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Flea and Tick Meds, Safe or Not?

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I just have a few questions about flea and tick meds...

Is it safe to buy any kind of flea and tick meds from a pet store? I won't buy it from WM butI saw a few kinds at the pet shop, Spot On, and whatever else they have. I didn't buy any from there because I wanted to ask TCS first. We bought Advantage from the vet instead.

Also if you have an indoor only cat do you need to treat your cat every month, or how about in the winter?
post #2 of 13
IMO if you don't have fleas in the house, the cat doesn't go out and you don't have a dog that might bring them in; then you don't need to be using ANY kind of flea medications.

Our lab is treated with BioSpot - she's never had fleas, never brought them in and the cats don't have them and are not treated.

I say, treat if there is a problem. Any flea medication is poison you know, so if its not needed, why use it?
post #3 of 13
As far as the brands go, the only type I'll use on a cat are Advantage, Revolution, or Frontline.

I would steer clear of any other product.
post #4 of 13
One thing I'm sure about is that over-the-counter flea medications often don't work and have been known to harm and even kill kittens.

Your safest medication is what you get from the vet.

Even though our cats are mostly indoor (hubby lets Bijou go out a bit which bothers me to no end), they are treated monthly with Revolution (Bijou) and Advantage (Mika) from May until end of October. We have fleas outside in our grass and can easily carry them in on our clothing even if the cats didn't go outside.

I had a horrible flea infestation some years ago and finally needed professional exterminators to come in before we could get rid of them so I never want to go through that again. They are dastardly hard to get rid of once you have them.

Revolution is a good product as it covers fleas, ticks (not sure about that one) and earmites as well as roundworm I believe (don't quote me on the roundworm).

I know some folks won't treat unless they actually see a problem, but I'm in the other camp that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. And, as I said, I've seen how much a bad infestation can cost in aggravation not to mention the money we spent trying to get rid of them.
post #5 of 13
True, but I've been lucky and never had to deal with them. I suppose that if it happened then I would change my mind about "preventative" - until then, I'm not putting anything on them
post #6 of 13
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45 View Post
True, but I've been lucky and never had to deal with them. I suppose that if it happened then I would change my mind about "preventative" - until then, I'm not putting anything on them
Yes, you have been lucky. Once fleas get established they are very, very difficult to get rid of. I'd rather deal with head lice - at least you can get rid of those in an evening. We had stuff from the vet which didn't even work on the fleas. The only thing that worked was getting in the pros and having the house completely fumigated. We had to move all the furniture from against the walls, take the cat to the vet overnight for defleaing and stay out of the house for a minimum of 8 hours after they sprayed.
post #7 of 13
Man, that IS a pain!
post #8 of 13
The only time we've ever treated the cats, was last year when the Frontline stopped working on the dogs. I don't know why it stopped working, but we treated monthly for a couple months with barely a dent in the fleas. It was insane. We tried Advantage instead the next month, and dead fleas were just dropping off of them within the day. The cats got the Advantage, too, since they'd picked them up. But we've never seen a flea on the cats any other time, even with four dogs going in and out. I've never found monthly treatments necessary for the dogs, even. They just get one when it starts to get warm out, and maybe a second if we see fleas later on.
post #9 of 13
Yes flea meds are safe for cats but do not get just any old kind. A lot of groomers refuse to give flea baths and such to cats because they have about a 25% chance on developing a reaction and becoming very ill. I myself have been a certified groomer for over 4 years now but haven't seen a reaction yet. Walmart does sell safe flea and tick topical treatments but make sure it is for cats ONLY. Dog treatments not only use different ingredients but usually stronger dosages and can be extremely fatal. Petsmart,Petco any pet supply store will carry them, if you would like a little bigger selection and to save a lot of money I recommend ordering them from its a wholesale online store for groomers but you can buy individual items for your own pet needs. If you need anymore help don't hesitate to ask me anything, I hope I might have helped you out, if not there's a lot of other groomers on here that would gladly help you with any further concerns, Good Luck!
post #10 of 13
Oh and Beandip, your cats are SOOOO adorable congrats on some beautiful babies!
post #11 of 13
Thread Starter 
We haven't had problems with fleas or ticks or any thing but we treated them when we got each cat, just in case they had fleas. We haven't treated them yet this year but we are moving to a house and I'm worried there could be fleas there already. I just want to make sure my kitties are safe. I'm still not sure if I will treat them every month or not....hmmm

But I don't have to treat them in the winter right?
post #12 of 13
Personally, when my dog would get them, I'd treat him, although sometimes I would just treat him coming into summer. But the occasion that I hadn't and he brought home fleas, I treated him for the entire summer/warm period, and the first month that we had them here, fleas in the house even, I treated the cats too... and then the fleas cleared up basically all by themself. I didn't have to bomb or treat the carpets or anything.

We used Frontline. However, that being said, I just saw something on the news about Frontline packaging being copied or manufactured and the product inside not actually being Frontline..,.that might have been what happened to the person who Frontline didn't work for. I've always had perfect success with Frontline.

Over the counter brands, Hartz in particular, of the back of the neck flea stuff... a.) does not work (found this out from experience)... and b.) Hartz in particular has been known to cause neurological problems/damage and I believe there was an entire slew of people that had animals affected by it. I hadn't read that myself, but my vet told me that and also the people at the PetSmart. I never had any luck with the flea collars, powders, flea baths (killed them first off but didn't repel them and then couldn't treat the animal again for at least a week)
post #13 of 13
I use Frontline on both Tal and Midnight and get them from the vet. I'm in the prevention camp.

I bet the person who the Frontline stopped working for got some of the counterfeit. Those folks can make it look like the real thing. That's why I go ahead and spend a little extra and get it from my vet.
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