pet is fine” or your condescending “you didn’t follow directions”. Either you’re very ignorant towards the feelings of others, or your just plain not a good person. Regardless, go spread your venom elsewhere.

  9. You said yourself that the label read Do not give to cats….Take responsibility for your actions!!! You willingly gave your sweet cat something not designed for him. Blame is all on YOU!

  10. It said “DO NOT use on cats” Why would it have to say “Deadly to cats” before you would follow written instructions? Hartz didn’t nearly kill your cat, you did. Don’t buy any over the counter topical flea products, they’re very harsh and even the one for cats can be dangerous. My friends cat died from Biospot. Buy prescription treatment from your vet and follow the instructions on the box.

  11. Let me clarify a few things. When I wrote my first post I was upset as things were then ongoing and still in crisis.

    I had bought some Sargents flea drops a few weeks earlier that WERE for cats. I had also bought some HARTZ 3 pack that was for puppies & dogs. They were put into a draw in anticipation of flea season.

    In May I had purchased flea collars for each of our 3 cats. My son was going to get flea collars for his puppies & dogs.

    My cat never has been outdoors, however my sons 2 cats had been. I thought the flea collars were going to be enough for them.

    The card that the single dose Sargents was on had been glanced at and opened 3 weeks earlier and was removed. Only the tube was in the drawer. I wasnt going to use drops til mid summer when fleas are more a problem here and when I thought the 90 day flea collars would have expired.

    Those collars were not on a month when I noticed the 2 cats that had been out had fleas on them anyway. My cat plays with my sons 2 cats. The puppies usually stay on the enclosed back porch and do not run loose in the house as they get too rambunctious so are only in the living room when my son brings them in to play but then puts them back in their room or outside in the yard.

    I didnt have the card to refer to at the time I put the drops on the cats. It was a white tube so I know it was the Sargeants brand. I was wrong when I said and thought I had used the tube that was for puppies as my son just showed me that the puppies drops are in a brown tube~

    Why I am saying that packing should say DEADLY TO CATS is because the Vet told me that you dont have to put them on cats, but even when you put them on your dogs, IF they have any interaction with the cats, that it can still kill them.

    The drops are that deadly~ The drops dont just kill fleas as they admit it affects their central nervous system. The poison has a cumulative effect on the animal wearing it and in time will cause problems even if subtle at first, these poisons will have an effect on your dog as well as anything or anyone that comes in contact with the dog. A cat doesnt even have to lick a dog, although often pets will lick one another and that too is a way the cat can become poisoned.

    You miss the point of what and why I initially wrote. I never used flea drops before this incident. I said that even if it said DO NOT PUT ON CATS that is not a sufficient warning.

    I notice that now the Sargeants flea drop 3 pack does now have a warning in red letters on their card. Thats a start, but now after seeing videos and reading articles about the poisons used for cats and dogs, that those including toxic pesticides are too dangerous to use and should be banned.

    I assumed the drops were safe. I was wrong. I didnt think they’d sell something that could be so lethal to some animals.

    I used a single dose tube and only put 2 drops on my cat and a couple drops on my sons 2 cats without telling him, as he didnt want to use drops. He planned of purchasing some pill his vet sells that wards off fleas.

    I just wanted to get rid of the fleas.

    My son’s white cat was totally unaffected by the same drops.
    His grey cat, the largest of the 3 has seemed alright but has been vomiting every day since she had the drops, so I have caught her and washed her neck off.

    Turns out the white tube of Sargents I used which I thought was supposed to be for the puppies was actually the one that was for the cats since my son showed me all the tubes for the puppies are still in the drawer and unopened.
    I thought I used the puppies tube. I have bad eyesite and can not read the microscopic printing on those cards and never saw the warnings on the actual cards.

    I saw online after my cat was in the hospital that cards for dogs say to not put on cats, so that was what I was writing about and may have mispoke in connecting the fact that I now know that dog drop cards say to not put on cats, but I think they need bigger warnings such as KILLS CATS or TOXIC TO CATS

    Reading more accounts I now believe that these products should be banned all together~ since they kill both dogs and cats and are also toxic to humans.

    Even though I used my left hand index and middle fingers to put the drops on the cat, I washed my hands with soap and water afterwards, the smell of the drops still remained on my finger tips. It absorbs in that fast~! Those 2 fingers had a tingly feeling from the drops and the next few days, my own two fingers twitched uncontrollably. I showed my son as they wouldnt stop for a few days!~ He said it was just a coincidence, but after reading all I have now read, I think it was the drops that caused the twitching as I am sensitive to pesticides and didnt know the drops had toxic ones in it.I thought they were just a repellent.

    There are websites that sell organically safe flea repellents and that is where I will probably shop next since I think my cat like me must be sensitive to pesticides as she is still losing fur after the Vet put Advantage or Advantix on her saying it is safer than Hartz. She is however showing new hair growth on the one bald spot she got near her tail.

    If you are unaware that these products cause fur to fall out, you can see videos on this site that show they not only cause fur to fall out but with continual usage can cause aweful sores as well.

    Why defend an unsafe product??? It is immaterial whether I used the right or wrong tube as both are equally toxic. Many people toss out wrappers or cards that things come on. Many people dont read microscopic directions or ones in other languages, Which by the way the white tube came in packaging meant for another country and was not in English~ so ended up in a Dollar Store discount for $1 which was why I bought it.

    That $1 tube has cost me $485 in vet bills now~! The card has been long discarded and the Vet disposed of the tube so all I can do now is warn others not to use the ‘crap’

    It should be illegal to sell such potentially dangerous flea treatment remedies – may as well shoot the dog or cat then to use those products as they are deadly and cause a long slow painful death. My cat was saved thank God by fast veterinary intervention.

    My landlord said he has more than 20 cats at the barn to choose from for a new one up the road that he felt I should have let my cat die and not pay a vet. Thats his opinion but since I put the damn drops on the cat I couldnt let her suffer and so I did bring her to the vet and spent most of my monthly disability check to save her.He is mad that I am short on his rent and still owe him money because I paid the vet.So, it has caused me some hardship and stress over what the actual trauma of what happened to my poor little cat.To look at her you might say it wasnt worth saving her as she is just a little 6 pound mixbreed, but she is sweet and lovable and deserves to live. I just want to see her get well again and regrow all her fur.

    I also want to warn others not to use Sargents or Hartz.


  12. Oh man, I cannot even imagine going through this. If it makes you feel any better, I work at a Petsmart and I talk to people literally every day about the horrible side effects of these products. I get yelled at every time for it too, because we are technically not supposed to unsell products. But you know what? The well being of peoples’ pets is my JOB, not to sell poison on Hartz behalf. And even from a business standpoint, every single person I’ve warned about these products has thanked me sincerely. Now they trust me and will come back to that store and ask me which food to buy, which toys are the best, etc etc etc because they know I will not BS them.

    There are people fighting this fight and even though I haven’t experienced this with my own cat, or my foster cats, it breaks my heart to read stories like yours and Libby’s. So it is a mission of mine to make sure that nobody walks out of my store with OTC flea meds in their bag.

  13. Thankyou Petsmart worker~! The more people that are made aware of these animal killer products the better.
    We as pet owners when wanting to get rid of the pesty fleas just want to find relief for our pets and ourselves as these infest our homes as well. I have been continuing to check out non-toxic remedies online and think if enough people are made aware that maybe companies will start to mass produce the safer products and hopefully one day thats what will be on the shelves of pet stores.
    The government could step in too and make tighter regulations so that Hartz & Sargents and the other big shot sellers of pet flea removal products to make them safe and ban the use of the toxins they now use.
    I guess most would think the problem is benign in the grand scheme of things, but it is major to those it happens to.So many people look down on those who are into animal rights but this is really something different as it is for pet owners and their pets well being and the right agencies should oversea making these products safe.

  14. Oh man… I wish I had known about this…. I noticed my babies (a puppy and a cat) had fleas. I went to Walmart, saw the Hartz and got it. I put it on the cat right away, but the puppy, I didn’t know if she was 4 lbs yet. I just put it on her today.

    I hadn’t seen the cat much in the past week, I knew she was eating (man can that cat eat) but when I saw her last night my heart broke – she’s a medium haired cat, but her hair has gotten very short, and I saw these little bumps on her neck. I thought it was still fleas, so today I got a flea comb and start combing, but it was horrible. I also got some first aid spray and sprayed the sores on her neck.

    After googling a bunch of things, I came across this website. I really, really hope that since its been two weeks that she won’t get any worse.

    This makes my heart sick.

  15. Two weeks for my other 2 cats and I see the same area near the tail on my bigger grey cat has gotten bald! The white cat is long haired and fluffy so I havent seen any bald spots but she has left clumps of hair all over so I am sure she has her bare spots too~ My smallest cat is the one that had the immediate reaction which nearly cost her life and she had emergency vet care that came to $485 – almost my whole months disability check~ but she still is losing fur and to look at her and consider the cost, would say I was crazy to have her saved, but the fur will grow back in time and she should be alright, thank God.
    There are non toxic flea remedies you can find online. Even though they are $5-6 more than at Walmart, at least they wont kill your pet or cost a vet bill like I got and some others have had higher ones than me~ and stil there was a gamble as to whether the pet would even survive. Some have lost pets even with the vet care as it was just too late or the animal too compromised
    Good luck with your cat & puppy, but I would at least call the vets and ask what might be good to treat the sores since that flea drops have gotten into her sebaceous glands and work for 4-5 weeks so she may get worse . I am not certain but heard someone said they used benedryl, but I would check with the vet first because you dont need to compound the situation. I wish I had checked first before ever using any of these drops, as this was my first time using them too.
    [definitely the last] But if you cat has sores, it might be cheaper to have a vet deal with her now than if it gets worse since it is glands involved, the sores can potentially pop up elsewhere since the reaction starts inside and works it way out. There are pictures on the site of horrendous sores some animals developed that maybe looked okay while the damage was under the skin and then one day popped open maybe,who knows for sure with the crap they put in the drops as to how much devastation it will cause. I am still watching my cat and my sons cats to be sure they dont show any more symptons but none have sores thank God, but definite fur loss.

  16. Alomost everything we use on a regular basis has some sort of warning on it, depending on what it is you should read and heed all labels. People this is common sense, i would hate for something like this to have happened to your child, for instance if your small child is sick and the only medication you have says “Do Not Give to Children Under ___ Age” you would not still give this to your child if it were in fact under that age. Same principal, so next time use whatever intelligence God gave you, and follow directions to the “T”, otherwise bad things happen.

  17. First of all, as a veterinarian, I have personally experienced flea/tick preventative toxicities, not only with cats, but also with dogs. It always hits a tender spot for me because one of my first after-hours emergencies was with a dog that had been bathed in Happy Jack flea dip. The owners had been away on a summer vacation, picked their dogs up from the kennel, and discovered fleas on their dogs. Of course, they made the assumption that the dogs contracted the fleas from the kennel.

    SIDE NOTE: A common misconception of owners who do not understand the flea life-cycle. Fleas actually form a cocoon and live in your carpet for long periods and remain dormant until activity occurs in the house, to which they then hatch out. So in lay terms: you go away, flea cocoons form, you come home from vacation, fleas hatch out, and viola…your dog has fleas.

    Anyway, they decided to go get some flea dip and treat their dogs that evening. Of their 3 dogs, only one reacted to the medication. The dog first started having muscle fasciculations, so they called Happy Jack. The customer service told them that it was a “very safe product and their dog could consume the entire bottle undiluted without causing toxicity.” Because of those reassurances, the owners decided to wait. However, the dog became increasingly more distressed and started having seizure activity. They then called the clinic I worked at, were referred to our pager number, and I was paged at 10:00 PM. I met them at the clinic, bathed the animal in a stripping shampoo, started a muscle relaxer, administered valium for the seizures, and started on IV fluids with valium in the bag for a continuous rate infusion. The dog relaxed and I proceeded to put notes in for the case. After about 30 minutes the dog proceeded to enter a grand mal seizure. After attempting to control the seizure using IV phenobarbital with no avail I then attempted to induce a pentobarbital coma; however, he was completely unresponsive to any medication I gave him! I had to call the owners and recommend euthanasia because he would not respond. The euthanasia solution we use is pentobarbital, the aforementioned medication. I had to use 5 times the normal lethal dose to euthanize. The owners decided to do a necropsy on their pet to obtain information for a lawsuit against Happy Jack flea products. The pathology report read that the dog had 30 times the toxic amount of pyrethrins in his liver!! I was appalled and horrified that this type of a product is widely sold. It’s a shame for sure.

