Keep Fleas & Ticks Off Pets The Safe Way - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Keep Fleas & Ticks Off Pets The Safe Way

By Megan Moore
NewsChannel 10

AMARILLO, TEXAS -  Simply squeezing droplets onto your pet's shoulders could be a major health hazard.

"It was scary."

Within minutes of applying the OTC medicine on her cat Remy, Teresa Gaus says something was terribly wrong.

She says, "I don't know if he licked it but he started foaming at the mouth."

Remy got better once he had a bath, but he was not 100 percent back to normal for a while.

Gaus says, "the rash stayed a week to ten days."

Local emergency clinic veterinarian Pat Chase says many of the emergencies in her clinic deal with OTC medications.

Dr. Chase says, "the problem with otc medications is there's usually not anyone in that aisle to give you any support and help and recommendations."

One of the main reasons pets get sick from these is because owners do not know how much their pet weighs. Make sure you know before you administer the medication.

Another problem?  Owners using the dog medication for cats.

Dr. Chase says, "if you take a dog product and put it on a cat, you're gonna have problems."

Problems as serious as neurological damage, seizures, skin rashes, and even death.

The federal government is working on restrictions on the medications because of these incidents.  Among the recommendations are more clearly labeled instructions, getting rid of some toxic chemicals, and more public awareness.

Dr. Chase says your best bet to keep your pet safe is get the meds from your vet because "they know your animal, they know the size of it. They're gonna give you the proper size."

As for Remy, Teresa is not taking any chances.

Neither of her cats get flea and tick medicine anymore.

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