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Hidden Dangers In Zodiac Spot On Flea Control

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How many times have you purchased a product, let's say a cleanser or a bug spray, and in big bold colours they display the various warning signs. Toxic, flammable, carcinogenic or whatever are in large enough type so there is no way that you're going to be able to miss it.

Or how about when you get a prescription you've never had before. The pharmacist, if he or she is any good, ensures that you know all possible contradictions and their symptoms. In fact most of them even provide a print out with which once you read you wonder if the stuff is going to kill you before it cures you, but at least you know what could go wrong.

Then of course there is now the grocery store where more and more packaging are carrying not only a products' nutritional value, but lists it's potential for allergies as well as any foods it might have come into contact with that could cause an allergic reaction. In fact everywhere you go you can see health warnings on the outside chance that something could harm you.

Whether it's because companies are terrified of being sued, new government regulations, or simple decency it doesn't matter. These warnings are now accepted as course and you expect to see them. The days of having to make use of magnifying products or having to pore over acres of small print in order to find out what exactly it is you're using or eating are long gone.

At least I thought they were, or maybe what applies to humans doesn't apply to pet products. That's always possible seeing as what's been going on with cat and dog food recently and other feeds in the past that have been discovered to be deadly. Heck mad cow disease was first started by adding sheep brains to cow feed, because the illness actually forms in sheep not cows.

Every spring I usually treat my cats with Revolution Blue, a medication I buy from my vets that gets rid of fleas, ear mites and other insects that bother them. They are indoor cats so that's all they usually need. Revolution is a great product that's easy to use, as you just squeeze a small tube's contents into the space between your pet's shoulder blades and it takes care of the rest. I think the natural oils in the cat's hair carries it around the body.
Zodiac Product.jpg
With our vet moving beyond comfortable walking distance I haven't been able to get out to pick up the medication for my cats in a couple of years but they'd been fine anyway so it hadn't seemed to matter. This year thought they started to display symptoms that they might be picking up mites or fleas; they can come in on my wife or I, if we have been around an animal that has them, easily enough.

So I went to a reputable pet store and bought Zodiac Spot On Flea Control for Cats and Kittens which promises to kill flea eggs in the animal's fur. You apply it just like the Revolution. So we did this on Saturday to all four of our cats.
By Sunday one of them was sporting a bald spot between his shoulder blades. Although we had noticed that it had aggravated them when we had put the medication on their shoulders for a little while after, we didn't make any connection between what was happening with him and the Spot On until we noticed his skin where the hair had fallen out looked like it had been burned it was so bright red and weepy.
Pip closeup May 15th.jpg
His hair had fallen out in little clumps in that area, I found it lying in a cluster on the carpet. It wasn't like it had shed or anything because it wasn't loose hairs, you could see it formed into clumps with the roots and everything. He's a shorthaired cat so we've been able to monitor him closely now and it doesn't look like the damage is spreading any further.

But yesterday I was walking through the hall and found a pile of hair from another one of our cats. His hair is thicker with more layers so we hadn't known anything was wrong until it all just fell out in a clump. It was like he had rolled over onto his back like cats do and had left his hair behind him when he got up.

Even before that had happened we had begun to suspect the Spot On might have had something to do with it. I looked over the packaging and saw something that said what to do in the event of a problem with humans. But didn't see anything else on a scan. The type is very small and it had been hard enough trying to read the instructions for applying the material. I had had my glasses on that were what I used for reading normal sized type face and even smaller, but the type was not much bigger than this.

My wife went over the back of the packaging with a magnifying glass and finally found first aid instructions for cats. While the first aid instructions for humans had its own subject heading and started a paragraph – for the animals it began mid way through the paragraph on human first aid.

It was the only place that they actually used the word pesticide in the packaging. "Sensitivities may occur after using any pesticide for pets" They go on to say if sensitivity occurs wash your pet with mild soap and water, and rinse with large amounts of water. If it continues seek medical attention – taking the packaging and P.C.P. number with you.

