Common supermarket dog flea product a danger to cats

Why reading the instructions carefully is important for your pet's health. It's just a fact of life, many of us are so busy these days we don't stop to read the fine print. The downside is we can put others at risk, including the family pet.

Recently Socrates, a three year old cat was rushed into Vetwest Whitfords after the owner found him twitching and unable to walk steadily. The night before they had applied a supermarket spot-on flea product, but had not read the 'for dogs only' instruction.

The spot-on contained permethrin, which is toxic to cats. Permethrin poisoning causes ataxia, tremors, tachycardia, salivation, dilated pupils and seizures, which can be fatal. In Socrates case, he also had a localised skin reaction (hair loss) where the agent was applied. Effects start between 1-12 hours after exposure and last up to 3 days. The only treatment is to treat the symptoms and supportive care.

 Socrates was lucky and after a 24 hour stay in hospital, was able to go home. Please, if you buy any products for your pet without professional advice, please read the instructions.

Pet type(s): 
Life stage(s): 

Share this page