I treated our cat,Gretel, a very active and healthy 1 year old, with Hartz Ultraguard Plus Flea Spray and also treated her with the spot treatment Ultraguard Pro. Within 4 days she was acting lethargic and “stoned” . I took her to the vet the next day. They bathed her, gave her fluids, cortisone, antibiotics and (believe it or not) another dose of Flea control. I picked her up after 3 days there. Within 3 more she could not walk at all. I went back to the vet, they gave her more fluids and I brought her home. Over the next 6 days she got weaker, finally having 2 major seizures yesterday evening. Over night her breathing became more troubled. She died this morning about 8:30. Her weight went from a healthy 11 pounds to 6.6 pounds in 2 weeks. I was feeding her by syringe (water, vitamins, broth) for the last week of her life.
The active ingredients of these treatments are S-methoprene and an organophospate (Tetrachlorvinphos) in the same family as Sarin poison. These are both neurotoxins that that are designed to affect the nervous systems of insects and , sadly, any animals or humans that contact them. In fact, organophosphates are the leading cause of accidental poisoning in the world and is suspected of connections to numerous child and adult conditions in humans.
The labeling on the bottle might as well be non-existent. The warning is printed under a flap on the bottle that is virtually impossible to peel back… and the font is so small you can barely see it. Further, they give NO indication as to how lethal their product can be.
This product NEEDS to be in a box with a fully printed instruction sheet with warnings as to the dangerous poison it contains, with FULL disclosure as to the side effects, symptoms of overdose, etc… It also needs to contain information on an antidote.
I think it is criminal for a company to market such a dangerous product without any consideration to the damage it can do to animals, but also to people who may contact it.
It obviously does not take much to cause a severe and irreversible reaction!
TREATMENT AND ANTIDOTE: I searched high and low to find something I could do to help my friend. If you get your pet to the vet soon enough, a shot of Atropine MAY help (according to the literature). After that the symptoms will progress as outlined above. In humans it is possible to arrest the onset, but once the damage is done, it is not reversible. In pets I think the treatment is not available. The vets (I went to a second for another opinion) were somewhat stymied. Her reflexes were fine, she looked not too bad and was fairly alert with moments of disorientation. Even on her last day she was fairly aware of things. Her blood panel was pretty normal, with a low red cell count (we ascribed to the fleas). The damage of this poison is to the nerves. It affects their ability to transmit and eventually the victim dies.
I was unable to find anything more on possible treatments. Please, if someone knows more than me, add it to the website.