Hundreds of cats are thought to have been killed or put down due to unintentional misuse of flea treatments. Simply by using a flea treatment for dogs on felines – pet owners are accidentally killing their cats, unaware of the fact that products for dogs contain permethrin, an insecticide that can be fatal to cats. Felines can even die from coming into contact with a dog treated with the chemicals contained in spot-on flea treatments, which are applied to the skin on the animal’s neck.
Chief executive of the International Cat Care charity, Claire Bessant, says that ‘these deaths are totally preventable. Pet owners mix up cat and dog products or are simply unaware that you can’t use a dog treatment on a cat.’
Pet charities advise that owners take extra care when using flea products, making sure that flea treatments designed for dogs are not used on or near cats.