    I do believe that the products should have better warnings on them, but I also believe that people are simply uneducated as to the safety issues related to these products. There’s a reason why they are over-the-counter and not sold through veterinary practices. One, they don’t work; and two, they aren’t safe.

    It saddens me when I see Frontline Plus being placed in the same categories as these unsafe products. Please note that Frontline has a Good Housekeeping Seal. To obtain this rating it has to be proven a VERY safe product not only to the pet, but to people as well. Yes, it is expensive, but it’s worth the price. Especially if using it would save you the $400+ veterinary bill to treat the toxicity…and may even save you the death of your pet.

    Do not blame the veterinarian for the bill…and I assure you that at least in my practice we provide an estimate so as to not surprise you with a large bill in the end. However, we too do not allow payment plans. Only because people have taken advantage of this and we have several unpaid bills at our practice. Bottom line: it is a business and has to have in-coming income to be able to stay open and provide health care to your pets. It doesn’t make us uncaring, nor are we “out to get your money.” I care very much and I take my cases home with me. The stress alone from these cases takes a toll on my health and my relationships with family and friends. It’s a tough roll to play indeed. The case above happened over 3 years ago and still is a fresh sting for me. Often we are stuck in a precarious position, wanting to help, but not able to because of financial constraints of the owner. As for me, I do “give” services away. There are things I don’t charge for, like a free nail trim, free fine needle aspirate, or a free cystocentesis, etc. Stuff that goes unnoticed by the owners who still complain in the end about the bill…if they only knew.

    In summary, the products don’t have the best warning labels, people won’t always follow instructions (or they’ve heard of the friend that uses Frontline Plus for a big dog and splits it among their cats all the time, which by the way is perfectly sage, but the person makes the misconception that this applies to ALL flea products), and these unsafe products really have no purpose on the shelves anyway. People are always going to try and go the cheaper route rather then get the efficacious medications from their veterinarian that are more expensive. They don’t see the bigger picture and that they will actually save more money in the long run by investing in a product that actually works and is safe.

  18. Dear Dr.Bill ~
    Thankyou for your explanation in the treatments and how easily it is for owners to assume that larger doses can often be split among pets, as that was my assumption as well.
    Now I didnt blame the Vet for the large bill so much as with any medical things extra treatments or meds will raise a bill for people as well as pets. My only problem was not being prepared for such a huge bill for my cat and I am now behind on my rent and my EFT car insurance went through leaving my bank account overdrawn – neither the vet’s fault, except if they would have allowed me to pay in 2 payments I could have taken care of both. My landlord was annoyed as he has many animals and said he would have just given me a new cat, missing the point that I wanted to save the cat since she is my pet and it wasnt her fault she had a bad reaction, but my fault for putting the drops on her .

    The flea drops didnt seem to harm our 2 larger cats significantly [ some vomiting & a little hair loss] but my cat is the one who had the reaction. Now they did use Advantix drops on my cat before she came home.

    I cant help but wonder if she may be allergic to the Advantix as her fur loss is now increasing again,where it seemed to be getting new growth when she first came home, [down near the tail on her back where she had began to go bald ]but now her fur again looks dry and brittle and more fur is falling out again!

    The vet said the Advantix and Frontline were safe but they put on the Advantix on my cat and it is supposed to last for up to 6 weeks.

    So does that mean I can expect her to keep losing fur for 6 weeks and then it will grow back?

    She looks pathetic right now.She also is having a stronger than usual ‘heat’ cycle which seems to be causing her to lose even more fur as she is rubbing on everything.
    I want to get her ‘fixed’ but with the $485 I paid for her last visit, I simply do no have the money for it now.

    I also see that she was treated with methocarbomal which is the same muscle relaxant I use!
    They did however give her an IV for 48 hours and I’d imagine some order meds not listed besided the methocarbomal but sent a 1/2 tablet home with her when I picked her up.

    So Frontline would be the one you would recommend then?

    Thanks for your help~

  19. AveHurley,
    I assume you mean Advantage and not Advantix, as K-9 Advantix is also not supposed to be used on cats/toxic to cats…again, there is confusion because both are Bayer products and similarly named. A product our practice chooses not to have on the self for cats for that reason (the Advantage, that is…we do carry K-9 Advantix for dogs and Advantage for dogs). We instead carry Revolution for cats and Frontline Plus for cats. Both, I recommend. I prefer the Revolution for cats since it also is a heartworm, intestinal parasite, and ear mite preventative and usually the same/similar price as the Frontline Plus (more bang for your buck). Although, it is one you must use a feline dose for and not a canine dose and split. Frontline Plus is THE ONLY PRODUCT where you could place the entire large dog tube on a small cat and it would not harm the cat. And has THE ONLY good housekeeping seal of approval. Although, both are topical products and sometimes hair loss is a reaction to those products. A reaction that is not life-threatening, but is a nuisance. However, just because there is hair loss with one product doesn’t mean different products with different agents will cause the same reaction. If I were you, I would try both Revolution one month and Frontline Plus the next and see which one suits your needs best. I hope that helps…and I’m glad your cat survived. Bottom line, that is the most important part of your story: that you do have your companion in the end. Unfortunately, for some that is not the case.

  20. Hi Dr.Bill~ You are right~ My Vet must have put the Advantage on my cat. I thought she said Advantix over the phone but it may have just been the phone connection.It was put it on before my son picked her up from the animal hospital.
    I’ll be sure to look for the Revolution for cats, next month after this dose wears off. She is back in full swing, only her fur looks dry & a bit bald down above her tail area.
    I originally thought I had used puppy drops since the tube was out of the wrapper & my eyes are bad, but my son told me a few days after it happened that only the tube for cats was open and showed me the tubes he planned on using on his dogs were still in the drawer sealed. He isnt using them either now because of what happened with the cats & after reading all the side effects. I had put a single dose meant for 1 cat spread out on 3- The other 2 didnt react like my cat did. I can only imagine had I put a whole tube on her!
    I am very glad my cat survived she is back at full energy now. Both she and our other female cats were going to get neutered this month before this happened. Now we will catch up on this months bills and save over again and hopefully next month get them neutered.If they were ‘fixed’ they wouldnt want to go outside as much as they try to sneak out now & maybe wouldnt get so many fleas.
    Thanks for your valuable info. 🙂 Ave

  21. while hartz is a terrible product, I’m sorry but this is entirely your fault. do you not believe your coffee is hot even though the cup says it’s hot? next time don’t cheap out.

  22. Sorry but your statement is stupid~Acting ignorantly by not having the wrapper at the time to read nor bothering to check on toxicity due to an assumption that a product is safe since it is being sold, is one thing~! Many people dont read small print or cant as their eyesight might make it impossible. Still when you look for a product to get rid of fleas on your animal, you do just that, you dont go hunting to seek an education on it til after something has gone wrong. All I tried to accomplish was flea removal from my cat- I wasnt seeking to poison her nor put her through that terrible suffering she endured because of the chemicals those manufacturers put into their product that caused her reaction.
    So you may judge by the temperature of the cup, but you are assuming the coffee was safe, just hot but your dont know whats inside the cup so your analogy is stupid.Had you known the gun was loaded…..?? So all you do is look to cast more blame on the ignorance of knowing there was something wrong in the flea drops while Sargents & Harts already know their stuff is lethal~ They know so it is their sin that remains~ if you want to look for who to blame – it is the one who deliberately sets out to deceive which are those companies by using cheap product ingredients so they make a bigger profit while setting people and their animals up for these reactions.

    My cat lived, but many dont. The poisons used need to be banned~

  23. I agree with Ave…

    It happens often, and the print is FINE print. The products shouldn’t even make it on the shelves. And often in cases that I see, owners have actually placed the appropriate product on the pet (ie, dog product on dog; cat on cat) and it STILL causes toxicity. In those cases it is entirely NOT the owner’s fault. But, in the instances where an owner has placed the inappropriate product on their pet, they shouldn’t be blamed. Those owners are feeling guilty enough and a sick pet is punishment enough for them (a punishment that I don’t think they should have to endure). You have no idea the agony they are in when they bring their pet in and know that they’re the ones that placed the product on their pet. At least with the hot coffee all you have to deal with are some pretty bad burns, but not death, which is often the case. The products are unsafe, and continually proven unsafe. They shouldn’t be marketed for pets. How many pets have to die or suffer from seizures before these products are pulled from the market? It’s a shame…

  24. Thanks Dr. Bill~
    You being a professional and having dealt more with the results of flea drop poisonings are very credible and know the truth.
    I just contacted my State Representative Matt Baker’s office and while his assistant said I could bring in the documents to show what this does to animals and have Matt present legislation for this in Pennsylvania to ban the permethrins, they suggested I bring it to my Congressman to present it to Congress as it is not frivolous as some legislation, but recommended trying it at the national level since it is a national problem and should be banned in our country.
    I was informed that if people write to their Congressmen that this can actually be considered and laws can be passed to stop this from occurring in the future, so I am contacting my Congressman’s office and going to start and recommend that everyone who has been affected do likewise and contact their Congressmen.
    Since there are so many millions of pet owners who are unaware, it is better to work at getting this stuff banned at a legal level through Congress.
    I will compile as many stats from the internet as I can this week and prepare a file that can be submitted to my Congressman and I will make duplicate files that can be used by others who want to submit to their congressmen and post it here when it is completed so others can do likewise, but dont have to wait for me, we each can tell our stories to our Congressmen and take it from there.
    I am sure they will need expert testimonies to from people like you Dr Bill.
    My parents had worked on legislation back in the 70’s against LNG in NYC and initially started small but their movement worked with many people participating at the same time and they were called in for Congressional meetings and laws were changed nationally as a result, so it begins small with those affected and then grows so we can make a change if we start with our Congressmen and then continue complaining til the toxins are removed from pet care products.
    Big business doesn’t always win out and we need to stop them from what they are doing to our pets~
    Ave Hurley

  25. My fellow Furry Lovers of America,
    We must get this garbage off the shelves!!!!!

    Wow Wendy,

    That was harsh. I understand where you are comming from though, she did put a dog product on her cat. In reality that fact probably would not have made a difference so cut this person some slack. It is not easy when your lil furry gets sick.

    Here is my Hartz “SPOT ON” story. I had a cat Budda was my boys name. He was a Persian. I still get all choked up, excuse me, OK I put the Spot On, on my Boy and from the second I did, he started screaming.

    I only ever heard him make that horrifing sound twice. Once with the Spot On and the Last when he was being killed. The point I am making is, SPOT ON Kills. The poor furries know it that is why they start screaming!!! Oh god it is an awful sound. It is made worse by the fact that it is totally preventable. Tell everyone you know not to buy anything from Hartz.. I have read horror stories from Dog owners, Horse Owners and Cat owners. It is NOT that ladies fault. It did not matter that she used the product for dogs.

    Anyway I was using the “right” product for cats and for his weight. Lucky for me I immediately picked him up and dumped dish soap on his neck to wash it off. Dish soap works best on oil. He was fine after a day.

