We all want to keep our furbabies safe and healthy. Dogster Kristy Sweetland, furmom to Seva and Finlay, will be providing weekly tips and warnings from the Pet Poison HELPLINE to make that job easier. As a veterinary technician with the Pet Poison HELPLINE she’s going to help us all stay more on top of what’s dangerous for our furry family members.
Pyrethroids (Part one!)
One of the most common classes of ingredients used in veterinary flea control products today are pyrethroids. Pyrethroids are a synthetic form of pyrethrins, which are natural derivatives of the Chrysanthemum flower. To dogs, these chemicals are not highly toxic. To cats, however, highly concentrated products can be extremely toxic. The reason for this is that unlike most other mammals, they lack the enzyme needed to break this chemical down within their liver. Tiny quantities of concentrated products can result in severe tremors, high body temperature, and seizures. Without veterinary intervention to stop these signs death can occur. With early veterinary care, we can expect a favorable outcome although you should expect your kitty to be hospitalized for approximately three days. Depending on your cats health, it may up to 72 96 hours for this toxicity to run its course.
For those households utilizing concentrated monthly drop-on flea products for their dogs, please be advised that if you have cats in the household you need to keep them separated from the dog for 24 hours after an application. If the wet product is ingested or absorbed through the cats skin, toxicity will be severe. Keep in mind that pyrethroids used in over the counter feline veterinary products generally contain less than 1% of the ingredient. In such a dilute concentration toxicity should not occur.
Stay tuned for Pyrethroids Part two next week when well discuss adverse effects sometimes seen with dogs.