Monday, October 19, 2009

Increased Scrutiny of Flea and Tick Control Products for Pets | Pesticides | US EPA

Heads up folks... be careful of what you use. These products can be dangerous for your pets! For that matter they can be dangerous for you and your children as well.

The following article is from the EPA's website.

Remember your furry friends depend on you being well informed, and using good judgement.

Increased Scrutiny of Flea and Tick Control Products for Pets

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is intensifying its evaluation of spot-on pesticide products for flea and tick control due to recent increases in the number of reported adverse reactions in pets treated with these products. Adverse reactions reported range from mild effects such as skin irritation to more serious effects such as seizures and, in some cases, death of the pet.

Flea and tick products can be appropriate treatments for protecting your pets and your family’s health because fleas and ticks can transmit disease. While many people use the products with no harm to their pets, EPA recommends that pet owners take precautions when using these products. People should carefully follow label directions and monitor their pets for any signs of an adverse reaction after application, particularly when using these products for the first time. Also, before use of these products on weak, aged, medicated, sick, pregnant or nursing pets, or on pets that have previously shown signs of sensitivity to pesticide products, EPA recommends that a veterinarian be consulted. Additional safety tips are available for taking care of fleas and ticks on your pet.

Pets may experience adverse reactions from flea and tick control products, including spot-on treatments, sprays, collars and shampoos. However, the majority of reports to EPA are related to flea and tick treatments with EPA-registered spot-on products. Spot-on products are generally sold in tubes or vials and are applied to one or more localized areas on the body of the pet, such as in between the shoulders or in a stripe along the back.

List of Registered Products

EPA has provided a listing of EPA-registered spot-on flea and tick products (10 pp, 63k, About PDF). Since the chart previously located on this page reflected only a portion of the numerous pet spot-on products available, EPA felt that pet owners and consumers might be led to believe that only those products listed were the focus of concern. In fact, EPA is intensifying its evaluation of all spot-on products and is providing a more comprehensive list of these products.

EPA is not initiating a product recall of these products nor is the Agency suggesting that the products not be used. EPA recognizes the importance of the products in effective flea and tick control. EPA’s objective at this stage is simply to advise consumers and pet owners to exercise caution when using the products and to monitor pet behavior following their use, as some animals have experienced adverse reactions following treatment.

Regulatory Agencies are Taking Action

EPA is evaluating all available data and information, including:

  • reports of adverse reactions,
  • product market share,
  • clarity of product use directions and label warnings,
  • product ingredients, and
  • pre-market safety data submitted to the Agency in support of registration of these products

This assessment may result in EPA action to require changes in the registration status of certain spot-on products. EPA will be working collaboratively with Health Canada to address this issue, as Canadian regulatory officials have identified similar concerns about the use of spot-on flea and tick products. EPA will be updating this page periodically to provide the public with the most current information on this issue.

Health Canada has identified similar concerns about the use of spot-on flea and tick products. EPA and Health Canada met with product manufacturers to begin discussions about this issue. Read about the May 5, 2009 EPA spot-on meeting with registrants (20 pp, 2.9 MB, About PDF).

For more information

For more information, please visit EPA's Pesticides Q&A database.

Increased Scrutiny of Flea and Tick Control Products for Pets | Pesticides | US EPA

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