    My mother on the other hand has a cat, names Coalie. She used the right Hartz product on him and he screamed. She took him in the shower and used shampoo on him. It did not come off.
    It has been two months now and Coalie is suffering so bad it would break your heart. Poor lil fella. sniffle. Coalie has bumps all over the area where we put the product around his neck. His jaw is swollen. He has lost much of his hair all over his neck and head. My mother does not know what to do. The reason people buy the Hartz product is because it is cheaper then the Vet’s Products. My mother felt if wal mart sold it, it must be safe. NOT SO…

    My mother lives on SS and cannot afford to take Coalie back to the vet. I am currently in contact with Sumitomo the Japanese parent company to Hartz to see if they will refund the vet costs. Then I can lend my mom the money to take him back to the vet. I wish I could just give it to her but I have bills too. Man this is such a bummer. Walmart should NOT have this product on their shelves. They are my next contact.

    If anyone out there knows of a remedy. Something we can do for poor coalie please tell me. We don’t know what to do.
    The Doctor gave him a shot but it did not help.

    If I only knew exactly what organ this was affecting? I could get him on some kitty natural cure. OH GAWD I hate feeling helpless.

    Can you help??
    Coalies Auntie

  26. I dont know what to do! I just did the same thing and my kitten in shaking terribly I need help! I washed her with johnsons baby shampoo but she is still shaking!!!! HElp me please!

  27. Dawn Dishwashing detergent is recommended to remove the oil based concentrated flea drops. I originally thought I put the dog drops on my cat and wrote the first post saying that I did, but in reality the loose open tube in the drawer where they were kept was the cat drops from Sargents. My son later showed me that the dog drops has never been opened or used.

    Either way both products are deadly.

    My cat was treated with methocarbomal 500mg divided in 1/4’s 2x a day for the tremors and Diazepam. You cant get this over the counter but need to contact a vet immediately to get this med. As much as I couldnt afford the vet bill as I am also on SS, I had to do it as you can not let the animal ride it out.That is too cruel because they are in excruciating pain and cant tell you.

    Some people have succeeded getting the excess poison off using Dawn dishwashing detergent as it breaks down grease and oils.

    Still that wont remove what was already absorbed through the cat’s skin! It enters the skin, travels through the sebaceous glands all over the cat’s body. It is a central nervous system poison and will cause pain, seizures, fur loss and in some cases skin erosions and ulcers as well as it leads to death of the animal without getting treatment.

    Maybe Dr.Bill [post above] can recommend something but you really need to bring the cat to an emergency vet right away.

    I am broke all summer because of my Vet bill and behind with my rent and my bank account was overdrawn all last month, but the cat needed the emergency treatment and deserved it as it wasnt her fault to react to those damn drops the way she did.

    Like I said, I thought that I used a tube from the dog flea drops, as there was an open tube in the drawer where we keep our pet products BUT I used a small white open tube and only used 2 drops of it as it was supposed to be a ‘single’ dose. I assumed it was the dogs drops when I wrote my intial posts, but later on my son was the one who pointed out to me that none of the puppy/dog drops had been used. Still only 2 drops and all that agony for a cat? The stuff needs to be banned~!!!

  28. I’m sorry your cats went through this terrible ordeal. That said, it seems like you have been more outraged by the fact that the vet bills cost you nearly $500 than anything. From reading your posts, it looks like you put the product on the cat shortly after or while it was wearing a flea collar. Common sense should have told you that you don’t mix pesticides. And why would you not think they were harmful? They are meant to kill fleas after all.
    If you are going to use a cheap product to treat your pets then you owe it to the pets to be as informed about that product as possible.

  29. Of course I was upset about the cost. I live on a disability pension of only $700 a month of which more than $650 is rent & utilities! I don’t fault the Vet, but was given an initial estimate of $120 and the cat was in his care for little less than 2 days [about 36 hours] so I was shocked when told it was going to cost $485~! I was unprepared for such a high bill but since it came at the beginning of the month, I paid it immediately.
    I never even considered that Hartz or Sargents were ‘cheap’ as I didnt use flea drops before this time. I had put flea collars on the cats but they weren’t working since the cat jumped up on my bed and since it had a light colored bedspread I saw the fleas coming off her and caught and killed them.
    The flea collar was only about 3 weeks old, but apparently a ‘dud’~
    I am no scientist or vet tech but when I saw the fleas and killed the 4 that came off her, I looked at her belly and saw she had a few more, so that was why I decided to try the flea drops that we had in our pet drawer. I had picked them up at a store a few weeks earlier but wasnt using them as I thought the collars would have sufficed. We have 7 dogs and 3 cats and usually August is worse here for fleas, which would have been when I would have used them, had the collars did their job.
    The tubes were out of their package cards as they had been placed in the drawer a few weeks earlier. The tube I took out was a skinny single dose white tube and I only used 2 drops per cat, assuming it would give them relief til the morning when I would have bought new flea collars for them again.
    The other 2 cats did not have the same reaction, although later in the week the larger cat did have some vomiting and a few weeks later had shed some fur on her lower back, even though she was washed off immediately after my little cat reacted.
    All I know about collars was that they lose potency over time and I was surprised that after only 3 weeks it wasnt working, which was why I opted to use what was on hand, which was the drops.
    My cat still is losing fur from this ordeal but she is better now. The vet said it takes about 6 weeks and the fur will grow back. I am thrilled she is getting better.
    As far as the Vet bill, what annoyed me was that from a quote of $120 estimate to the charge 36 hours later of $485 – that was a HUGE jump in prices.
    Then asking about the care, the cat had a bath, was given an IV bag [one] and was given some Robaxin and caged to let it run its course.She came home with a 1/2 of a Robaxin to break in half again [1/4’s] to be given the next day and then that was all there was too it.
    Since it was an emergency and they knew what needed to be done, I was at their mercy as well, since I wanted my cat saved.
    I asked if I could give them 1/2 [$240] cash at the time of service and IF I could pay them the balance the following month but they refused. I told them I live on $700 a month.They took the $240 but said the cat would not be released til I paid the balance~
    They also said that board would be $9 a day til the bill was paid but that after 30 days they could file a suit in the local court. [apparently others have cheated them!]
    Had I left the cat there 30 days til my next disability check came, the bill would have grown and additional $270 more for boarding! Had I given up on my cat, I could have been brought to court with even more expenses.
    I was left with no choice but to go back to the bank and pay the total immediately.
    As a result of paying that immediately, I am now behind on rent, utilities and insurance. I am facing possible eviction and my cable is about to be shut off.With the money I gave the vet, I had some EFTs for bills that came out and bounced incurring bank fees on my part that had a $6 a day penalty til my disability check came for August, starting me off more than $160 behind due to the bank fees alone~ Had that Vet allowed me to pay 1/2 and 1/2 I would have avoided being late on the other bills and having the one overdraft that kept charging til the 1st.
    This was not my regular vet, but I had used them once before where paying the last bill was not problem and they should have trusted me since the whole thing was not elective but an emergency.The bill shows overages too such as the 1/2 pill they gave me to take home and use for the cat, they said to break it in 1/2 but charged me $6 each dose- so $12 for a 1/2 pill. I happen to have the very same Robaxin as it is my prescription & they could have just told me to use 1/4 chips of that – but overall that was only $12 on the bill. They just were expensive for the service that they actually rendered since they gave the cat a bath & IV for padded their bill. That didnt even include a follow up visit!
    Our regular vet was on vacation, but he would have taken payments instead of holding my cat hostage.
    So now that you brought up your observations, I can only say I hope you never have to be in the same situation~ It has ruined my entire summer~!

  30. My poor cat is full of fleas right now and his hair is falling from him scratching. I have better common sense to not put a product that is clearly labeled FOR DOGS regardless of the fine print… but this is america… blame someone else for our own actions when they go wrong.

  31. Alex, you would be wise not to use ANY over-the-counter topical spot-on pesticide product on your cat if you care for his health.

  32. The stuff used for dogs and cats is poison, regardless to which one you use. I thought I used the dog one from the draw, thus my first post to which for a word many make me out to be an offender for. It turned out the tube, since it was already out of its carton and in the drawer where we keep animal stuff, was actually the Sargeants cat flea drops. It was a single dose tube and only 2 drops were used on the cat.
    Even with only 2 drops, she went into convulsions like I have never seen in an animal before and had to be rushed to the vet and the bill was staggering and ruined my summer, but my cat needed to be saved there and then.
    She has since lost weight, alot of fur, but now the drops that the vet put on afterwards has worn off and her fur is coming back but she is now scrawny looking so even 2 months later she is still recovering~
    I gave the tube to the vet when I brought her in for the emergency treatment, so I have no recourse with Sargeants as they will pay the vet bills only if the tube accompanies the already paid bill.
    As much as it broke, me it isnt about the money~!
    Its about corporate greed in that they rather continue selling their cheaper to make poison and pay off those who lose a pet than to make a safer product.

    I sympathize that your cat has all the fleas right now but that is exactly where I was at 2 months ago when I decided to put just 2 of the dang drops on my cat..

    Some animals dont show signs of the poisoning right away, but you wont know til you actually poison your cat and then IF it survives you will be faced with $450-700 in vet fee which would make you want to turn back time and go by the Vet safer one which is Frontline, although that too has some poison but is manufactured safer so it is supposed to not be potentially lethal..

    I blame myself for using the drops on my cat. I never used drops before. But I also blame Sargents for selling an unsafe product. I trusted them~

  33. I care for my cat’s health so much…I love my him like if he was my kid. My cat is already five years old and before that I had a cat who was 8 years old before she died. I’ve always used over the counter produtcs for them and I’ve never had a problem. I’ve used hartz before but I stopped using it because it just doesn’t work on my cat. I try to keep him as clean and flea-free throughout the summer and fall until they go dormant in the winter but this summer has been horrible. It’s hard to not have fleas in the house when we also have 3 huge great danes. I use Hartz on them and it works like a charm…the older great dane is almost 7 years. I hope your cat gets better and a full recovery AveHurley.

  34. Another problem with the current manufacture of flea products is that they are outsource produced oover seas]and there was one case I read about through related links, that the vet who examined the dog and its blood after death found that it had 30x the lethal dose in it, [not from the owner overdosing ] but from the ‘vat’ it was made from.
    Government regulations are not stringent enough on flea products. The corporations have changed ingredients several times over the years, so even though your other animals may have been lucky each time you used them in the past, that is no guarantee that the next vial you use wont be the one that makes them sick or kills them!

    Manufacturers are businessmen and while they may stay within the current parameters of the curren law regulations, they have found a way to use the cheapest method of neutralizing fleas so that they will have maximum profit. On a business level that might seem okay, but the actual testing done was not sufficent to demonstrate the overall safety of the product.

    There are literally thousands of animals dying annually from the base ingredients used in these products, but they compare that to the millions they sell and profit from.It is cheaper for them to pay off grieving pet owners than to rectify the problem by using safer ingredients .

    I had used the same single dose tube sharing it on 3 cats that day. If anything it should have been ‘weak’. After the violent reaction my cat had, I assumed I must have used the dog’s tube by mistake and brought the tube to the Vet in case it had to use it to look up antedotes. I was unfamiliar with flea drops as this was the first year we ever bought them. They had been removed from the card when purchased and placed in a drawer that we keep pet stuff in.We have 7 dogs and 3 cats. We live on a farm. There was another package of tubes of flea drops in the drawer that contained 3 of Hartz and the single dose tube which was for cats was from Sargent.
    When I saw that fleas were on my cat despite her having a relatively new flea collar [ I only used flea collars in the past and my son occasionally used Sargents flea baths for his cats a few years ago, which by the way has those pyrethins ingredients too!]
    It was the day before my pension check came and I thought that since the flea collar wasnt working, that I would try the one tube of drops on my cat and the other 2 cats. The point is even with only 1/3 the dose, she had that violent reaction necessitating the emergency vet treatment and almost died from it!
    The larger cat did lose a little fur near her tail and also vomited intermittently over the course of the next few week. The white cat we have didnt lose any fur noticeably as she is angora and has alot of fur ~ she seemed least affected.