Of our four cats only the two boys showed any signs of "sensitivity". Have you ever even thought about washing a cat, let alone a cat that's not in the best of moods? Neither of our boys are small either; the black one weighs in at around 25lbs and the grey one is about fifteen but is affectionately known by the vets as "live wire" for the difficulty involved with taking his temperature (I've worn him as a hat with a thermometer hanging out of his butt when he was a kitten)

Nowhere on the packaging is there any warning that this stuff may have an adverse effect on the animal except in this first aid treatment area hidden away in small print. By then it's too late to decide that you don't want to risk your animal's health by rubbing something potentially dangerous into his or her skin. The last thing you want when you think you've done something good for your pet is to see its hair start falling out in clumps

A warning is something you put on packaging that a person can see so that they can make a considered decision. It's not something you bury in small print under first aide treatment. Especially when earlier on they tell you to make sure not to let the pet take the medication internally, or to keep it away from their eyes and genitalia. You'll think that the first aid treatment is for that eventuality– not in the event of something happening they haven't warned you about.

They don't even tell you what form the sensitivity could take. When do we need to seek help from a veterinarian? When all their hair falls out, when a little clump of hair falls out, when their skin turns pink, or when their hair takes on the texture of someone who’s done one too many home permanents and burnt their hair so that it feels like straw?

Wellmark International, formally known as Zoecon is the manufacturer of this and other insecticides that are used for everything from mosquito larvae control to the fleas on your pet. In a world where we are gradually starting to ban pesticides for their known toxicity and dangers to the planet, don't you think that a company that provides products to consumers that contains those toxins should be forced to warn them properly?

What would it cost them to print in legible lettering on the front of the package something to the effect of: Some animals have more sensitive skin than others – your cat may not be right for this product. Is that too hard? Think of all good will that would generate, and all the ill feelings it would prevent.

I bought Zodiac Spot On as an attempt to provide my cats some relief from a problem and have ended up causing them to develop problems. There is something wrong with that equation. That needs to change.

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About Richard Marcus

Richard Marcus is the author of two books commissioned by Ulysses Press, "What Will Happen In Eragon IV?" (2009) and "The Unofficial Heroes Of Olympus Companion". Aside from Blogcritics his work has appeared around the world in publications like the German edition of Rolling Stone Magazine and the multilingual web site Qantara.de. He has been writing for Blogcritics.org since 2005 and has published around 1900 articles at the site.
  • Cindy

    I used this product too, much to my dismay and my 8 month old Rottweiler developed the same thing, oozing red sores and massive hair loss in the area I applied the spot on lotion. I have been in contact with the company regarding this and all they keep saying is contact the ASPCA and their vets, blah, blah, blah. I am so upset with myself that I purchased this poison instead of my regular vet prescribed Sentinel. It has been 4 weeks since I used it on her and her fur is not growing back and still looks “burned”. I am absolutely heartbroken that I put my puppy through this. I feel like an idiot.

  • Krystal

    I bought Zodiac carpet powder and tick and flea spray. Within minutes my 22 week old kitten was crying, falling down and couldn’t walk. She went limp. Took her to the 24 hour vet and it was the pyrethrins. My vet gave her a dawn bath, fluids and medicine for tremors. She didn’t eat and was lethargic for days.. THIS PRODUCT SHOULDN’T BE USED ON CATS OR KITTENS. It is terrifying. I wouldn’t even chance it!!

  • Amanda Lefor

    Are there any bad effects for the Shmpoo? I used it on my cat and after reading these things I am freaking out. Nothing bad has happened yet and I hope nothing will but until then I am scared

  • Rae Jean Baker

    THIS PRODUCT IS HARMFUL TO CATS!!!! I applied this product to my 2 cats and my dog. The dog fine. My cats however are suffering awful side effects, the most major effect is LETHARGY! ! They lay limp. I washed them with soap and water. 24 hrs later still lethargic. Paw ticking has stopped. I cannot imagine using this on kittens! My cats are full grown!! It killed the fleas on the cats but I will choose alternative treatment before subjecting them to this stuff again. They are pitiful and heartbreaking.

  • Melinda Clara

    On Friday, May 1st I applied Zodiac Spot-On to the back of my 2 year old cat’s neck as instructed. That day he became very vocal/whining. Didnt want to sleep in his bedroom(technically it’s mine). As the weekend went on, he got confused, lethargic, and lost fur on the area it was applied to. Saturday I noticed he was sleeping next to his litter box all night, then Sunday I came home from church to find him sleeping in the kitty litter. I knew then he was going to the vet the next day. He had his appetite and drank water so I wasnt too worried on that aspect. When I took him to the vet, I told them I applied that stuff, and right away the doctor said it was the zodiac. Just to be on the safe side, I asked for a blood work and a full body exam and everything came back normal, except hes anemic from the fleas biting him. They gave him a dawn dish soap bath which helped kill the fleas, and gave me Advantage to applied to him. As of today I applied Advantage and he is being perfectly fine, and snoring on me. He has his personality back which I am happy about. Now it’s time to really kill some fleas. Good luck to all who are going through this! It was a scary weekend for me and my cat!

