Frontline Plus for Cats may be safer for your cat than some other flea and tick control products according to the National Resources Defense Council.
Why is Frontline Plus Considered a Safer Product?
The National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) a leading non-profit environmental action group in the US assigns a safety rating to flea and tick products for cats and dogs. The products deemed safest by the NRDC are assigned a one crossed out paw rating.
Frontline Plus has two crossed out paw rating meaning that while it is not the safest product of all, it is not the most dangerous either, when used appropriately. Responsible owners take note: the operative words are “when used appropriately”. Most cat owners know that many flea and tick control products made for dogs are in fact lethal to cats.
Four Reasons Cats more Vulnerable to Toxins in Flea Formulas?
- Spot on, or topical flea and tick controls for cats work by translocation. The formulation is usually applied at the base of the neck where it is absorbed into the hair follicle. Since many cats groom themselves assiduously, they may ingest the pesticides more quickly than their canine counterparts.
- Cats may lack certain enzymes for metabolizing harmful chemicals.
- Cats also tend to eat any fleas or ticks they find while grooming themselves. If the insects are already affected by the pesticides in the flea/tick product used, a cat may be getting a double dose. The NRDC website contains an excellent reference entitled Green Paws Product Guide.
- A cat may have a pre-existing health condition or extreme sensitivity making the animal more vulnerable to pesticides.
Three Reasons Frontline Plus May Be Safer for Cats
- Frontline Plus does not contain a particularly deadly class of pesticides called organophosphate pesticides (OP’s).
- Frontline Plus contains fipronil a less toxic pesticide that kills adult fleas.
- Frontline Plus also contains S-methoprene that works to prevent flea and tick larvae from developing.
Many flea and tick control products containing OP’s are no longer available for sale. However cat owners may still have supplies from previous years. One organophosphate still available in pet products is tetrachlorvinphos. Another group of pesticides of concern are called carbaryl and propoxur. Careful owners would be well advised to check the labels of any flea and tick controls they have on hand and dispose of any that do not meet current standards. Also, it may be wise to consult a veterinarian. Frontline Plus or similar products purchased through a vet may well cost more. For most pet owners, the peace of mind knowing they are using the safest available product is worth the price.
For house cats who do not venture outside, the safest flea and tick protection may well be simple household hygiene combined with regular grooming.