The EPA says complaints of dogs and cats injured and sometimes even killed by flea treatments have increased significantly. The EPA has outlined plans to make the products safer. The agency will develop stricter testing and evaluation requirements for flea and tick treatments that are applied to pets’ skin. The EPA also will begin reviewing labels to determine which ones need to say more clearly how to use the products. These efforts follow increasing complaints from pet owners that the “spot-on” products have triggered reactions in dogs and cats, ranging from skin irritation to neurological problems to deaths.
The EPA has received 44,263 reports of harmful reactions associated with topical flea and tick products in 2008, up from 28,895 in 2007. Reactions ranged from skin irritations to vomiting to seizures to, in about 600 cases, death of an animal. The new restrictions will be placed on all flea and tick products, with additional changes for specific products placed as needed. Possible changes in formulas are also possible. Pet owners must carefully read and follow all labeling before exposing their pet to a pesticide, according to the EPA.
Source: Associated Press
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