    • Rae Jean Baker

      THIS PRODUCT IS HARMFUL TO CATS!!!! I applied this product to my 2 cats and my dog. The dog fine. My cats however are suffering awful side effects, the most major effect is LETHARGY! ! They lay limp. I washed them with soap and water. 24 hrs later still lethargic. Paw ticking has stopped. I cannot imagine using this on kittens! My cats are full grown!! It killed the fleas on the cats but I will choose alternative treatment before subjecting them to this stuff again. They are pitiful and heartbreaking. Advantage is great! !

  • FinnBennMom

    Does anyone know of any natural remedy to use as a flea control for dogs? We used Zodiac Powerspot on our 5 yr old bichon cross, 48 hrs ago. Since then, he has been jumping around worse than the fleas we were trying to rid him of. Constant scratching, in spots, he has scratched so hard he has caused open sores. He is constantly whining and pleading for a remedy. We have done all the allergy reaction suggestions; Benedryl, Aloe Vera Gel, washing him off, moisturizing his skin… nothing seems to be helping. This is the third time we have had a dog react to “recommended treatment”. We just about lost our Coton De Tulear due to a reaction to rabies vaccine, and three years later he had a bad response to Inceptor. After the two reactions we have been very hesitant to use any drugs or pesticides on our pets, but we had a flea infestation last year and felt we would prevent it this year. We really need a natural remedy to prevent a flea infestation on our dogs and in our home.

    • Melinda Clara

      My cat did the same thing! Whining and pleading to leave a bedroom he is otherwise used to sleeping in at night. I used Zodiac on my cat May 1st. He’s doing much better a week later. The vet did a Dawn Dish Soap bath on him and that worked, plus I just applied Advantage to the back of his neck today. So with any hope, that should work

  • Iliana

    About 6 months ago we discovered that our dog groomer would apply Zodiac at the same time she did their nails for about a 1/3 of the price of Frontline. A month or 2 later we noticed that 2 (the girls) of the 3 dogs have red, raw paws, one had oozing eyes, and the other was constantly shaking her head and scratching her ears. A vet visit confirmed infected paws, eye & ear infections and both were given steroid shots and drops. The symptoms cleared up for about 3 weeks, then came back again and this time worse. This time both girls required antibiotics and steroids. Vet again said- allergy- most likely to pollen or grass. The infection cleared up and again came back, even worse, now both dogs were dehydrated and lethargic, both required IV’s. Fast forward a few weeks, we went on a last minute vacation to the mountains and in doing so put off the groomer visit until we returned. While gone we noticed that both dogs were getting better. The day after we returned we took the dogs for their grooming (and Zodiac) and the next day, all the symptoms were back. We were not putting 2 and 2 together thinking we’re back- to the pollen and grass and so are the allergens. NOW I am wondering if the cause is actually the Zodiac. We’ve had the dogs for 4 years and never had an allergy problem before, we have always used the same dog food (and same back yard grass), the only difference is the Zodiac. So while I am not definitely saying its the Zodiac, we are going back to Frontline, and we’ll see if it clears up. Thanks for the info, at least we have a place to start.

  • Susan Alford

    I used zodiac spot on on my 8 year old cat and noticed a scab on her back where i applied she was also not eating for awhile and drinking water constantly, her body temperture seemed really low a couple of times and one night she was so cold and i nudged her as she sleeps with me and she didnt move i thought i had list her. Its been almost a month now and she seems to be eating better but still drinking a lot but she does seem to be feeling a bit better. We used the treatment as we had a stray hanging around and when we took the stray to the spca the vet tech there said this stuff is poison i would take your cat to the vet this was just today so im taking her to the vets tomorrow to make sure she has no damage done elsewhere. To the people who say they dont feel bad for people that have had issues i say your heartless and cold animals are dying over this shit it shouldnt be sold.

  • jen

    We have 2 dogs and put their third month and third application of Zodiak flea and tick drops on last week. The first two months it was applied neither had a reaction. This time within hours my Black Lab had tremors and couldn’t walk properly. We bathed him 3 times with dawn dish soap to remove it. It has taken over a week for him to eat, drink and go to the bathroom properly and he is now losing his hair from the poison. The next day after the third application on our Beagle/Lab/Boxer mix, she started screaming and running into the corners of the rooms. It appeared she was hallucinating and was lethargic as well as vomiting. Due to the neurological response already displayed by our Lab we washed the little one right away – twice with Dawn dish soap and she was INSTANTLY better. We were very surprised as they didn’t react the first two times, but it seems we either got a bad batch or possibly they didn’t need another dose yet (how could you know?) and perhaps were overdosed. We now must find an alternative as we will never put the drops or a poison collar on the pups again. So scary and we were so guilt ridden that we inflicted this unknowingly.

