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  1. #1
    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    Popular flea collar linked to 1,700 pet deaths

    Thought I'd share this, I know many of us are dog-lovers too.

    Also, if you use such products (collars or spot-on pesticides on your dogs & cats, remember to thoroughly wash your hands after you pet them, before handling your snakes. Snakes (& other reptiles) can absorb things thru their skin & these chemicals can be deadly for them. They may act slowly to poison them.

    My very first snake was a corn snake that came from a pet store, way back when it was common practice for them to take a piece of a flea collar (& some places even used the WHOLE collar!) & put it right in with their snakes to kill the mites they came with. Snakes could be seen actually sliding on the collar...

    My corn snake appeared to be a healthy young adult when I got her, but became sick from an unknown cause- refusing to eat, etc. Nothing I or the vet could do, she passed away in a few months, & in hindsight, I suspect it was her exposure to a flea collar in the pet store or before she got there from the source. The symptoms fit a pesticide exposure, anyway, but I'll never know for sure.
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Popular flea collar linked to 1,700 pet deaths

    Johnathan Hettinger USA TODAY Rhonda Bomwell had never used a flea and tick collar before. Pierre, her 9-year-old Papillon service dog, was mostly an indoor animal.
    Still, her veterinarian recommended she purchase one, so Bomwell went to the pet store near her home in Somerset, New Jersey, and selected Bayer’s Seresto collar.
    A day later, on June2, 2020, Pierre had a seizure, collapsing while Bomwell was making dinner. Lying on his back, the dog stopped breathing and his eyes rolled back.
    Bomwell tried giving him CPR. Then she called the police. An officer helped her lift the dog into her car, and she rushed him to the hospital. Pierre died before he could receive medical treatment. Bomwell didn’t think to take off Pierre’s collar.
    'I just didn’t put it together,' she said.
    Bomwell isn’t alone. Seresto, one of the most popular flea and tick collars in the country, has been linked to hundreds of pet deaths, tens of thousands of injured animals and hundreds of harmed humans, Environmental Protection Agency documents show.
    Yet the EPA has done nothing to inform the public of the risks.
    Seresto, developed by Bayer and now sold by Elanco, works by releasing small amounts of pesticide onto the animal for months at a time. The pesticide is supposed to kill fleas, ticks and other pests but be safe for cats and dogs.
    But thousands of pets are being harmed, according to federal documents obtained through a public records request from the Center for Biological Diversity, a nonprofit organization that watchdogs the EPA as part of its work to protect endangered species. The center provided the documents to the Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting.
    Since Seresto flea and tick collars were introduced in 2012, the EPA has received incident reports of at least 1,698 related pet deaths. Overall, through June 2020, the agency has received more than 75,000 incident reports related to the collars, including nearly 1,000 involving human harm.
    The EPA is in charge of regulating products that contain pesticides. The agency has known about these incidents for years but has not informed the public of the potential risks associated with this product, said Karen McCormack, a retired EPA employee who worked as both a scientist and communications officer.
    McCormack said the collars have the most incidents of any pesticide pet product she’s ever seen.
    'The EPA appears to be turning a blind eye to this problem, and after seven years of an increasing number of incidents, they are telling the public that they are continuing to monitor the situation,' she said. 'But I think this is a significant problem that needs to be addressed sooner rather than later.'
    The EPA declined to say how Seresto compares to other pet products. But in response to a question about whether the product is safe, an agency spokesperson said in an emailed statement that the two pesticides in Seresto have 'been found eligible for continued registration' based on best available science, including incident data.
    'No pesticide is completely without harm, but EPA ensures that there are measures on the product label that reduce risk,' the spokesperson said. 'The product label is the law, and applicators must follow label directions. Some pets, however, like some humans, are more sensitive than others and may experience adverse symptoms after treatment.'


