Why Are Hartz Products on the Shelves?

I have been really confused as to why our indoor cats have had a severely bad case of fleas recently. We have one adult female and two 4 month old males. Yesterday I purchased Hartz products to try to combat the problem. I bought the drops, spray, and powder. Last night, I applied only the drops the back of their necks. Within an hour, all three cats became completely lifeless, shivering, and acting very strange. The kittens are normally so lively that we barely can keep up with them. One of the male cats was laying on the back of couch, and when I turned back to look at him he had massive amounts of drool dripping from his mouth. I instantly knew something was not right with that medication. I put them in the bath and bathed them with Dawn lavender dish soap immediately. After all of this, I looked online to see if anyone else experienced these problems after applying this poison and was shocked to see the horrible stories. I was absolutely beside myself and felt so guilty for not checking the reviews prior to this purchase. Through the night, the cats slept the entire time without getting up for anything. This morning the smaller male kitten seems to be more active but the bigger male has not been himself and being very still for the most part. My adult cat is now hiding somewhere in the house which is also unlike her. I will never use another Hartz product again. I don’t understand how in the world this company can continue to sell these products? There should be a massive lawsuit against them! Is there something that we can all do to get this poison off the shelves??

9 Replies to “Why Are Hartz Products on the Shelves?”

  1. As a licensed vet tech, our vet and myself always urge people not to use those products. Most products available at mass retailers like wal mart and target are ineffective and some are even dangerous, as you discovered. Because flea prevention is actually a pesticide and not a drug, no report can be made to the FDA. Bathing your cats was the best thing you could have done and may have saved their lives. My recommendation would be to use reputable products (see what your vet recommends). Yes the products from your vet are more expensive, but that’s because they have the research to back up their efficacy and safety.

  2. Kittens are not supposed to use flea and tick remedy’s. Take your animals to the vet if you can not read the directions. First you need to separate your pets until the drops dry because they will clean each other and if you are feeding this to your pets yes, they can die. Kennel multiple animals for a few hours after applying and that prevents them from licking it off of EACH OTHER because if you put it on right they will never be able to reach the area you put it on themselves and separation will prevent the other animals from consuming it. These symptoms are all from them consuming the produce. Again Do not blame the product for owner error! TAKE YOUR PETS TO A VET instead of trying to save some money. Fleas and ticks are a horrible thing to kill and people think the crap they put on their pets will be a miracle cure. (and more than one remedy eg. powder, spray, collars and drops should not be used together a VET will tell you to ONLY use one product not one of everything from the same company!!) Be a responsible owner and talk to your vet before using over the counter remedy’s. Would you do extreme treatment to your own child with out calling the doctor? Think about the responsibility you have as a owner…… READ THE INSTRUCTIONS!!! There are warnings on the box for this exact response of your animal but you still bought it and applied it now you are saying it is the product that is 100% responsible. It may be part the product but usually owner induced!! I don’t mean to sound mean I just work with my vet and even call him with a question before I try a remedy and I have discussed this exact issue and with his help I have been able to use such products with no adverse affect and yes I have had to change a flea and tick product because my animals skin could not tolerate the small test spot!!!

  3. Hilary – I really appreciate your input and have a much better understanding of why this company is allowed to continue it’s sale of products. Kristine – other than trying to show off you should probably read closer and also take into consideration reasons why I may have bought these products to begin with prior to making snide comments. As a responsible PARENT and PET OWNER I did note the directions prior to purchasing. If you read my post – you would have realized the kittens were 4 months old. This is not about saving money whatsoever. Buying this product was the result of living in a rural community where this was the one option at the nearest pharmacy. Had I known better, I would have taken the hour trip to have more options. Please take a step off your momentary Internet stardom and consider situations before making a fool of yourself.

  4. Leena, I am sorry to hear about your troubles, and sorry that one AWFUL person tried to place blame on you. It is not your fault at all. The products are POISON even when used exactly as the package directs. It is just heartless and cruel to come to a site like this, where people are upset and heartbroken and looking for answers, and point fingers and make someone feel worse.

  5. I am so sorry to hear about your kitties and hope they all make a full recovery. It is so frustrating to try to do what is best for your pets only to have such a horrible experience.

    I have had good luck with Advantage for cats. My vet recommended Revolution for the cat that I have who has been battling ear mites. These are more expensive ( buy for 12 cats and 9 dogs monthly) but I believe sometimes products like these are a little more reputable.