    • Kirsten

      I applied half a dose on my 2.5 yr old 5lb mini poodles last night. This morning she was acting strange biting at her bum and having “ticks”…I washed her in a warm Dawn bath for 20 mins and dried her. When she got down she was walking and her bum and tail twisted to the right…I took her straight to the vet and they didn’t see it happen and sent her home 4hrs later. It’s happen twice more at home tonight. This product is awful for small dogs! I’m beside myself with worry and hope that the damage is not permanent! Thank you for sharing your story. How long did your dog’s symptoms last?

  • Larry Fine

    Our 10 year old cat was killed buy Zodiac Spot-On. We applied to as directed and within 2 hours she had several seizures before we could get her to the emergency vet. By the next morning she had not stopped shaking and was in a coma. We had her put to sleep that morning, her brain and nervous system was destroyed.

    The mfg. answered their email and gave us a case number with instructions on how to “possibly” get reimbursement for the vet bills that topped $300+

    Please don’t use this product.

    • Larry Fine

      Larry Fine here. We sent all the vet paperwork to Zodiac and waited several months for reimbursement. After 4 months we get a canned letter saying it was not their fault and to pretty much go away. Oh but they did say in their letter that a refund check for the product was enclosed…of course there was no refund check in the envelope. Total and complete fail as a company.

  • Kathy

    We read the packaging and the warnings were similar to others out there. I used this on our Rag Doll after running out of Advantage.He had the same reaction as the others on this page. Hair fell out, looked like he had been burned. The area was raw and bloody. We washed him really well as soon as we noticed him acting strangely a day or so later. It took about a month to heal over and he now has a scar where it was applied. I can’t imagine how terrible that must have felt on his skin before we noticed his discomfort…OMG, Horrible, horrible stuff.

  • Bonne

    P.S. I would rather use garlic pills or brewers yeast fr
    om now on. If you look at active ingredients, it is 45%, whereas Frontline is something like 15%. And it smells horrible, what did I do to my doggie?

    • Charlotte L. Wilson

      I know this is old, but do NOT give your animal garlic (or onion). The selenium in such is TOXIC to dogs and cats.

  • Bonne

    All I can say is my dog is still having reactions from this horrible product. Been whining scratching for days. He’s restless, irritable and going to vet tomorrow. Gave him benedril and baby aspirin. What a nightmare!

    • animal welfare

      Omg baby aspirin or any human pain relievers are deadly to pets renal failure and liver damage

  • Nadine

    I have a very very sensitive dog! she shows allergic reactions to many medications (not only because she has the so called mdr1 defect) and food. And she is totally fine with the zodiac spot on – for almost 10 years! If ppl are not able to read the instructions firstly – sorry, nothing more to say.

  • Sarah Clarkson

    although i agree with some of the comments posted,i have noticed a thread-product was not purchased at a vet-all living creatures will have horror stories re pest control! when you use a chemical to get rid of pests,there is always a chance of side effeof my cats have had reactions!,i have heard over the years that zodiac does not work-fleas will always be around,and of course you dont want your pet to suffer-be aware vets are like doctors,in a way-prescription-ie expensive is supposed to be better! not totally true,just make your own decision-your pet will let you know..

  • Jenny

    Just bought and used it on my dog …..fur and blood everywhere….$170 vet bill to help. PLEASE DO NOT USE ZODIAC products.my photo are posted on facebook and we are going after them!

  • bowser

    O my gosh. Please do not buy Zodiac for your pets. I bought flea and tick control(Zodiac) for my dog. It hase been just over a week. He has got such a bad reaction, lost hair, irritated skin and chewing until blood is pouring out. Im trying everything and its so bad 🙁 im on disability and cant afford to help any more than the daily epsom salt and tea tree oil bath 4 hour walks and unfortunatly a cone. I cant even go to sleep because he can still reach his tail. It is so bad I may have to put him down..no lie. Im crying right now for my buddy. PLS DONT BUY THIS FOR YOUR PET. If you do try the tinyiest bit and see if they react. Any advice would be appreciated on how to help my friend.