    You should read up more on these products before assuming they are safe~ Some cats and dogs have reactions that are not noticeable to owners. The stuff is a neurotoxin to the fleas and definitely has some affect on the animal and many animals especially cats dont show when they are in pain but will lay around and sleep it off. So you may have an animal that is sleeping act otherwise acting normal by your observations, but may in fact be in pain because you are using those drops!! All you will see is that the fleas are gone, but at what cost to your pets overall health?????

    These products need to be investigated, regulated better and the ingredients that can cause pain and fatalities should be banned! There are safer ingredients used and better buffering agents that other flea products contain that are safer for the animals and Hartz and Sargents, while perhaps the best known retailers do not use the safer ingredients. They use the cheaper more lethal one.

    They already know this and currently pay off pet owners vet bills who send in the vet bill along with the vat numbers, tubes and cartons.They already know they are wrong. They look at it statistically though and claim only 1 in a 1000 react, so it is cost effective for them to continue in the way they are going , unless government regulations are improved which would force them to use safer ingredients.

    So maybe you pets arent the 1:1000 sufferers but there is no guarantee that the next time you use their products that your pets wont have the same violent reactions. It is gambling with their lives over the convenience of ridding them of fleas.

  35. we always use advantage on our yorkie. i heard they were all trhe same so we tried this seargants. ive done everything right for 9 years. every vet, groomer etc.my dog is very sick andmy sons new kitten(about 3 months old) lays with our yorkie. well she must have licked him and i think shes dying. its just disgusting….im sick to death over this….

  36. I am so sorry to everyone and their precious pets who have suffered through this,I too have now learned a very hard lesson,my cat died from permithrin toxicity.There must be a way to get this crap off of the shelves.The internet is full of stories like these,but it is ALWAYS AFTER the damage has been done.The suffering MUST stop,but how can we make a difference? Anyone have any ideas on what we could do?

  37. Dear Shannon, I am so sorry that your cat didnt survive this horrible currently legal poison.If you have vet bill along with proof of purchase of the poison that killed your cat, you can contact the manufacturer’s customer service department and possibly get a refund of your vet bills involved. Definitely register a complaint.
    Also make up a letter documenting the course of actions leading to your pet’s death and send it to your Congressman. I was told when I spoke with my State Representative, that IF enough victims contact their Congressmen, that it may be possible to get legislation introduced to ban this poison and others like them that are lethal, so that the government regulations are changed to protect other pets in the future from this poison. More than 1000 pets die agonizing deaths from these pet related products, bought and used unwittingly as most of us never considered how dangerous they really are since they are sold in Walmart and many other places . Even with the tiny printed warninga we tend to trust that if they are being sold that they must be safe when they are not safe at all.

    I wish you the best, keep in touch with this site as more people come forward maybe we can start something as a group, against the pet flea control manufacturers and distributors~
    🙂 Ave

  38. Dear Sarah~ I am so sorry this is happening to your pets too~
    If it isnt too late, repeat the Dawn Dish Detergent baths as they draw out oily toxins as these poisons are in the pets sebaceous glands and lasts for several weeks as the pet may die anywhere from now to then. Methocarbamol is what my vet gave to relieve the muscle spasms my cat had from it and you might be able to get some from your vet, to help ease the cat’s discomfort.
    Write down what happened to your pets along with tbe name of the product used and manufacturer’s name and send a copy with any vet bill to the manufacturer, but also send a copy to your Congressman, as more people need to lean them to help bring about legislation to ban the toxic ingredients.
    I hope your pets survive this

  39. First of all, AveHurley…never, EVER assume anything about ANY product, especially a medication. I’m an emergency veterinary nurse and I see this sort of thing happen constantly…owners giving medications not meant for their pets, etc…and I have seen more than my fair share of flea medication toxicities. I see it most commonly with off-name brands sold in groceries and marts…Sergeant’s Gold, Hartz, etc. In this case, you used the dog kind, but I’ve seen cats get the cat kind and still get poisoned so I’ll give you that much.

    However in this particular case, whereas it’s very unfortunate that this happened to your cat, it’s basically your fault. It clearly said, “do not use on cats”. It wasn’t a ploy. It was a warning. Your complaint is that it didn’t mention that it was deadly. Why should it? Clearly, if it’s specifically stating not to use it on cats, it obviously would have some sort of hazardous effects on your cat’s health, right? Death or not, it said cats can’t have it, and you gave it anyway.

    Yes…dogs and cats are both common household pets, but they are NOT the same animal. Their genetics are completely different, as are their tolerances for certain medications. You cannot always give the same thing to a dog that you would give to a cat, and vice versa. You can’t count on their weight being the only obstacle to overcome in the decision to give a medication, either. What you would give a tiny puppy could STILL kill a cat, if it wasn’t formulated specifically FOR cats.

    About half of the toxicity cases I see are because the owner did what you did…gave a dog-dose to a cat. It’s entirely preventable in that respect, and is the second-best thing you can do for your pet…the best thing being not giving them that cruddy off-brand flea medication in the first place.

    I may sound like I’m being tough, but I’m just being honest. When I’m at work, I’m forced to coddle owners who make these mistakes and I don’t think they ever truly get it into their heads. So here, I can show a little tough love. This situation happens too often and it causes pet owners a lot of heartache and money…not to mention, think of the poor pets! My first and foremost concern is those animals, and they suffer when their humans “assume” things. They can’t tell you not to give them bad things! They rely on you to take care of them…so educate yourselves, each one of you that reads this, before giving ANYTHING you’re not 100% sure about. If you have questions, you can ALWAYS call your regular veterinarian OR an after-hours emergency hospital.

    Better safe than sorry.

  40. I’m sorry for what happened to your cat but I must say your story does not at all add up. First it’s you used this then you used that but either way you put the product on the wrong animal. In my opinion you should not even be allowed to have a furry companion, you obviously don’t pay attention to what you’re doing. Why would you throw the boxes away and leave just tubes to play a guessing game with.!? Also, you do know that everytime you post you don’t have to write a novel; you just ramble and repeat and get upset when others say it’s your own fault this happened, you’re making yourself seem more unstable as a pet owner. Because in reality it is your fault take responsibilty for your actions!

  41. So Gooomba – what is your point? What is your purpose? You say I am responsible. I have taken my responsibility by taking care of my cat, trying to relieve her of her fleas with a product I thought was safe since it was publicly sold and her flea collar was not working as it should have been. I immediately sought out Vet help and had her treated, saved and she is recovering. I suffered watching her suffer and did all I could to save her and not let her die from that crap!

    You fail to realize that I am writing to warn other pet owners who face similar situations so it will HELP them to save their pets from what mine has gone through. There are many pet owners who dont even know that its the drops they may be using that may be the cause of sudden deaths their pets go through because many simply do not know or associate the onset of symptons with the dang poison the manufacturers use in these products. It isnt just the drops but all their products that have this poison.

    A man place a video up here a couple of months ago, having normally bathed his large dog with flea shampoo. A normal thing a caring pet owner does, not to harm their pet, but to help rid the pet of fleas. Then his dog gets ill the next day and degenerates rapidly , not knowing the cause- Goes to the vet but treatment was too late and a few days later his dog died!!!

    Its not the wrapper but what is written on it that is one problem, so whether I used it fresh from the wrapper or not didnt change the reaction it gave my cat!

    Sorry to say your comments are idiotic, superficially judgemental, not helpfulto anyone and perhaps you are the one who shouldnt own an animal since you apparently lack empathy in your narcissistic approach to this subject.

    I will continue to write warning pet owners and have already received word on several occasions that my writings have helped other pet owners to find the symptoms on line fast enough to be able to save their own pets, so people like you with your opinions, simply dont matter~! You make me wonder if you could even work for the manufacturers of those poisons~ since you miss the point of why we are here complaining about what happened to our pets and what had to be done to save the ones that survived. My cat was lucky, but many victims here have lost their pets and they too speak up now as this has to get known to the general population and Congress who regulates those who approve the usage of these ingredients in pet care products 🙂

  42. K.G.~ Of course basically it is my fault to have ever assumed in the first place that buying over the counter pet products were safe! What was I thinking??? Just because they sell them I would assume at most they would be weaker and less effective, perhaps, but I never dreamed they were lethal!

    I mean my cat got fleas. I bought her a flea collar. Then she still gets more fleas while wearing the flea collar. It isnt like my world revolves around my cat 100% of my time.

    I have other concerns in life and other responsibilities and things to do. BUT then I see her scratching, all bothered and looking to me for help.

    I wanted to help her. Yes, forgive me for being so ignorant concerning flea infestations!! I never took a course in flea control, nor went to school for it.

    I never used flea drops before either, but since the collar wasnt doing the trick 3 weeks after it was applied, I assumed it may have been a ‘dud’ as it obviously didnt have what was needed to keep my cat free of the fleas that were driving her crazy with scratching~ That caught my attention and so I went into the drawer in the kitchen were we keep our pet products.We buy them when they are on sale and save them in a drawer. The one with the wrapper was written either in french or spanish, but not english. It was in the Dollar Tree store.it still looked simple enough having had a picture of a cat on it, but since I bought flea collars decided to try the drops at a later date. Now my cat needed another collar since hers wasnt working and I wasnt going to the store til the next day, so I decided to try the drops and took the one that was already opened & removed from its carton and used it. I thought they were all basically the same since it is the same fleas that infest both dogs and cats and we have both. It wasnt til she had the reaction that I thought I must have used the puppy drops.I wrote my first post while my cat was still in the hospital. It was later my son corrected me that I hadnt used the dog drops as they were all in their cartons still.

    It was a single use tube, but I didnt want to put the whole amount on her as I thought I only needed to get a new flea collar in the morning, when I was going to go out the next day.

    Since she is an inside cat and my sons 2 cats go outside, it was obvious to my ignorant mind that the other cats brought the fleas into my house infesting my cat who played with the the other 2 all the time.

    So in my stupidity on the matter, I assumed that to place just a little of this single dose tube might give them each relief overnite, but thought that it just wouldnt have lasted as long as if I put the whole dose on my one cat.

    Thank God I only put 2 drops on each one.. The white one ended up losing little fur and had no ill effects.The larger grey did have spouts of vomiting for about a week afterwards. Had I put the whole tube on my cat, she would have died before the Vet could see her that night.

    Yes, I was so stupid in this matter, so uninformed as to its dangers since I never heard of any problems with these products before and wasnt even sure that was the cause when I sought out veterinary help.

    Maybe I over reacted in not waiting til morning and getting a vet that same night, after hours, that I was willing to pay an additional $120 over the bill, to get help for my car as soon as he first symptoms appeared.. I am so dumb, I rushed her to get help and all because I put the drops on her as I assumed this product to be safe!

    I assumed since it was sold over the counter that it was safe. I never heard of all the reactions other pet owners have already gone through, assuming the same way I did that to put it on my pets that my only initial concern was “HOW LONG WILL IT LAST IN KEEPING THE FLEAS OFF MY CAT?” That was my only concern at the moment, til the cat later went into convulsions..

    Had I not been so dumb IN THE FIRST PLACE TO EVER BUY THOSE PRODUCTS, I never would have PUT the dang drops on my cat AND afterwards reading all the horror stories of what has been happening to other pet owners cats and dogs, I see I am not the only dumb one~

    Many people make the same mistake, not of just not reading or comprehending the labelling or directions, but in simply applying this crap on their pets in the first place~!

    Flea drops kill pets and accumulatively poison pets who seem to tolerate them, but still makes them sick.Cats sleep more when they are sick and so some go through mild reactions without the pet owners even being aware of it.

    Flea Drop Manufacturers do know that their ingredients are dangerous however, but they sell them anyway ~like Hartz, Bansect, Sargents and others can use safer ingredients but since Congress also is stupid in believing the Manufacturers biased testing results have placed all pets in jeopardy since people buy alot of these produts , not aware of how dangerous the stuff actually is…

    I kick myself for ever buying the stuff and assuming it was safe when in fact it isnt safe at all. I am lucky my cat has recovered now and that the other 2 cats had milder reactions than she did.
    Thankyou for remarks. I can understand your frustration at pet owners but wouldnt it be more productive to place your frustration against the manufacturers? Obviously professionals such as your self and the doctor you work for, could join together with other vets and be heard more readily by Congress by giving professional and experiential reports on how many people you have to help save their pets each year.