    Kristine, please get off of your soap box. It seems obvious that Hilary followed the directions. These are poisons and I personally believe they should be more strictly controlled. I’m sure we are all so happy you have never had a problem (other than spelling) but it should not take a vet visit + an expensive product to give your animal relief from parasites.

    Hilary, since you’re obviously a bit shy of using harsh chemicals, there are some other remedies that can help the kitties. If you keep them indoors, try using a flea comb and a bowl of soapy water and a bowl of alcohol. Comb out the fleas and eggs, kill them in the alcohol, rinse the comb in soapy water and comb again. This won’t help with re-infestations, but will give them some relief for now.

  6. Kristine. Reading you post, actually had me laughing out loud. Thank you, i needed a good belly laugh.
    Now, with all seriousness. The majority of animals WILL NOT consume a flea medication.The smell is way to strong, not to mention how it would have to taste. An animals nose is very sensitive. I can assure you, ingesting the flea medication is not going to be a problem for most.

  7. Lava Pitbull is correct. But not only smell, but taste. Flea drops have bittering agents in them. Trust me, a cat that tries to consume it will get a very nasty taste in their mouth and stop.

    You did good giving them a bath, that’s exactly what is recommended when they receive a toxic level of pyrethroids. The only thing I can say is, yeah, you shouldn’t have bought all three types, but you only applied one, so good on you.

    Hartz products are indeed a bad idea for cats. Apparently, the most common cause of toxicosis in cats is using dog-only products like those from Hartz. But even their cat-specific product is moderately toxic to cats, so wtf hartz?

    It’s not like the chemical in Advantage (imidacloprid) is patented… oh, wait… it’s prescription only… that’s retarded… if they made imidacloprid OTC, then most of these problems should go away…

  8. So that Kristen girl is a fucking bitch. I’m sorry what happened to you. Same thing happened with our cats and kittens. We lost 7 cats July 4th from this awful product. now we don’t trust any flea medication besides what our vet tells us. We use a flea comb now. I comb our new kittens 4 times a day. I know a bit much but gives me something to do.since my family lives in the middle of no where we have more fleas than usual. I hope you don’t blame yourself of what happened, my mom did and it was the hardest thing in the world to see her cry. I did find her a himilyan cat that has been in the animal shelter for years and she is a grouch! That’s my moms therapy. I hope you feel better. Just know it is not your fault!

  9. I really think it is sad that people like Kristen exist in this world. Not only are her comments ignorant they are also insulting. She states that you would not use an OTC product on your child. People use OTC products on their children and themselves every day. If your child has a low-grade fever do you rush them to a doctor? Some people who have money to throw away might. The first thing most people do is go to the drug store or Walmart and buy Tylenol. There is OTC cough medicine, cough drops, allergy drugs and the list goes on. It is totally understandable that you think these products are safe. It is also understandable that anyone would think OTC flea remedies sold in the same stores would be safe. Most people would accept that as these products are sold along side reputable products and have been on the shelves for many, many years and have commercials and such that they should be safe. Even reading the directions and using the product EXACTLY as recommended many animals will have some reaction to them. The best way to get them off the market is by spreading the word. If Hartz won’t stop making them Walmart, a company that is all about the all mighty dollar, will stop carrying them if no one buys them. Walmart no longer carries milk that has come from cows that have been treated with recombinant bovine growth hormone because people complained to them. Complain loudly and have your friends and neighbors complain to the stores that sell the crap. There is a fairly recent (within the last year) issue of Readers Digest with an article titled something like “50 things your vet won’t tell you” that has information regarding OTC flea and tic treatments. Everyone with a pet should read the article. One of the vets says that these products often kill pets and leave the fleas still swarming on their dead bodies. That is when the products are applied properly!
    Yes you should call your vet if you are unsure about something! I totally agree with Kristen on that point. However, when a product has a reputation as safe and is marked as such people will use it. I have used it. I will never use it again after having read the Readers Digest. Fleas are better than those poisons and frequent baths with a baby shampoo or dish soap will get rid of most of them.
    I really hope your babies are doing well and have no lasting side effects. I also pledge as a Reiki worker to send loving energy to all the pets effected by this as well as to the Hartz company that they will see that their products are dangerous and correct the error of their ways.
    Much love and Blessings

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