    • childrencome1st

      Dawn dish soap baths n I used on my bby cockatiels so dawn is totally fine to use on dogs n birds n cats .if u also read comments this is first thing vets to a dawn soap bath .n follow up with animal oatmeal shampoo if any further baths are needed after sores gone .I’ve used polyisoprene triple antibiotic ointment on my dog pad on her paw from a dog bite she got it had half her pad gone by the attacker dog that hurt my baby
      Try to dress up any sores with a gauze pads and medical 3 mm
      Tape .

      • childrencome1st

        Also I’ve used zodiac shampoo n the spray formulas on my 3 dogs with no side affects. Maybe some animals are super sensitive to some products while others are fine to use the two zodiac products I mentioned above.I’ve never tried zodiac spot on so no comments on this formula.but cats you have to be super careful with what you feed and apply on them it could easily cost ur cats life so stick to sentinal or advantage from your vets please. Dogs are hit n miss so use your judgement as a pet parent and always read the labels on everything they eat or medical stuff or flea remedies .also I heard mix a tiny bit of tea tree oil in the pets normal petshampoos n it’s supposed to be safe but please research on poison control items not to use on pets .in closing safest bug remedies is dawn shampoo n after a week oatmeal pet shampoo n oatmeal conditioning safest shampoos to use on pets that are petshampoos.

  • cassy

    Well.. I just bught this stuff for my cats… I’m not going to use it now. U ppl scared the shit out of me. I love my baby’s way to much… i got 7 of them.. 3 got out. Now they all have fleas. I’m trying so hard to get rid of them… but this is not worth it… I’ll just keep them shaved for awhile.

    • Rae Jean Baker

      Advantage works awesome. You can get from vet

    • Charlotte L. Wilson

      Advantage Plus (this controls mites as well as fleas/larvae), and Revolution are the best brands to get. Just take not that neither do NOT help control ticks.

    • childrencome1st

      Dawn shampoo all if u can

  • satisfied consumer

    I have always been a lot leary of spot on products for cats because they are a poison . However I can say I have had great luck with the zodiac carpet and premise spray. I had a cat that was allergic to fleas. One bite and she was losing her hair on her entire body ,after spending large amounts of money at the vets on the products they recommended I bought the zodiac. I followed the directions and sprayed the whole house including the animal bedding. I also removed all pets and myself from the home for several hours, also as recommended. When I came back I opened all windows and aired out the house. The cat remained flea free for months in Texas and Florida. Something I thought was next to impossible. Was it some work, yes but worth it not to have to use a poison directly on my cat. I hate to see a company get a bad rap for one product when I had great results with a different product from that company. My advise weigh your options and find out from other people in your area what works for them. Do your research before you invest your money.

    • Charlotte L. Wilson

      I did use 2 doses of the Zodiac – no ill effects, but not nearly as good
      on flea control. I have 2 more doses, and weighing whether or not to
      use these up, and then switch to Frontline.

      I would also do the marathon vacuuming and spraying. Before the vacuuming, I’d crate up the cats, briefly, so I could get out a box of the 20-Mule Team Boraxo powder, and sprinkle all over the carpeting and bits on the cat trees. I’d work it into the carpet with a broom, as best I could, then put a small amount of Boraxo in the canister, before vacuuming (so the trapped fleas will dehydrate and expire, for safer disposal)

      It is VERY important to vacuum up every last speck of the powder, as – in rare cases – cats may find and lick the granules off the floor/carpet/ and can be given a toxic reaction (I want to say ‘salt toxicity’; usually just involving vomiting and some concern of dehydration, but sometimes serious enough to take the animal to a vet) Seriously, though, as long as you thoroughly vacuum everything up, it’s fine.

      We do this in conjunction with flea bathing and treating the cats (usually with Advantage). Before releasing though, I’ll spritz a flea control spray all over the carpets, cat trees & beds, and let completely dry, *then* let them loose – works like a charm! (y)

  • Jo

    I recently used spot on by zodiac on my 5 year old male cat and for the last few days he has been sneezing blood and hopping around as if he is scared to walk. He also has been getting lost. After researching online and talking to my vet I have learned that this is a common problem with this product. Skin sensitivity is one thing but toxicity and neurological damage and death is another. DO NOT USE THIS PRODUCT!

