Pet sickness, death linked to flea and tick collar, investigation finds

National News

SHAWNEE, Kan. (WDAF) — Could the flea and tick collar you put on your pet be hurting them? The results of a new investigation suggest the answer may be yes.

Whether it’s man’s best friend or a furry feline, pets are a part of the family. When you put a flea and tick collar on them, you expect it to be safe. But an investigation published Wednesday by the Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting along with USA Today discovered a troubling trend.

After looking over thousands of federal documents from the Environmental Protection Agency, investigators learned there have been more than 75,000 complaints about the Seresto brand flea and tick collar over the past nine years. They found that nearly 1,700 dogs and cats wearing the collar have died.

Elanco Animal Health pharmaceutical company recently bought Bayer Animal Health, which created the collar with the brand name Seresto. Elanco now sells it. It uses two types of pesticides to kill fleas and ticks, releasing small amounts of chemicals onto your pet over time. Investigators found evidence the collar might be killing dogs and cats.

Elanco did not have an immediate statement in response to the investigation.

The EPA, which regulates products with pesticides, responded by saying it believes the collar is still safe enough, noting that some warnings exist on the product’s packaging. Despite the complaints, the product will stay on the market.

An EPA spokesperson said some pets just may be more sensitive to this particular pesticide combination than others.

The EPA has never warned the public about this Seresto product, and there is no evidence to think the agency will anytime soon.

Not only are pets having problems with the Seresto flea and tick collar. Humans might be, too. More than 1,000 people have reported health problems from it, mostly rashes.

Almost all flea and tick collars contain pesticides, so if your dog or cat is having health problems, consult your vet before using chemicals in tandem.

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