    If all you vet techs and doctors know people like me use these products maybe once and our pets go through this, that the American Vet associations should lobby to ban these products from public sales.. but then again you would have less business too…

    My fault was my own ignorance with these products. What is the Manufacturer’s fault or professional Vet Techs & Vets responsibility? As a consumer and pet owner, it isnt enough to be scolded after the fact!Everyone knows hindsite is 20/20~

  43. first to all who have lost their pet my deepest sorrow
    I am out of work, living only on my SS benifit, when I was working I was able to afford ADVANTAGE, FRONTLINE, for my 2 cats
    it had worked very good for my two keeping them free of fleas, well because money is so tight for everyone I have not been able to get them the for mentioned, believe me when I say, I have been closely watching them since last time I was able to get it, but this past month has been a very hard month financially, and I guess it was the month also for the fleas to inhabit Louie and midnight, I knew I was not going to be able to get Advantage this time, so I picked up HARTS ULTRA GUARD powder, now mind you like everyone else, your suppose to trust this company, so as soon as I got home, without reading the label, I sprinkled some of it over there beds they lay in, when I finally got to reading the label, the instructions said to put it all over the body, and to rub in really good closer to the skin and paws. Now this was two days earlier that I put it on there beds cause I wanted to see if that helped, but after the two days, I could see they are getting worse, so then I tried calling HARTZ, to ask them why there telling us to rub all over our cats, but then almost in same sentence says harmful if swallowed and if aborbed through the skin..
    I have had no luck getting through to the company, so that that should say to all of us beware.. When I could not reach them in person, I got on the internet and found this site which I am really grateful for, as it stands right now there losing some of there hair, and have probably ingested what little from there beds and I am worried.. I will not be able to get Advantage until next week, so I have been bathing them and brushing them as often as I can.. This really should make all of us sick, to think that a company like this would sell these harmful products, I have been watching, they are still eating and are not sick thank goodness, but there scratching is driving them crazy.. I am really so grateful that the day I put it on there beds, that I did not douse them with this stuff.. Thanks for reading this. I still am in shock over the comments here..

  44. I am truly sorry this has happened to you and your kittens. It’s another tragic story in a long line of pet injuries and deaths that bring deep loss and devastation to animals and pet owners. I’m very sorry.

    Thank you for bringing this forward–as painful as it must be. Hartz has one of the worst safety records in the industry. Their products containing the pesticide neurotoxin phenothrin have accounted for a significant number of the adverse incidents reported to the EPA over the years. Their appalling safety record goes back to the ’80’s and ’90’s with their product, Blockade, which was pulled from the market because of an unacceptable number of animal injuries and deaths. Hartz later attempted to re-introduce Blockade and once again they were forced to withdraw it because of a terribly high number of adverse incidents. They have been forced by the EPA to make numerous labeling revisions and they have been cited and fined for not promptly and accurately reporting adverse incidents to the EPA. Their cat and kitten products were terminated in 2006 when the EPA issued a Cancellation Order (2005) against Hartz because of their deplorable safety record. Please, take one important step to help yourself and other pets and pet owners. Please take the time to report your incident to the National Pesticide Information Center (NPIC). This organization works with the EPA to compile the database of incidents and statistics that will be analyzed and used as a basis for corrective action. The NPIC can be reached at 1-800-858-7378. They are very professional, courteous and efficient. This is a critical step in the public forcing the EPA–one of the most lax oversight agencies in the federal government–to do the right thing and get these neuro-toxin pesticide ingredients out of the marketplace. Also, please call Hartz Mountain once again and report this incident to them. They WILL NOT be happy to hear from you, but they–-like all the manufacturers–-have an obligation under federal law to forward your report to the EPA. As I mentioned, Hartz Mountain has been cited and fined for not properly and promptly reporting these incidents in the past. Their telephone number is 1-800-275-1414. Put the pressure on Hartz by giving them the details and forcing them to report to the EPA. Also, they should be asked to reimburse your medical expenses…don’t hesitate to ask for this. Also, most veterinarians are willing to work with you regarding your financial situation. They have seen first hand the devastation that these products are causing–-they understand the pain and suffering. If you need financial assistance to treat or euthanize an animal most veterinarians will attempt to work with you–-don’t hesitate to ask. Thank you again; so very sorry for what has happened. It’s reprehensible that Hartz, BioSpot, Sergeant’s and others continue to injure and kill thousands of pets–-it’s absolutely unacceptable. We should all do whatever we can to prevent this from happening to others. Communications to the proper regulatory agencies, manufacturers, NPIC, the media and politicians are critical steps. All the best.

  45. Thankyou for this information. I am going to report it on Monday and call those numbers you provided. I am also looking into a ways to promote this site so more people will become aware. Its almost inconceivable that even with being such big corporations that they still are getting away with it and animals are needlessly suffering and dying and we the animal owners find little recourse.People as well as animals are suffering by the heartache of losing our pets or the high vet bills incurred while trying to save our pets. It isnt the vet’s fault that the costs are so high, its because of the physical devastion to the pet requiring the medical aid as a direct result of the toxins these manufacturers choose to use in the name of corporate greed!!
    I dont care who they pay off or have as lobbies in Washington, these manufacturers have to be stopped from using these abominable poisons in their over the counter pet care products. They actually deserve to be bankrupted for their reckless use of toxins and their insensitivity to all the victims they have caused harmed to or killed with their products. Its like giving pet owners loaded guns to rid their pets of fleas, but far more devilish, as the pets suffer and die such agonizing deaths from these flea products! Hartz, Sargeants and the others are causing the injuries and deaths and should be held accountable.
    My cat survived this ordeal but it cost me my summer because of the medical care she needed as a result, which I didnt hesitate to seek veterinary care as soon as she began to react so violently to the Sargents cat flea drops used. I thought I had mistakenly used the dog flea drops, but later my son showed me that the tube I used was the one for cats, but it was only a single dose and I divided it on 3 cats to try and give them a little relief from their fleas. One cat showed little signs with fur falling out and the second cat lost fur and vomited for over a week, the third cat,mine, went into convulsions and seizures and ran about crashing into walls, screaming, til we caught her and caged her then brought her to the animal hospital where they saved her.It has taken her 2 months to grow back the fur that fell out and to become active again!She lost weight and even with added supplemental feedings, remains underweight and sickly looking.This stuff damages their livers big time, so I am sorry to realize that her life expectancy is more than likely shortened considerably.
    The numbers you provided are a good start for all of us.
    Thankyou:) Ave

  46. I am with Alex. It is high time folks started taking responsibilty for thier own actions. Ave, if you cannot read the fine print buy a set of reading glasses which are probably cheaper than the flea drops, and READ that label. When it doubt DON’T use the product. Also assume means *ass u and me*, remeber that in the future. If you love your pets spend the extra money and go to the vet for thier medications. If you cannot afford this, maybe you may have to give up a few of them to folks who can afford to treat them properly and give them a good home so you can give your remaining pets they care the deserve. I love all animals and foster many cats and dogs waiting for adoption. My rule of thumb is treat them as you would your children and don’t skimp, as they are God’s gift to us and very very precious. Seeking rewards for your cheapness and stupidity is the MAIN reason our Health Care is such a mess. As I said in the begining, take responsibilty for your own actions good or bad. By the way I am happy that your kitty surived. God Bless. Snowcat60

  47. First off, let me say that I am so thankful that your kitty has recovered from this horrific occurrence. You obviously love your pets very much and I know how terrifying the entire experience must I have been. I am an Er vet. I see dozens of cases like this every year. Not only cases of cats getting the dog medication, but cats being exposed to the dog medication (from laying on shared beds or grooming their best doggy buddy), and even cats reacting to CAT labeled products and dogs reacting to DOG labeled products. I HATE OTC flea and tick products! Not only do I think they fail to work 99% of the time, I think they are ticking time bombs of toxicity. AveHarley, you had my complete sympathy and support….until you started attacking the veterinary community.

    I actually think that for a 36 hour visit, the bill presented to you was quite reasonable if your kitty had IVF and multiple injections of robaxin (it is a very expensive injectable drug!). Please remember that you are paying for repeated exams, cage space, supplies, doctor and licensed technician time, medications, and equipment. I don’t see anywhere where something could have been ‘padded’ in that total! If YOU had been in the hospital for 36 hours and received these same treatments, I can promise you this bill would be in the thousands. We use the same equipment and medications and go to a 4 year medical school just like human doctors. Why should they trust you to come back and pay your bill just because they’ve seen you one other time? This past spring I treated the dog of a friend of my husband. Someone my husband had known for FIFTEEN YEARS. You would think this would be someone I could trust right? Wrong. He paid by credit card and then reversed the charges and disappeared. As a result, guess who’s pay check it came out of? Traditionally people don’t screw over their regular vet because they do have a relationship, E-clinics get ripped off much more frequently and as a result we NEVER bill. If we don’t get payment we can’t pay OUR bills, can’t buy the supplies we need to stay open, and can’t pay our staff, and can’t be there to help other patients in the future. And if you think we’re all rich from ‘padding our bills’, think again. I drive a 10 year old truck with 150,000 miles that needs a break job that I can’t afford, am 34 years old and live in a house I rent from my parents. And the comment “that the American Vet associations should lobby to ban these products from public sales.. but then again you would have less business too…” from your response to K.G. HOW DARE YOU imply that we would want animals to suffer so that we could profit!!! What kind of person are you?! For your information EVERY SINGLE CASE of flea product toxicity I see I report to OSU and the EPA!! The goal being to shut Hartz/sargeants,etc down! Before you start throwing stones try taking care of the pets you have first. You’ve already stated on this board that at least one of your cats is not spayed. Before adding to your huge pet family, I suggest that you find a way to properly care (spay/neuter, vaccinate and start a fund for future medical emergencies) for those that you already have. Pets are not a right, they are a responsibility.

  48. I am sorry you misunderstood the thread and what I was trying to explain at the time in the the subsequent emails. My regular vet is terrific and I know these meds are expensive and that under normal circumstances there can be alot more involved behind the scenes and all.
    What my complaint initially was that they told me it was going to cost $120 and my cat had to stay overnight. That wasnt a problem, although for me that itself was expensive since I live on $700 per month & my rent is $500 of that.
    In my cat’s case, I was also wrong in assuming initially it was the puppy drops as it actually was the cat drops. We checked the drawer they were all kept in and counted the tubes and my son showed me that the puppy drops were in brown tubes from Hartz and the Cat drops were white tubes from Sargent.I mentioned that in later posts.
    Also according to what the Vet office told me, the Vet never saw my cat as he was away those days. The Vet tech washed my cat, gave her 1 IVF and 1/2 robaxin tablet while in there and the next morning anotehr 1/2 tablet. They told me at 4:00 pm to come pick up the cat.

    Since I am disabled my son went down for me, with $220 on him as he was going to the store for me after the Vets, but when he went to pay the quoted $120 was told it was instead $485~

    He called me on his cell and I told him to give them the $220 and that I would get the rest within a month to them.
    They took the $220 and said that they would not release the car until I paid in full. This wasn’t my current Vet but one I used a few years ago 2x and paid in full both times, but since I moved I used a new Vet in town, but who was on vacation, so we had to go to the old vet.

    Anyway, this vet’s office, would not release my cat and said they would charge $9 a day more each day for board until I paid so my son came home without the cat. We then went to the bank to take out the rest of my money [which was supposed to pay my rent] and went back to the Vets, after calling them and saying we were on our way. They said someone should be there til 6pm but to ring the bell.

