Wednesday, March 17, 2010

EPA Mandates New Labels for Flea and Tick Control - AOL News

"EPA Mandates New Labels for Flea and Tick Control - AOL News by Katie Drummond

(March 17) -- With more pets dying from overdoses of pest-prevention products, the federal agency that oversees the pesticides is mandating tighter regulations on labeling and dosage recommendations.

The Environmental Protection Agency started looking into allegations of inadequate or confusing labels on flea and tick products last year. In 2008, the agency saw a 53 percent increase in reported pet deaths because of the sprays and creams.

But the products, like Enforcer Flea Drops and Frontline, aren't contaminated; owners are just overdoing it. They're unsure how much to give a dog versus a cat, or a larger animal versus a smaller one, said EPA administrator Steve Owens.

Most of the products are made with ingredients such as permethrin, which a study in Veterinary Journal linked to side effects like seizures, hair loss, vomiting and death among cats who were treated with excessive doses.

The EPA will review product labels and insist that manufacturers clarify dosage-by-weight instructions, and ensure that products for cats and dogs have entirely different names.

They'll also revamp preapproval testing for new products.

The regulations are a long time coming, but the EPA crackdown could have been worse. Last June, EPA spokesman Dale Kemery speculated in The New York Times that the agency investigation could result in "canceling a product." As of now, nothing's being recalled or pulled from store shelves.

But the EPA might not be doing enough. Last year, the Humane Society of the United States aligned itself with the Natural Resources Defense Council to demand that the EPA institute outright bans on pyrethroid-based products. According to the HSUS, more than half of the serious adverse reactions reported since 2005 were caused by products that contained the ingredient.

The EPA only started testing pet pesticides in 1996, which the HSUS considers serious grounds for concern on the part of pet owners.

"There is a substantial backlog of products waiting to be tested, so many pet products containing potentially harmful pesticides still make their way onto store shelves," an HSUS statement reads.

Even as pesticides lining store shelves undergo increased scrutiny, the EPA continues to struggle with phony versions that could be even more harmful. Since last year, the agency's been chasing crooks selling counterfeit pesticides, unbeknownst to pet owners."

The sad truth is ... the EPA has not gone far enough. SAFETY BEFORE PROFIT.
Protect your pets, if your don't, you are next.

Just my POV.


Snow said...

What do you use on your fluffs for fleas and ticks?

silvieon4 said...