Do Flea And Tick Treatments Kill?

We all want to do the best for our pets, and part of that is providing our pets with effective flea and tick prevention.

There has been a lot of discussion on social media networks, including some very large and active Facebook groups that say that certain brands of flea and tick treatments kill.

Who are we to believe when faced with these anecdotes of animals dying or becoming ill?

Dr Leigh discusses what you need to consider when you are trying to decide whether flea and tick treatments kill.

Watch the video, or read the transcript.

We would love to hear your thoughts and experiences in the comment section below.

Video Transcription

Hey everyone, Dr. Leigh here from Your Vet Online and I just wanted to have a very quick talk to you all about some of the scare posts that I’ve been seeing on Facebook regarding flea and tick treatments.

Yes, it is possible that some of these cases are very, very sad, and animals have died or maybe they’ve had a problem after receiving these products, however, I just wanted to point out a few things that we need to consider when trying to work out whether it was a product that caused the issue, or whether it might have been just something else – a coincidence.

Let’s get right to it let’s just clarify a few things.

All Drugs Can Cause An Adverse Reaction

Number one, all drugs can cause an adverse reaction.

Now some drugs are actually contraindicated in certain situations so it might be that your animal, or you personally because this applies to humans too, might have kidney disease or you might have liver problems or you might actually be allergic to penicillin.

How many times would you have actually wanted penicillin (or augmentin if you’re more familiar with that term) to be removed from society because some people have an allergic reaction to it?

This is a type of thing that we’re up against.

All drugs to basically be registered in this country require really rigorous testing and the APVMA handles all of that.

I have put a link up the top that actually if you have a problem and you want to report a drug reaction you can.

Use that link and that will take you through to their website and you can go and report any reactions.

That is a far better way of doing it than just complaining on Facebook.

Use this link to report an Adverse Drug Reaction in Australia.

 What’s The Difference Between Correlation Vs Causation?

The other thing I really want to point out and try and help you understand is the difference between correlation and causation.

This is a biggie and it’s something that so many people tend to get wrong.

I’m going to give you an example:

Imagine that you’re flying from Sydney to Brisbane, you’re on that plane and you receive some food. You might have lunch. You get off the plane at the other end and you have profuse vomiting and diarrhea.
Now you’ve obviously got food poisoning.

Do you turn around and say that flying gives you food poisoning?
Of course you don’t.

Flying is correlated but it doesn’t cause food poisoning.

The same goes for a lot of the drug issues that we see.

Imagine how often your dog or your cat may have a problem or your horse, and we don’t actually know that it’s present.

It could be then that you’ve given them a feed of fatty bacon and the next thing, and you’ve given it a medication for fleas and ticks and the next thing you know, your dog is in the hospital with pancreatitis.

Now is that because you gave it the feed of bacon or is that because you gave it the medication?

That is the type of issue we’re seeing here.

I am definitely not saying that drugs do not cause problems, of course there are some drugs that can cause issues for certain animals, just like some drugs can cause issues for certain people, but we need to be smart about it.

Get Expert Advice From A Vet

Now the best thing that you can do is talk to a vet because we can go over the history of your pets and be able to tell you if we think a particular medication is not good and safe for your pet.

It might be that your pet has issues with its kidneys so you have been warned that you should not give your pet non-steroidal anti-inflammatories unless your vet says you can.

This is the issue.

Sometimes when we find that it’s very easy to buy these products from pet stores off the internet but we do it without any background knowledge we’re not getting our veterinarian’s advice.

I’m not saying that we’re causing these problems ourselves, but sometimes a lot of these issues can be solved if you have this particular discussion with a veterinarian.

Drug Reactions Happen

It’s also really important that you realise that sometimes adverse reactions happen regardless.

Just like the penicillin example, people get given penicillin, they then have a bad reaction.

Those doctors were not going trying to make you have a bad reaction, they were doing what they genuinely thought was the best thing for you at the time.

The same goes for veterinarians. We do not like to see pain and suffering so guys bottom line talk to a vet about what medications are best for your particular pet.

Report Adverse Drug Reactions

If you have problems go to the APVMA website and report the issue. That’s really, really important.

Don’t just leave it up to your vet, you need to report these things and remember scaremongering does no one any good.

Do Flea And Tick Treatments Kill?

Flea and tick medications are safe for the vast majority of animals otherwise they would not be registered in our country.

Alright guys, that’s my little rant for the day I hope you have a good one, catch you later, bye.

Has your pet or horse ever had a bad reaction to a drug? We’d love you to tell us about it in the comments section below.

Flea and tick treatments kill protect your pets