    We got back there at 5:10 and had the cash to give them to get the cat back, as I only get 1 check a month, but have occasional art card sales online that might help pay earlier, but IF I had to leave the cat til my next check that would have cost me an additional $270 + the balance of the emergency care. I felt I was being strong armed at the moment but knew I would be in the same position the following month, so I used my rent money to pay the Vet bill.

    No one answered the bell. We rang and stayed there til 5:30 hoping someone would answer the door so we could pay and bring the cat home. We had to leave and return in the morning, paying the balance + the $9 overnite board~She was discharged with 1/2 pill of Robaxin ~ [human pill cut in half~ as I could recognize it since I take Robaxin too~!]

    Now this is a country doctor’s office, so perhaps they do things differently than where you are from~

    Also I know when it is complicated, that Vet intervention and additional meds can be expensive but usually after a hospitalization there is a followup visit.

    They didnt even give my cat a followup visit. Also when they put the Frontline on my cat, they said I was going to get the tube, however they instead put it on my cat before she came home.Although I had inquired over the phone about a safer flea drop solution, I didnt actually ask them to put it on her and didnt think putting any on while she was that weak after such a horrible reaction, that they shouldnt have put it on her~ Also it was more expense added to the bill.

    So my cat while she did get the bath and the one bag of fluid and a couple of pills, didnt get the kind of care you talk about. Had she received actual doctor care and shots etc., I could better understand a higher bill.

    She was also allergic to the Frontline that the tech put on her. When I called them earlier about it I was only asking questions, not asking them to put that on her, but of course it was added to the bill, thus my perception of something that shouldnt have been done and the idea of holding my cat hostage after she was ready to go home and I had already paid nearly 1/2 the bill and had previous history with them as always paying my bills on time, that they could have let her come home with me the first day, which was at the 19 hr mark when they said she could come home.Maybe you do things differently….

    It was insult to injury but I do understand that Vets might get ripped off by people but I never ripped off any vet~Still the problem wasnt the vets- as my later threads mentioned. I have no problem with the vet as they did save my cat’s life.

    Honestly, if they told me ahead of time that it could get significantly higher than the $120- such as the $485 that they charged me~ I probably would have had to have had my cat euthanized~ which would have been a shame, but I simply could not afford that amount. My landlord was furious with having to wait a month for me to totally catch up as I gave him what I had left after paying the Vet & the rest with the next month’s rent, making my landlord wait instead.I could have been evicted for not paying my full rent on time.

    I was broke and grounded all summer as I couldnt re-register my car either til August because of the high vet bill. Now even so~ I brought the flea drops tube to the Vet when my cat first convulsed.

    I didnt know that Sargents would actually be responsible for the bill. I only found out a couple of days later when I got online about this.

    I never used flea drops before this time.I assumed they were safe.

    I usually relied on flea collars but this time even with new flea collars they still got fleas.

    We got the drops on sale and were saving them for August when the collars were supposed to expire, but didnt. I was going to get new collars in the morning but to give relief to the cats, I divided one tube among 3 cats~ only 2 drops each.

    I did do them right on the backs of their necks, but I only used 2 drops instead of the whole tube, so I cant begin to imagine what a whole tube would have done to her~

    My son found out that Sargents would reimburse vet bills relating to their product but I had already discarded the package and didnt know where the receipt was. Sargents told him that all we needed was the empty tube so they can check the vat# to see which source produced it for them and told him that they outsource it and perhaps dilution was wrong and it was more potent than it should have been so they needed the tube for testing. Unfortunately, the Vet tech discarded the tube. Sargents called us back and said to submit the Vet bill anyway, acting like they were going to help anyway since I was able to provide them with the name of the store I purchased them at but later Sargents turned down my claim.

    Back to the Frontline that the Vet tech put on my cat before her discharge from their office, her hair began falling out~ She was still losing weight.

    I called and told them about it but they said it would take 6 weeks to wear off. They said it was only a side effect and not dangerous, that no followup was needed according to them.

    I was worried about my cat all summer as she lost more fur, laid about sleepy all the time and was so skinny. After about 8 wks she did start growing her fur back and has now regained her weight.

    You sound like a decent vet~ but if you read the entire thread you would have seen that I wasnt blaming the vet, so when you say “how dare I” and take offense on the behalf of a vet you do not know as though I were accusing you of ripping me off~ I say that when you answer a matter without knowing the entire story, that you have assumed wrong.

    I understand being ripped off, my car has over 200,000 miles and needs alot of repairs that I can not afford. I do alot of volunteer work and while I try to sell some art online to offset my bills and I work to help other artists to show and sell their art, I dont get paid for 99% of what I do! It doesnt stop me from helping people. I certainly dont force people to pay me up front just because others stiffed me on a bill.

    It is not my fault that other people rip off Vets~
    I never have~ I always pay my bills, despite being broke in between or as a result.

    While that $265 difference that I had to pay immediately to get my cat released, may not be alot to most people, it was enough to force me to stay indoors home all summer, because I had to then wait to re-register & inspect my car & buy used brakes for it~

    I strongly doubt waiting 30 days to receive that $265 would have crippled that vet~ especially since I had been to him a few times in the past and always paid immediately on previous visits.

    I paid my Landlord the balance of what I owed him the following month and then got my car legal again the next month.

    I had to do without alot over the summer because of the way the Vet’s office handled it and perhaps had I the opportunity to talk to the Vet directly, he may have let me pay the following month. I dont know, but realize his techs act on his behalf. You cant lump all people together as potential nonpayers!

    My landlord said he would have let me select one of the 30+ cats up in his barn! He thought it ludicrous to pay so much for a ferrel cat~ [ My cat was a kitten found wandering outside the barn at 3wks old when I took her in, bottle fed her and raised her tame. I am glad she is alive, but, when I was given an estimate of $120- I expected it to costs that and after 19 hours of ‘treatment’ which was written out on the bill as a bath , an IV bag and some pills~ [which I know the price of Robaxin as I also take it & it isnt that much money for a couple of human split pills~] The cat had 1 shot of Valium too~ but they said she responded well after the bath. Had I found instructions, I could have done the same and am prepared to do so if anything like this were to hypothetically happen again.

    That Vets office also didnt report the poisoning and told me it was up to me to do so~

    So perhaps you do the right thing, but dont go assuming everyone is like you. I dont.

  49. Its about a year since I tried a new product on my cat to rid of of fleas that our other pets brought into the house.
    I had picked up some tubes of Flea Drops on sale at the Dollar Tree. They were in Spanish but showed by picture to put the drops on the back of the cat’s neck.

    Since she has a relatively new flea collar it surprised me that she had any fleas so I checked my son’s cats and saw they had fleas too, even though each wore a flea oollar.

    About 2 hours after applying the drops, my cat was in convulsions running into walls, foaming at the mouth ad screaming. My son caught her and put her into a travel cage. Her eyes were bugged out and she screamed in pain. My son thought she had somehow contracted rabies, although she had never been outside before.

    While my son called around different Vet offices to see if one was open anywhere [ our Vet was out of town at the time] I began to look up the symptoms to see if it could be rabies but then remembered the drops so I began searching for any pet flea toxicities and remedies.That is when I saw it happens to cats if they have dog drops put on them.

    I assumed I must have used the wrong drops so as soon as my son reached a vet’s office that was going to have a tech in at 10pm~ we rushed the cat to their office and waited for the tech to come so we could admit my cat for Emergency Treatment.I brought the tube to the vet, in case they could tell something from the codes or lot numbers and make some sort of antidote~The Tech took the tube but it was later discarded.The treatment included a Dawn Dishwashing Liquid, bathing her to get residue of the drops off her.

    When my son checked the other tubes in the drawer, he infomed me that all of the Hearts tubes were for the dogs and that they were all still full, but the white tube for the cat was missing [ because it was the only other tube in the drawer and I opened it and had squeezed 2 drops on each of our 3 cats.

    Alot of controversy masked much of this thread, first with the error I made saying I had used puppy drops on the cats. They were cat drops. My son’s 2 cats go outdoors and were stronger and bigger than my cat, who was only 6 lbs.

    As soom as I read to use Dawn I did use a dishrag with it to scrubb off the other 2 cats but we left for the vet office. The vet tech saved my cat’s life~!!

    I then wrote regarding the Vet costs, to show other owners how these products are lethal and expensive to treat animals who have them applied. Since the price quoted to me was about 1/4th of what I was actually charged, I addressed that here as well, only to have some vet techs get offended for which I apologized as I never meant to offend them as they do an awesome job when working with our pets.

    The point of my continuing thread was to serve as a warning for other pet owners who would make the same mistakes I did and go by the same assumptions I did concerning the products, thinking they were safe but perhaps not effective rather than knowing how lethal they are and that they should be banned from stores since Hartz , Sargents & others outsource the manufacture of these products and sometimes the concentration is off making these products even more deadly.

    Learning the first aid for flea drop poisoning, I also shared that with some readers who were in the critical time of discovering their pets having similar reactions to mine, so the information on immediately bathing with Dawn detergent actually helped save more pets as owners found this site and learned what they needed to do to save their pets. Other pet owners were too late and their pets died and they also shared on this thread.

    Still there are those who enjoy pointing fingers and blame back onto pet owners, so we heard from them as well. Why not? We as pet owners whose pets were injured of killed by the drops we bought, assuming to be safe, did put these products on our pets. And yes, some if not many do not read the microscopic fine prints found on the cartons these products are sold on and in my case since the carton was in Spanish or French, I had discarded the carton, keeping and using the drops on my cat & my son’s 2 cats.

    Finding symptoms on the internet and getting immediate Veterinary care saved my cat’s life.

    Contacting Sargents but not having the carton or tube met with their sincere apologies but they would not refund the vet bills since I didnt have the cartons, so IF you do use these products be sure to save the cartons in case your pet has a bad reaction and or dies.You can then with the receipts, carton & empty tube, possibly get your Vet bills refunded.

    I contacted my Congressman & State Representative’s offices but nothing was done, although the complaint was filed. If every pet owner who goes through their pet suffering from these products, files complaints, eventually they will be heard.

    It is about a year now. My cat has fully recovered and now has gained her weight back and more. She was 6 lbs at the time of the poisoning and now over 10 lbs~ She is still loyally by my side in any room I walk through.She no longer tremors and is pain free. It took several months for her to recover from her poisoning, but I am happy to announce she is doing great and so far, this season is flea free without any collars, drops or powders~!

    With the dogs coming in and out frequently, we are bound to get some fleas again this yeat but know I know what products not to use and will never use them again~!

    I read that boiled lemons mixed with water and placed in a spray bottle helps rid fleas, so that is how I plan on trying to treat her if needed.

    While the drops that the Vet office sells are safer than over the counter meds, it is far cheaper to spend the extra money on the flea drops a Vet sells than to have to pay for a reaction on using an inferior product like Hartz or Sargents~

    I also bought a non-toxic gel lice remover from Sally’s Beauty Supply that comes with a fine comb and easily rinces off. If my cat shows any flea infestation I will use only non-toxic free remedies from now on.

    I hope that any and all who come here for help for their pets, that they get the information in time to save their pets & that those who are made aware, get their pets to the Vet ASAP, if they suspect tocixity in their pets.

    You cant let your pet ride it out as its very painful and can debilitate them or kill them ~!!

    🙂 Ave

  50. What is the problem here? Everyone is busy trying to blame and defend. The problem is this stuff is harmful to animals and shouldn’t be allowed to be sold.

    I used Hartz flea drops for CATS on my CATS. Within minutes, their hair started falling out. I washed them immediately with Dawn dishwashing detergent because I knew it is used on animals that get oil on them and it is what I happen to use on my dishes so, I already had some. The poison was only on my cats for 30 minutes at the most and they were sick for two to three days afterward. It took months for their hair to grow back. Thankfully, they are both fine now. I am sorry for other animal lovers and their pets who suffered or even died from this crap that is still being sold.

