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EPA to release results of flea, tick products for pets

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

The Environmental Protection Agency is releasing the results of a year-long look at flea and tick treatments you put on the back of your pet's neck.

The investigation was sparked by more than 40,000 reports of pets having bad reactions to the treatments including death.

For the better part of a year, the Environmental Protection Agency has been taking a look at over the counter Spot-On Flea and Tick products, after thousands of complaints that those products were making pets sick with everything from rashes to seizures.

Today we talked to pet owners at the Westpark Dog Park. Most pet owners we talked to say they try to keep their pets clean, bathing them on a regular basis, hoping to avoid fleas and ticks altogether. Sometimes it is unavoidable, so we asked them about their concerns with those products and the precautions they take to protect their pets.

"Especially for the stuff that goes on his skin, because then we are exposed to it because he is in all of our stuff. I am pretty careful," said pet owner Michelle Dannemiller.

"Typically using those products I go through my vet, asking what they recommend. I have had to use those products on one occasion, but again going through my vet was the best result I have found," said pet owner Kylee Short.

"We haven't had any bad luck with the ones we've bought over the counter," said pet owner Kent Sinex. "Although, we only buy what they claim to be the best in comparison and we don't overuse it. We use it like they say, once every 6 weeks. We follow the label."

One vet we spoke with said problems often arise when pet owners simply don't follow the label instructions for over-the counter flea and tick products, so we may see a call for a change in labeling, as part of the EPA's plan.

The EPA will release its findings in a webinar at 2pm. The public can listen in, and submit questions, just log onto the EPA's website.

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