Our Experience With Hartz Flea Drops

We’d used Hartz flea drops for a couple of months without problems. But this last month, after treating our 6-month-old kitten, we had problems. Apolo became lethargic and started experiencing muscle spasms. He would try to meow, but didn’t seem to have the strength to make any sound. I called the emergency animal hospital and as soon as they heard the words “Hartz flea drops” they asked us to bring him in. Apolo had to spend the night at the hospital to receive treatments, and is now healthy again. But it was a terrifying experience that no one should have to go through. I’ve been in touch with Hartz regarding the problem, but have received the same “canned” response as everyone else here. I sent the vet report and itemized bill as requested. So we’ll see what happens.

Four days after Apolo’s experience, we saw a special report on the news about Hartz. Until then we had no idea how far-reaching this problem truly is. Through the news report, we found this website. We’ve since emailed everyone we know asking them not to use Hartz products of any kind. We also emailed Petsmart and Petco and told them of our experience (that was where we had purchased the drops). Hopefully we can help save at least a few pets.

Stopped someone from buying Hartz drops

My wife and I just got back from the grocery store. You can never help but look at what other people are buying while waiting in the check out line. Today, the lady in front of us was puchasing Hartz Advance Care Flea and Tick drops. I tapped her on the shoulder and told her not to buy them. She handed them over to the cashier and said she didn’t want them. This, of course, after I told her about how she would be spending the rest of the evening at the emergency vet clinic. I also wrote HartzVictims.org on a piece of paper and gave it to her. Hopefully she’ll come to this site and will realize how much grief she’s been spared.

It felt good to make a difference in the tangible world. My wife and I just saved a cat or two!

I was shocked

I am telling my story because i was just so shocked to see all the other pet owners who have went through the same thing. I got on the web to find out more infomation on the ingredient in my flea and tick drops called phenothrin. My mainecoon cat had a severe reaction to this product. He started twitching and acting like he was drunk. It broke my heart to see him this way. I called my vet right away and she said to bath him and get that Hartz flea and tick drops off of him. Well I am the mother of 4, so vet bills are impossible for me. That is why I bought this product to begin with. Now my Opee is sick and I feel helpless. He has had a seizer already and is now calming down some, but I am still not sure he will make it. I got on the web to find some answers for people like me that cannot afford vet bills. I was amazed on all the stories about this product. Now I only wish i would have checked it out before I gave it to my sweet cat Opee. I only hope I can save him from my mistake. Please don’t make the same mistake I did. That is the reason I felt I had to tell my story. The strange thing to me is that if this is so dangerous why is it even on the market????? I read the product information and I never saw anything about seizers and severe twitching. I saw the ingredients, but I am not scientist nor doctor, how would have I known that phenothrin was so toxic?

Re: Piccolo

We are the owners of Piccolo. I brought him home after paying almost $700.00 for them to put him on an IV and take blood tests and charge so much to find out that I would have had to keep paying more and continue to traumatize him. He did start eating again, at least, but no definite answer as to what caused this, except that they admit that Hartz is a harmful product and they believe that it poisoned him and that he had toxins in his system. A few days later, we tried to take off the catheter and was it a difficult time trying to get the tape off that held it on. Finally, the cat took it off himself, when we had given up trying so hard. That was quite a surprise. He is such a loving and intelligent cat. They left the catheter in for me to take him home and if he got worse that I would have to take him to emergency and then they would put on the IV to attach to the catheter. We never left him alone before anywhere, but we did this time and I think it made him nervous and feel that we abandoned him. Anyway, he can’t keep food in him and throws up a few hours after eating. He wants to be close to us, but we are at wits end with this. I’ve contacted Hartz and talked to Rosemary Tini, so if any of you would call her, too, and tell what has happened to your pet. (Please see first story of ours). My vet has faxed them the bills and diagnostic report. So, you must make sure that you call them right away if you know that your animal has been affected by this Hartz Advanced Care Flea and Tick Drops Plus +. Please do this right away, as they will have to recall this product or will have many lawsuits on their hands. Let’s band together.

Mona and Nick from El Segundo, Ca.

Hartz getting mad?

It looks like the Hartz Mountain Corp. has been buying up anti-Hartz domain names: HARTZKILLS.COM, HARTZ-VICTIMS.COM, HARTZKILLSPETS.COM, HARTZVICTIM.COM, HARTZVICTIMS.COM

SECAUCUS, NJ 07094-3605


Administrative Contact:
HARTZ MOUNTAIN CORP. (HM3642-ORG) [email protected]
SECAUCUS, NJ 07094-3605
201 271 4800 fax: 201 271 0342
Technical Contact:
Network Solutions, Inc. (HOST-ORG) [email protected]
21355 Ridgetop Circle
Dulles, VA 20166
1-888-642-9675 fax: 571-434-4620

Record expires on 12-Dec-2004.
Record created on 12-Dec-2002.
Database last updated on 19-Nov-2003 16:28:35 EST.