    Amazon, where Seresto is the top-selling collar, also has received numerous complaints about the product from customers who detailed significant issues. Dozens of people over the years have claimed the collar caused skin rashes in their pet. Others said it led to neurological issues in their pets.
    Despite the many warnings, Amazon has not removed the product from its online marketplace. Amazon did not respond to multiple requests for comment for this story.
    This isn’t the first time that the EPA has failed to properly regulate flea and tick collars containing pesticides, said Miriam Rotkin-Ellman, a senior scientist at the Natural Resources Defense Council.
    The NRDC filed a petition against the agency more than a decade ago over its approval of a different pesticide than the one used in Seresto that is linked to cancer and brain development issues in children.
    In April 2020, a federal appeals court called the EPA’s refusal to respond to NRDC’s requests 'nothing short of egregious' and told agency officials to make a decision on whether to ban the pesticide within 90 days. The EPA decided not to ban the pesticide, called tetrachlorvinphos. That collar continues to be sold under the brand name Hartz Ultraguard, Hartz InControl and Longlife.
    NRDC has challenged that decision; that lawsuit is currently pending.
    Even so, the number of incidents linked to that pesticide pales in comparison to those linked to Seresto. From 1992 to 2008, the EPA received about 4,600 incident reports regarding pet collars containing tetrachlorvinphos, including 363 deaths, according to EPA documents.
    Broken down per year, that’s 30 times fewer incidents and 10 times fewer deaths than Seresto.
    And those are most likely an undercount, said Nathan Donley, a senior scientist at the Center for Biological Diversity and an expert on U.S. pesticide regulation. Donley said the number of reported incidents for Seresto is 'just the tip of the iceberg.'
    In order to report an incident, a person has to make the connection between the collar and the issue with the dog, understand who to contact and how to report it, he said.
    'Most of the time, people are not going to make the connection or they’re not going to take an hour or so out of the day and figure out how to call and spend time on hold,' Donley said.
    He said the incident data creates lots of questions about EPA processes.
    Since Seresto flea and tick collars were introduced in 2012, the EPA has received incident reports of at least 1,698 related pet deaths. Chewy


    Last edited by Bogertophis; 03-03-2021 at 10:58 PM.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

  2. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Bogertophis For This Useful Post:

    dakski (03-04-2021),GoingPostal (03-04-2021),nikkubus (03-03-2021)

  3. #2
    BPnet Senior Member dakski's Avatar
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    Re: Popular flea collar linked to 1,700 pet deaths

    Thanks Bogertophis!

    I sent this article to Katie yesterday and found it in the news. I didn't even think to post here .

    Of course, Katie confirmed that all 4 of our dogs have this collar! I handle oral meds (like heart worm prevention, etc.) and she does the collars.

    Calling the vet tomorrow to get a replacement. I tried today but there line was busy every time I called. They are busy, but I imagine I am not the only one who saw the article.

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    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    You're most welcome! It's just really sad that people weren't even warned about this. It's not a product that I've ever used on my dogs, but no matter what you

    use, I think they all have some degree of risk, as far as some breeds being more sensitive, or just having awful "luck". (My dogs are on an oral medication-

    Nexgard- partly because I hate worrying about touching the topical stuff too, & because it just works better.) I suppose it's just like meds for humans, some

    people can't take certain things, but this (Seresto) seems to have more than it's share of negative baggage.
    Last edited by Bogertophis; 03-04-2021 at 01:42 AM.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

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    BPnet Senior Member dakski's Avatar
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    Re: Popular flea collar linked to 1,700 pet deaths

    Yeah, I used to give Bravecto? to my dogs for flea and tick prevention, but the collar seemed easier. May go back.

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    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    Amazon to review popular flea collar

    Many pets killed, hurt by pesticide, say reports
    Jonathan Hettinger
    Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting
    Amazon, the world’s largest online retailer, said this week it will consider whether to continue selling Seresto flea-and-tick collars after media reports that they have been linked to more than 75,000 pet injuries and almost 1,700 pet deaths.
    The announcement came after the Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting and USA TODAY exposed the large number of complaints the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency received about the collars, which use pesticides to kill ticks and fleas.
    Amazon, where the Seresto collar is the top-selling flea-and-tick collar, said the company is “looking into the product in question,” spokeswoman Mary Kate McCarthy said.
    “Safety is a top priority for Amazon,” she said. “We actively monitor our store for product safety concerns including customer feedback and product reviews and have proactive measures in place to prevent unsafe or non-compliant products from being listed. When appropriate, we remove products and reach out to suppliers, manufacturers and government agencies for additional information.”
    The producer of the collars, Elanco Animal Health, said its product rarely hurts animals, citing internal data. Keri McGrath, a company spokeswoman, said the company “takes the safety of our products very seriously and thoroughly investigates potential concerns related to their use.”
    Although the majority of reviews on Amazon about the collar are positive, dozens of comments raised concerns about pets being harmed. Pet owners have also posted about incidents involving the collars on social media and other sites related to pet ownership.
    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which regulates the product


    because it contains pesticides, issued a new statement on Thursday morning in response to the story.
    EPA “takes reports of incidents like these very seriously,” the new statement said, and it encourages pet owners to contact their veterinarians and the National Pesticide Information Center, which is trained in responding to these incidents.
    “EPA understands that pets are part of the family in many American households and the agency is committed to following the science and the law as we work to address this issue and pursue our mission,” an agency spokesman said in an email.
    Seresto, developed by Bayer and now sold by Elanco, works by releasing small amounts of pesticides onto the animal for months at a time. The pesticides in the collar are supposed to kill fleas, ticks and other pests but be safe for cats and dogs.
    The collars have been linked to at least 1,698 pet deaths, 75,000 incidents of pet harm and hundreds of humans being harmed, according to EPA documents. The incidents span eight years – between 2012 when the product hit the market and June of 2020.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

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