  51. You are right Squirrel~ the stuff needs to be banned and while it is still on shelves in stores, more victims arise daily~!!
    I filed complaint letters to my Congressman & Senators but until they get a flood of complaints, they wont do anything about it. The laws concerning the ingredients currently used in these pet care products has not yet been regulated, so these companies continue to see knowing that their product kills~
    The Sargent CS told me a year ago, that ‘they comply with current regulations’ … and that it is a ‘small percentage’ that experience reactions and death BUT when you multiply that small percentage by a few hundred million~ it adds up to 1000’s of pets dying annually from assuming this stuff is safe since it is on the market~ when in fact it is deadly.

    It took months for my cat to recover and she only had 2 drops on her neck for about 2 hours. I thought I must have used the dog drops by mistake but later found I had used the cat drops. Either way the stuff is deadly but manufacturers try to shift the blame back on the consumers who may have both types of pets and either put the wrong tube on the wrong pet

    OR the pets lick each other and get poisoned anyway~



    While the others may have some allergic reactions in pets they arent lethal like the cheap, outsourced, ingredients currently being used by Sargents & Hartz . As for Bansect, I used their collars on my cats for 2 years and my cat didnt lose the fur at the point of contact with the collar, but she did have thinner hair, less luster and was a skinny little cat [ about 5lbs] all the while she wore those collars.

    I had no idea the collars also have long term accumulative toxic affects on pets too~!!! People are slowly poisoning their pets, maybe not seeing dramatic signs, [ cat may be simply sleep or hyper or moody] and it certainly shortens their lifespan IF not killing them outright.

    Neurotoxins cause PAIN so depending on how your pet reacts to pain, you may not even be aware its being poisoned~!!

    How insideous is that??

    True people look for cheaper everything nowadays, but in the case of flea remedies, the cheap ones by Hartz & Sargents, arent all that cheap but they are toxic and need to be banned and not sold.

    I now use boiled lemons in a bit of water in a spray bottle as I found on a natural remedy site. Simple and effective!!
    Now it doesnt kill the pets or fleas BUT it has citronella, a natural repellent and we have no fleas in the house this year~ Had we gotten any noticeable amounts in, I would have gone to the vet for the safe remedies.

    Even financially speaking if you dont only consider the agony you pet has to go through as their little bodies ingest these poisons, just to get rid of fleas, that it is better to pay a VET $15 for Advantage/Advantix/Frontline products and keep your pet safe~ than to pay $7-8 for Hartz/Sargents & end up paying $485 VET bill to save the pet afterwards~

    Now with no longer using flea collars etc., my cat has nearly doubled in size over the passed year~ She’s doing great overall.We both got lucky….

    🙂 Ave

  52. WTF? what kind of moron would use something that’s titled clearly not for cats? would you use dog flea drops on YOURSELF if you were infested? this is not a common general problem of america but only a problem of complete idiocy. because of your moronic actions i don’t even find you suitable of owning a cat. clearly “do not use on cats” is completely incomprehensible to you. a level-headed person would’ve actually researched why NOT to use dog flea drops on cats instead of blindly NOT following the label. no wonder why america ranks so low in terms of education. i hope your cat runs away before you kill it.

  53. To: wtf31~ [email protected]

    With your opening comment starting with “WTF”, you declared your own ignorance for nor even reading the entire story. There was NO LABELING on the package that was used for the cat and at the time there was NO WARNING on it either, just a picture of cats and some foreign language printing, with pictures that showed to put the drops on the back of the neck.
    It was a pre-assumption hours after the cat had her reaction and was already at the Vet for her emergency care, that I began to doubt and assume that perhaps it was puppy drops instead of the cat flea drops, which was why I initially wrote that I thought it was puppy meds on a cat. Many over the counter meds are actually interchangeable for small pets such as the worming meds which go by animal weights, however the point you missed which injecting your vulgar opinion shows you lack the ability to read through a matter before judging. Shooting from the butt instead of the brain sort of..
    The point is that while NOW they do put larger warnings on the junk they sell over the counter which consumers may think is safe, that the stuff is poison, whether it be for cats or dogs, it is created overseas ~ outsourced from the USA and quality control is lacking. Sargents Flea Drops were the actual ones I used and their own representative that was contacted told us that ‘sometimes’ a vat is mixed too strong or too weak and it is hard for them to know until someone brings it to their attention and that in order for them to do anything, they need the vat numbers to then to a check and or recall~!!!
    Therefore they push and sell the crap til someone uses it and their animal has the reaction and IF the owner saves the card and receipt the poison comes on, they will then pay the Vet Bill~!! They are literally getting away with killing 1000’s of cats and dogs annually causing agonizing deaths and serious injuries and in some cases permanent damage causing nerve pain in pets that can last them their entire lives~!!!
    Current govt regulations are NOT adequate and so we are working towards awareness for other consumers to learn from some of our mistakes~ while some people may use varying doses on various animals [ particularly some who will by a large dog dose and divide it over severals small dogs ] under assumptions that it safe, when it fact nothing with pyrethins is safe for any pet~!!
    Add to that the fact that some ‘vats’ may be stronger or weaker, you can have a consumer apply the drops according to directions, exactly and it can still harm or kill their pet~!!
    Since the reactions vary and accumulate in a pet’s system, a pet can have a slow long term reaction that may not be even initially noticeable to the owner other than lethargy when in fact the animal is more likely in excruciating pain and trying to sleep it off~ [ happens to cats & dogs like this sometimes!]
    We had at that time bought several vials both Hartz & Sargents on sale at a store that had them for cats & dogs. The vial used had been removed from its cardstock backing prior to use. The directions were not in English as happens sometimes with some products, but the pictures indicated where to apply the drops, and so they were applied for the first and last time ever~
    Once the cat started the violent reaction, she was immediately brought for vet care and saved.Many other people do not associate the drops with sudden onset of such violent symptoms and dont bring their pets for immediate care. When the reaction is so violent, Vet care is vital to the survival of the pet~ as the toxin enters the sebaceous glands under the pet’s fur and spreads all over its body.Immediate detox by repeated bathing with Dawn detergent helps remove the toxins from the surface skin and it part of the treatment, but in and of itself is not enough as it depends on how much the pet has absorbed already. The m ore they absorb, the greater the damage . My cat needed muscle relaxers and sedatives for several days as well as IV fluids to counteract the vomiting and subsequent dehydration.
    It took over 3 months for my cat to recover.She lost alot of fur which simply fell out in random spots on her side and down by her hind area even the drops were only placed behind her neck [ she had NO fur loss behind the neck~]
    It was forums like this one, that once I began to research while my cat was in the hospital that I became aware of how serious this matter is and how widespread~
    If you had been bothered to read the entire thread, you would have seen the correction that it was actually cat drops used on cats as my son checked what was left and showed me that none of the puppy drops were used as they were in the brown Hartz tubes and the white tube I used was the Sargents for cats~ I had a ‘single dose’ vial and split it among 3 cats, so if anything, it should not have worked as effectively~ Instead even that 1/3 dose was enough to nearly kill my cat~!! The other 2 cats were washed off within an hour of getting the drops and both were okay yet both also lost some fur and one had several bouts of vomiting~
    My cat has since made a full recovery and has regained all her lost weight and increased in size. She was 6 lbs at the time of the accident and now is over 10 lbs~ and doing very well.
    Perhaps you can use a little education in internet commenting etiquette and manners~

  54. Sorry to hear about your poor cat 🙁 Wally’s has developed an ALL NATURAL flea oil that our customers swear by for their dogs and cats 🙂 Hope this helps!

  55. wow! For people who claim to love your pets, I would hate to be an unloved pet. Accidents can and do happen. And, I’m not speaking about every post, but YIKES. People – do some research. I wouldn’t let half of you near my pets. And I don’t feel remotely bad for that half of you. I only feel bad for the poor souls in your care. Shame on you.

  56. If a product said “Do not use on children”, would you chance it on a 4 year old? No.

    My sympathies for your situation, however that is a manmade problem. Unfortunately, you did that, no one made you disregard the warning on the container.

    Perhaps you should think things through a little more thoroughly before endangering your animal.

  57. Well if you read beyond the first post you would have found that the vile I used on the cat was actually the cat one. my son corrected me as he found the ones for the dogs were all there and only the cat vile was missing. I wrote the first post right when it happened, assuming that I must have used the dog one but I didnt. Still its been an education about flea remedies for animals and how the FDA lest manufacturers like Hartz & Sargents and others get away with poisoning so many pets a year~!

    Since the original writing, my cat Napolean has fully recovered and is doing great at my daughter’s house, away from my son’s pets that come in & out and brought in the fleas my cat had caught 2-3 yrs ago.

    His white cat Fluffy, however was also an indoor cat but caught fleas from his dog going in & out. Not wanting to use any drops, powders or shampoos on her, we opted for a flea collar so bought the Hartz Ultra Guard Plus and she wore it a few weeks, seemed ok but shedding a bit more than usual, then acted like hse had a urinary tract infection, so we were going to bring her to the vet, but then when he told me about her I recognized how she was acting not to be urinary tract but symptoms of flea poisoning as she was only laying around hiding and not eating. I told him he needed to take her to theVet in the morning anyway and to tell the Vet she had that collar on 3-4 wks. We removed the collar when she showed for sure she was sick… it was too late. She died that night before we could get her to the Vet… So even the collars kill the cats and when I was bagging her up so he could bury her, saw 100’s of fleas on her underbelly so the dang collar didnt even get rid of the fleas but poisoned her~!

  58. My heart just goes out to these animals!! I just lost my cat Missy. She was 6 years old and the Vet said she had kidney disease. I put her down 3 days later (last Wed.) – one of the hardest things to do! She is my forever friend and I couldn’t just sit around and not investigate this. All flea meds I believe are toxic are they not? (I haven’t read all the labels on all the brands) however, some better than others but still harmful? I guess I am not 100% sure about ANY of them. I always used Advantage on my 3 cats – the Vet said to use it ALL year round – so I did. My cats were indoors except I had 1 that was indoor/outdoor. I never felt comfortable when I gave it to them. I put it on the kitchen counter “UN-OPENED” and the min. the cats would walk into the kitchen a few feet away – they KNEW what was up on that counter top! My Missy Cat would always “Squint” her eyes and then make a funny face and run and hide. When I would get her & put the stuff on her – sometimes she would growl. My cat was SUPER LOVED and she NEVER growled at me otherwise. For her to growl meant something. She hated that stuff!! So- about 2 years ago I said to myself “Maybe I will use a cheaper brand on her and see what happens? ” So- I used Hartz and Zodiac Spot On Plus. She acted just fine with that stuff. I really don’t care what brand you use – the dollar amount you spend – aren’t they ALL toxic? In the back of my head I have always wondered and would always ask the Vet – and tell the Vet her symptoms – they always said it is 100% safe! Also- You may get a shocker here after reading the above stories- the Vet Clinic in Seattle, Wa. (I won’t say which city) well, they are a “Cat Clinic only” and they always sold me the DOG ADVANTAGE and told me that the Advantage dog or cat was ALL the same exact ingredients but said the Manufacturing Co. puts it into different packaging – labeling “cat” or “Dog” and they said it is ONLY because of the “DOSAGE Amount Given” – that is it!! So I always bought what they called “Red Dog” – It came in a tube and they gave you a syringe for the amount that was suppose to be given according to their weight. They always marked it with a permanent black marker as well. I did that for years. Well, my Missy Cat had to be put down last Wed. for kidney failure – I am going ALL Natural for ridding fleas from now on!! My heart just broke and a piece of me did die that day. She didn’t want to go and she even tried to come to … but she also wanted me to fix her pain. I wished I could have fixed her pain and still have her. I wished I would have listened to that voice in the back of my head saying this stuff was toxic!! It kills me – I believed what was told to me and her reaction told me something different!! Her reaction =’s RED FLAG!! If I had only did my homework in the first place and don’t believe what everyone tells you! RIP Missy Cat – You will be forever and ever loved and missed!! Can someone please give me a web-site or e-mail address so we can take this issue on and try to get it banned? I am just so heart broken!!

