My cat died this morning July 1, 2012

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.


Almost lost my baby Oliver

A few months ago, my sweet little cat Oliver contracted some ear mites, and I could just tell he was miserable, so I went and bought Hartz ear mite treatment and applied it to his ears. Within moments, he started drooling uncontrollably, urinated on himself, wouldn’t move, and hid from us, which, we knew was unusual, because he is normally the sweetest, most needy cat in the world. It was a Saturday, in the middle of the night, and we rushed him to the pet emergency room, but didn’t really have the money to get him treatment. They were kind enough to wash him thoroughly, but by then his back legs weren’t working, and I honestly thought that he wouldn’t survive the night. I felt HORRIBLY guilty, and stayed up with him the whole night. Miraculously, he made it through that night, but he still had no control over his bladder or his back legs, and we kept expecting the worst. It was almost a week before he finally gingerly started walking around on his own again, and weeks after that he was miraculously back to his old self. It was a miracle, and I know, from reading these stories how lucky I truely was. Today, Ollie is a happy and healthy kitty, back to his overly affectionate self.
I tell everyone I can what Hartz did to my sweet baby. I just wish no one else had to go through what we did.

Hartz Flea/Tick Drops paralyzed my Westie Dog

My dog Rose Marie’s story.
West Highland White Terrier – female-18 months old

We applied Hartz 3 in 1 flea and tick drops on my Westie on August 5, 2010. I had previously used the same drops on her with no problems 30 days earlier.
That evening after applying the drops around 3:00 in the afternoon, I did not notice any reaction. At bed time, Rose sleeps with us and seemed restless to find a sleep spot on the bed. (Usually goes right to bed where ever you put her) Didn’t think anything of it until this morning she does not lift her head when we get out of bed. Just layed there flat on her side sleeping, I finish my shower and she has still not moved. I put her on the floor and she will not stand! OH MY GOD!!! She is paralyzed!!!  I carry her downstairs and take her out to the back yard, she will not walk or stand,  her rear and hind legs are paralyzed.
I remember that I put the flea drops on her the afternoon before.
I give her a bath in case the drops could be the cause of her problem. She is trembling slightly but I am not sure if that is from being cold from her bath or trembling from the reaction. Husband takes her to the vet and they think it could be a reaction to the flea drops.

As a precaution they x-ray both hind legs to check for injury (No injury)

They give her a charcoal treatment to reduce and absorb the toxins in her system. The vet gives her another bath to wash off the drops as much as possible. Vet calls Hartz to report the incident and to get direction from the company of what they recommend. They tell Vet to do what they are doing and she should be fine. Hartz did say it sounded like a overdose of the flea and Tick drops!  We now have a case number for our incident.

It is 3:00 on Friday August 6th , 2010 – 24 hours after the flea drops where applied. Called the vet to check on Rose and no change, she is still trembling and they have her on diazepam to help her relax.

When we picked her up at 5:00 that evening she was responsive and walking. She threw up all evening and into the night and could not keep water or food down. On Saturday morning she threw up one time and has not since then. She seems to be completely back to normal even wanting to play with her toys.

Her vet said that the 48 hours would be the time frame to know if she would recover or not. Some dogs that have a reaction to this insecticide get kidney and liver damage and die. Others do like my Rose and recover fully.

It is like Russian roulette with these flea and tick drops, I have been giving all my pets over the counter flea and tick drops for years and have never had one have a bad reaction. I will not be taking that chance again.

I am so glad someone posted there story so I could find it when I had a problem with my westie. If I had not read others stories I might not have realized what was wrong with her and waited to long for her to be treated and risk permanent damage.

Products that can harm animals need to be off the market. Our vet said they are not even allowed to make this product anymore. Why can they still sell it? It is not only in the flea drops it is in all of there flea products, dips, shampoos etc…