Domain servers in listed order:


Autoresponse from Hartz

Anna sent me this auto response from Hartz:

Case #: 40983

400 PLAZA DRIVE, SECAUCUS, NEW JERSEY 07094-3688. 201 /271-4800

November 18, 2003

Re: The Hartz Mountain Corporation Sets Record Straight On Inaccuracies

Dear Valued Customer,

In light of several inaccurate media reports regarding our Advanced Care topical insecticide product line, I’m writing to reassure you of the effectiveness and quality of all our flea and tick prevention products.

Hartz has been the leading provider of flea and tick treatments in the United States for nearly 30 years. During that time, Hartz has sold close to 1 billion flea and tick treatments for dogs and cats. In 2000, Hartz introduced Advanced Care Flea & Tick Drops for Dogs and Advanced Care Flea & Tick Drops for Cats. The cat formulation was the first and only flea and tick adulticide product available in the over-the-counter market. It combines an adulticide (phenothrin) with an insect growth
regulator ((S)-methoprene) to offer the broadest spectrum of protection of any flea and tick treatment available today.

In rare instances, any flea and tick product, whether sold over-the-counter or through veterinarians, may cause an adverse reaction in extremely sensitive cats. Just as some humans can have severe reactions to vital medicines, some cats can have a negative reaction to product that is designed to protect them. Hartz takes every reported incident very seriously and initiates a thorough investigation in cooperation with the pet owner.

All manufacturers of flea and tick products are required to notify the EPA every time a consumer raises a concern about a registered product. Hartz must make this notification even if subsequent investigation reveals that the consumer used another manufacturer’s product, the consumer misapplied the product contrary to label directions, or the consumer cannot confirm what product was used. Approximately 90% of the cases that Hartz reports to the EPA fall into one of those categories. In addition, many of the incidents reported to the EPA involve relatively minor symptoms such as excess salivation, temporary hair loss, or minor skin irritation at the application site.

To date, Hartz has sold approximately 90 million Advanced Care flea and tick treatments for dogs and cats. Over a four-year period, the reaction rate for Hartz Advanced Care for Cats has been 0.0004 (one reaction per 25,000 treatments). A review of adverse reaction rates of other flea and tick products clearly demonstrates that the reaction rate for Advanced Care is among the lowest in the industry. For example, a leading brand for dogs and cats distributed through veterinarians has an average of 50 reactions per 25,000 treatments, and another well-known brand has an average of 500 reactions per 25,000 treatments. These reaction rates are available through public documents.

There are risks in using any insecticide, and they are clearly marked on the package. However, important treatments for humans, such as aspirin and penicillin, also carry risks. According to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious diseases, one in ten people have an allergic reaction to penicillin, and on average 400 people in the United States die every year from allergic reactions to penicillin. The Mayo Clinic reports that one in 500 people have an allergic reaction to aspirin.

All our flea and tick products undergo rigorous domestic animal safety and efficacy testing by the Environmental Protection Agency before they are made available to pet owners. Unfortunately, certain news organizations have aired stories that misrepresent the facts and have unnecessarily alarmed their viewers. We want all pet owners to know that they can continue to rely on Advanced Care products for unsurpassed protection, providing their animals are in good health and follow the directions carefully. These products protect pets and their owners from fleas, ticks and mosquitoes which carry such diseases as West Nile virus, Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain Spotted fever, Ehrlichiosis and serious skin irritations.

Hartz works constantly with the EPA to find ways to improve its products. In November 2002, Hartz and the EPA agreed to re-label its Advanced Care products for cats. The new packages included an improved application procedure and a more detailed precautionary statement. The consumer response to the new packaging has been excellent and we are pleased to report that these improvements have made a good product even better.

As good product stewards, Hartz continues to work closely with the EPA on all its registered products. Contrary to news reports, Advanced Care’s adverse events are being monitored like all registered topical products, and the EPA has never required Hartz to recall its Advanced Care products or change the formulation. If you have any questions regarding our Advanced Care line, please do not hesitate to contact your sales or customer service representative.

Thank you for your continued support. We value our relationship highly and look forward to providing you with the highest quality products going forward.

Very truly yours,

Robert Devine
President and Chief Executive Officer

Hartz Mountain Corp.
Consumer Relations Dept.
400 Plaza Drive
Secaucus, NJ 07094
(20l) 271-4800

Hartz accepts no responsibility

After four of our cats have been horrifyingly sickened and/or died from Hartz topical flea/tick control, I notified Hartz Mountain Corporation. As you may have guess, Hartz is unwilling to accept any responsibility. Admitting guilt will obviously open many legal avenues for pet owners who have lost a loved one to this toxic product. I urge all who have experienced a loss due to any Hartz product to contact the Environmental Protection Agency. Currently, there are many cases being reviewed. Hopefully, if enough people report, chances are good that the product will either be taken off the market or the formula will be changed.