What’s In Most Flea & Tick Products?
Most pet owners use flea and tick products to keep their dog safe, not knowing the dangers behind the label. Many ingredients used in conventional flea and tick products are actually harmful to mammals and our environment. These toxic ingredients are generously applied to your dog’s skin, and makes contact with your home, furniture, and family.
No Safety Test
Many consumers assume that pet products go through rigorous testing for safety and efficacy. After all, why would anyone market a product that wasn’t safe? The EPA did not begin reviewing pet product safety until 1996. The EPA states that “We cannot make our own assessment because unlike the regulations directing the FDA’s approval of human products, the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act does not require pet products to undergo field trials prior to approval.” There are no safety laws for pet grooming and care products, and companies can put just about anything they want in your dog’s flea and tick treatment! It’s important to review all ingredients in your pet care products before purchase.
4 Toxic Chemicals In Flea & Tick Products:
Check the label in your pet products for these toxic ingredients:
Pyrethroids – synthetic insecticide that causes lung cancer and liver tumors in laboratory animals. Bio Spot Flea and Tick Control, Defend EXspot Treatment and Zodiac FleaTrol Spot On contain either or both of the active ingredients Permethrin and/or Pyriproxyfen.
Fipronil – Dr. Dobozy of the EPA’s Pesticide Division has found that fipronil (the active ingredient in ‘Frontine’) remains in your pet’s blood stream, alters hormone levels, and is toxic to the kidney and liver.
Tetrachlorvinphos – (TCVP) is used in flea and tick collars, powders, and sprays. This chemical is classified by the EPA as “likely to be carcinogenic to humans.”
Imidacloprid – an active ingredient in ‘Advantage’. Imidacoprid has been found to increase cholesterol levels in dogs and cause thyroid lesions, liver, heart, brain, and lung toxicity. This chemical also causes incoordination, difficulty breathing and muscle weakness.
How to combat Fleas and Ticks naturally, safely and effectively
Choosing The Best Flea & Tick Products
Finding the right flea and tick treatment is an important part of your dog’s health and wellness. Most conventional flea and tick treatments will contain one of the four ingredients toxic to dogs.
Even commonly known flea and tick treatments like Advantage, Frontline, and Sentry are not 100% effective in preventing fleas and ticks from jumping on or biting your dog. The purpose of the chemicals is to poison the parasite when it bites or comes in contact with your dog’s oil glands. These poisons are not only on your dog, but anywhere he eats, sleeps, and hangs out.
Choose flea and tick products that are made with organic ingredients free of synthetic chemicals and pesticides. Natural doesn’t mean ‘organic’. Products that are labeled organic must meet USDA testing for safety and quality. In the U.S. pet industry, companies with non organic products are not required to test their ingredients for safety.
Natural Flea & Tick Prevention Tips
- Trim your lawn and keep outdoor areas clean — fleas and ticks like to hide in tall grass and bushes.
- Wash your pet’s bed and blankets (and yours too) in hot water weekly during flea and tick season.
- Brush your dog daily and check for fleas and ticks with a fine toothed comb.
- Vacuum often to remove flea eggs, and replace the vacuum bag regularly.
- Look for natural products that contain essential oils of: lemongrass, cedarwood, peppermint, lavender, rosemary, sage or eucalyptus.
- Bathe your dog regularly during flea and tick season.
- Use an organic flea and tick treatment or spray when going outdoors.
- Spray your yard monthly with a natural (deet & pesticide free) lawn spray.
Humane Society – http://www.humanesociety.org/animals/resources/tips/flea_tick_OTC_pet_products.html
Natural Resources Defense Council – http://www.nrdc.org/health/effects/npets.asp
Dogs Naturally Magazine – http://www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com/the-dangers-of-flea-and-tick-products/
Healthy Pets Marcola – http://healthypets.mercola.com/sites/healthypets/archive/2010/03/31/dangers-of-flea-and-tick-problems.aspx