  59. I am so sorry to hear about your cat and am still angered that the FDA lets the manufacturers get away with this continual poisoning of our pets.

    Sure millions dont die like they say, or at least dont die as fast, but it is toxic to all animals so using them is poisoning them
    Frustration is we need flea control for them, as the dang fleas can also eventually kill them~!!
    I tried some natural remedies on my cat after that episode a few years ago but with other animals [the dogs] going in and out all the time, they still infested our cats.

    I miss my cat, but at least she is now living safe and flea free at my daughter’s home. I have a new house but live with my son and he has 6 dogs~ so for the time being my cat is where she is safer and can stay healthier…

    His cat, Fluffy, died last fall from wearing a flea collar. I had thought it was the lesser of evils and hoped it would work for her but she just got lythargic, stayed in the corner of the bathroom and when she started acting wobbly it was already too late.

    I did bathe her before she died. I did it as soon as I realized she was actually sick and only thing was the collar so I removed it and washed her with Dawn dish detergent as recommended by vets.. She seemed somewhat relieved and didnt mind the bathing or attention and cuddling in the towel when I was drying her. She even began to walk a little.. Itg was a Sunday however and all vets within 100 miles were closed.

    I planned on bringing her to the vet in the morning but after eating next morning and going back to sleep on her bed, she died!! We still miss her but her death became the deciding factor in me not bringing my cat back here.

    I love my cat and my daughter posts pictures of her and tells me how she is doing, but my cat’s well being comes first and she is safe and doing well at my daughters home.I had my cat since she was a 3 wk old orphan, bottle fed her and had her by my side for 4 years… I do miss her alot.

  60. I came across this page while conduction a search on the effectiveness, or lack thereof, of flea drop treatment. I could not resist posting.

    I cannot fathom anyone wanting to blame the maker of the flea drops as you seem to want to do. The label clearly stated DO NOT USE ON CATS. Apparently you thought the warning was there to temp you to try your luck.

    It’s bad enough for your poor old cat to have to go through such an ordeal. It’s made worse by your failure to accept responsibility. Yes, you are looking to blame the manufacturer of the product for your willful disregard for the warning instructions and, more importantly, your cat. Bet the flea drops for the cat cost much less than the vet bill. Next time you want to save a buck don’t do it on your pets life!!

  61. Hi Joe,
    I certainly can appreciate your impulse to jump in and agree that packaging on these products now differiates between dogs and cats, the packaging on the products I bought were labeled in another language and sold in a discount store, which was why I thought I had used the wrong one. If you were to have read further on my subsequent posts, all the dog packets/tubes were still in the drawer and only the cat flea drops were gone. I mistakenly assumed that I must have used the dog drops but did in fact use the cat drops which were from Sargeants.
    Years ago manufacturers didnt post clear enough warnings on either product which has been one of the problems people here have been lobbying for change and now when I go to the stores I do see the warning which victims have caused the companies to do.

    I actually used only 1/3 of the cat drops on my cat that had the reaction. She was wearing a flea collar that was just a few weeks in use as were my sons 2 cats. They each were still covered with fleas and I had only 1 tube of cat flea drops.I planned on returning to store next day for 2 more packs, but meanwhile to try and relieve each cat, divided the drops on the back of each of their necks.

    One cat had no problem. The second cat did loose fur and was sleepier than usual. MY CAT began running around the house crashing into walls and foaming at the mouth. Her eyes were bulging, claws out and she was screaming! I called my son to catch her and put her in the little kennel cage so we could rush her to vet, which we did after calling all over to see who was even open. The vet that treated her had a vet tech going to the clinic at 9pm so we were there waiting for her and when she came we gave her the cat and the tube wondering if they needed were going to have to look up the code numbers on the tube for Poison Control, as I thought perhaps I got a bad batch since we bought it at a discount store.

    She bathed my cat in detergent, hooked up an IV , gave her a shot of Valium & Robaxin and told us to call in the morning and to leave the cat for observation. I should have asked for the return of the tube, but it didnt occur to me. All I thought was that I might have used one of the tubes of the dog drops since some were out of the box and all were in the same drawer.We had been buying a few at a time anticipating flea season but planned on doing all the animals at the same time, which was why I only had 1 tube so far for the cats.The stuff is all expensive. I had never used drops on any of our animals before and havent purchased any since except directly from the Vet long after this happened.

    Next day I was called to pick up my cat and while they initially told me $120 hit me with a bill for almost $500 which shocked me since all they did was wash her with DAWN and give her 1 bag of IV to prevent possible dehydration and Valium to calm her down and Robaxin which is a muscle relaxer for humans but is given in lower doses to animals.

    What I was paying for was their knowledge and expertise in handling a situation that I couldnt handle as I didnt know what to do.They saved my cat’s life and she is thriving today/

    When I returned home from leaving her there that first night, I began to look up things about flea drops and saw that the biggest problem was people buying the larger packs of drops and using lesser amounts on animals which was cheaper and seemed to make sense. Assuming the fleas on cats and dogs are the same bugs, many like me would have assumed as I did that the pesticide used was the same BUT IT ISNT~ I know that now. I didnt know that then.

    I assumed I must have used the dog drops because of the reaction my cat had. That is why in my first letter here, I said I used the puppy drops but in fact I had actually used the cat drops because my son counted all the tubes in the drawer and read the labels on the cards that held some that were out of their box – and said

    “You know what mom? You didnt use the dog drops on the cat! All the dog & puppy tubes are right here and none are gone or missing but I cant find the tube that goes to the Sargeants card~ so it wasnt your fault. You did use the cat drops!!”

    While that was a partial relief, I was still freaked out at what happened to my cat and after she came home, it took over 3 months for he to recover. She lost alot of fur, actual bald spots above her tail on her back and some on her neck where the drops were applied but the baldness spread out around the lesion the drops had caused. She lost weight and ate food very slowly and slept most of the time.

    Gradually she began to grow back her hair and put on weight. She is thriving today and has doubled her weight since the incident.

    What you miss here, is that many people dont know the dangers involved with these drops in the first place. They are neurotoxins that once on the fur/skin of the animal, seep into their skin and enter their sebaceous glands and then work through their lymph system and emit the pesticide through the hair follicles and skin of the animal from head to toe.

    This is why some animals get bald spots on their hind sections or limbs, no where near the site the drops were placed on them.

    Animals living within the same house can also lick one another and it only takes the minutest amount licked to poison a cat or dog~ There are numerous reports now online and even on this site where one animal got the drops, another licked it off and got sick or died.

    Also since these are neurotoxins and designed for skin and fur when ingested they can cause all sorts of side effects, varying from animal to animal. After all its pesticides.

    There is a case lsited here on site a few years ago where a family was washing their black dog in a kiddie pool in their yard using flea shampoo and rinsed their dog well with a garden hose afterwards, but apparently not enough. The dog didnt get sick immediately but gradually over the next several days, getting weaker and sleepier each day til it was obvious something was wrong so they took the dog to the Vet but it was too late and the dog died from the absorption of the flea repellent in the shampoo.

    Most people , at least a few years ago would assume all the over the counter flea drops were the same but more was given for larger animals and less for smaller and so instead of buying according to pet size, especially if say they had 3-4 puppies might buy 1 adult dose to save money and divide the drops on all 3-4 animals..thats economics and a fair assumption when you dont know how dangerous the stuff is and expecting if it is sold openly like in Walmart & supermarkets that the assumption would be that the stuff is safe.

    The govt to date still does not regulate the production nor supervise the making of these flea drops. I spoke with a representative from Sargeants that told me they outsource to other countries to get this stuff and when a batch is bad they need the code numbers to check back where it was manufactured so they can correct the problem.The woman actually told me that they have had batches that were too concentrated and or batches misfilled with too much or too little. She said she could find out what happened to my cat by checking the batch IF I had the tube numbers – which the Vet discarded~ She said had I the vat #’s and they checked it that they would have paid my Vet bills.

    Sargents Representative told me that only 1 in about 10,000 have allergic reactions and that for the majority their product works as described when applied correctly. She offered to have me fill out forms and submit the vet bill but later on wrote me back that since they couldnt verify which vat it came from as the tube was gone, that they could not pay the vet.

    So anyone who uses these products,[flea drops, powder,collars, shampoo] should keep their receipts and the box/bottles and the empty tubes[drops] when done ,put them in a baggie and store them for at least 3 months since many animals can have slow reactions to these as well as fast reactions like my cat did. You need to save the packaging and receipts for proof of usage when you confront the company responsible.

    There are 10’s of 1000’s of pets that die agonizingly from these products each year~ but the companies sell millions so it is cheaper to possibly pay claims than to correct the ingredients.

    The govt to date has not effectively addressed this issue to help protect pets and pet owners.The rules are not sufficient to ensure the safety of the products for public usage but it is big business and they go the route of profit vs liability and most pet owners whose animals are having slow reactions are not even aware that it is from these products.

    Prior to the incident with my cat, she had worn the white flea collars for over 2 years, since she was a baby. She was always thin and remained small, shedded all the time and had a lack luster coat since I first got her. She never took her collar off, but often scratched around it and while she didnt get bare spots nor did she ever get any visible sores, she was being continually poisoned without me knowing it.This is happening to many other pets as we speak and their owners likewise are unaware. People weigh out the benefits and see their animal may be flea free, but they are not aware of the long term effects on the pet and how it will shorten their lifespans.

    I have since moved my cat to my daughters where she is the only pet in the house. I lived there with her for 6 months and she is an indoor cat still and since she has not had any collar or drops has now doubled her weight and her coat is shiney. She isnt exposed to any animals that can give her fleas. She is allergic to both fleas and flea products so I will never put her at risk with another animal to transmit either to her.

    It is good at least, that now when I see Sargeants & Hartz etc products in stores that the manufacturers have at least adhered to all our complaints and made more visible warnings on the packaging~ Most beneficial since their lettering is usually so small that anyone with visual problems wearing glasses or not and cant easily read the fine print~ that they now can see the warning and hopefully this will save lives of some pets.

    Yet the problem with these products is still the same, they are more dangerous to use than most people realize.

    Economy is tight and when a pet owner seeks relief for their animal many are deterred by the use of the more expensive products such as Advantix & Frontline but my vet told me that they use buffers in their products that make them safer to use on pets than the cheaper ones like Hartz & Sargents~

    It is definitely cheaper in the long run IF you have to use any products to use the Advantix, Frontline and there is a newer one on the market called Pet Armor that while they seem expensive, can save you a vet visit and the trauma that the pet can undergo from the cheaper ones.So in the long run its cheaper the use the more expensive products as they are a bit safer.

    We still have 5 dogs and no longer keep cats in this house to prevent cross flea infestations since the dogs go in and outside, which was how my cat had caught fleas a few years ago.I miss her but see her when I go back to my daughter’s house and know my cat is thriving and can now live a long healthy life free from fleas and poisons.

    We have learned alot from this site and researching these products and will not use any of them. My son carefully inspects his dogs daily and uses dish detergent to wash each one weekly and we have not had the same flea problem we had years back when we were using the flea shampoos and drops .

    There are sites online that have other tips on preventing and dealing with fleas without pesticides being used. There are products at Lowes and Home Depot that can be applied to the yard and or perimeters of the yards to cut down on bugs and provide safer surroundings for pets. We keep the grounds around our dogs, clear and clean at all times which has helped them to remain bug free, healthier and safer.

  62. TO: Brenda WHO POSTED ABOVE ON March 31st, 2012


    National Pesticide Information Center (NPIC) 1-800-858-7378.
    Hartz 1-800-275-1414.

    I am setting up a page for reports that will supplement this site and refer people here as this site has been dedicated to educating people, unfortunately most of us have gotten our education after the fact, so my site will try to promote before the fact to get more awareness out there.
    The pages will be :
    http://www.artrave.com/profiles/blogs/flea-drops-kill which I can advertise to the public along with my art and direct people to come here to find out more. I will also note this site and discussion in my other blogs.

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