  • Em

    I was hesitant, so I used a smaller amount on a cloth and pet them with it, and guess what?! The cats are JUST fine. they haven’t been sick, or lost hair, they are happy because they aren’t miserable scratching now. Animals get bugs and need something. I would use this over Advantage or Frontline anyday. want something natural? Give your pets regular baths, keep them indoors, and vacuum thoroughly weekly. Otherwise you’re out of luck.

    • Em too

      I just spent $200 at the vet on my indoor cat after using zodiac spot on gave my cat hives.. Loss of hair and irritated skin.
      Spend the extra money on NOT giving your cat this product.
      You’re lucky your cat didn’t react like ours. This reaction happened after the second treatment so be careful when you’re reapplying.

  • V

    We put zodiac spot-on 11 on our 1 year old cat Gaston the day before yesterday. He was properly dosed according to package directions. We went to the vet. yesterday, (after I read all of the comments on this blog) because of a bit of some loss of balance. The vet. told us to never use this product again, gave him a shot of anti-poison and told us to wash Gaston with water and that every thing would certainly be ok. WRONG!!! We heard our cat have seizures this morning, we called another vet., the 24h vet. and he told us the same thing, that this product was toxic and that our cat was in deed dying. Our cat died 15 minutes ago gasping for air! My boyfriend had to end his suffering. This product is toxic if injested but THEY’RE CATS, they will lick it untill satisfaction of clealiness! Don’t use this product even if people like Ann give you those comments (sorry Ann, no sympathy here for you)…. Very toxic and dangerous!!!

  • marcia nessle

    I applied Advantage II to all seven of my cats on Sunday. This morning (Wednesday) one of my cats went into seizures, lost control of his bladder and bowels, began gasping for air, and died while being rushed to the vet. This was a previously healthy one year old cat with no medical conditions. He was properly dosed according to package directions. However, he likely ingested enough of the toxin by repeatedly grooming the other cats over a couple of days that it killed him. There is no warning about nor instructions for using this product in a multiple cat household.

  • Robin

    I recently sprayed the Zodiac spray on my cat…like I was instructed. Not only did my nail polish come off on her, but the day after, my cat’s fur not only looks and feels greasy…has started to fall out!!! I gave her a bath to wash away the product! Never again will I use something like this! The smell was pretty overpowering too!

  • Ann

    I have a large kennel and am always looking for a more economical way to provide coverage. After reading this extremely lengthy comment, it appears that his complaint is that the warning about sensitivity should be in larger type. There are regulations that monitor type size and ingredients in products. It is the CONSUMER’S responsibility to read packaging (even if you require a magnifying glass) before you choose to buy it. Sorry, no sympathy here. Also, whoever chooses to throw away a product based on a comment on this (or any site) is just throwing away their money. If you decide you don’t want to use it after you purchase it….return it. (that’s just me, I don’t tend to over react and I value every penny I have)
    I worked in preparing packaging design and am familiar with the regulations required. We have to have packaging approved. Statements about possible reactions to the product are required to be in a certain type size per package.

    Again…just my thoughts. Bottom line…buyer beware.

    • childrencome1st

      What products do you use for flea treatment and prevention?
      As a kennel operator we’d love to hear about your experience with this product or any of zodiacs products or just the products you use ? Thank you want to see what you use as your a kennel operator

  • Chris

    Thanks for sharing this info ….I have a package of it here …I will just throw in the garbage!!!

    • childrencome1st

      Bring back for refund even if one tube of three is used petstores still will refund your money or at least give u gift card for credit for another product in their store.

  • SheenaD

    I recently put the zodiac spot on treatment on my dog, and noticed she was very irritated by it for about 48 hours. A few days later, I noticed a large, rough, hard patch on her skin where I had applied the treatment. It looks awful, but she doesn’t seem to be bothered by it anymore. I’m concerned, and definitely won’t be using the treatment again. I guess it’s back to the expensive sentinel!

  • Morgan

    I have used Zodiac spot on on my dogs for 3 years. NEVER have any of them had any problems. Not saying it doesn’t happen or can’t happen. I just want everyone to realize that just like every medication we take as humans have side effects so do medications for pets. Does every human who takes penicillin experience hives or a severe allergic reaction? NO, so every dog/cat that uses spot on will NOT experience a severe reaction. My dogs have never had any reactions and I personally feel this product worked better than front line. I am sorry for all who experienced loss or sorrow, but unless the product is all natural and 100% guaranteed safe then there will always be possible side effects.

  • Ann H

    I have been going through these comments and I am sick from this product. We have been using it for a few months on the cat and where she has been which has been our bedroom and I have been going crazy and itching a whole lot and not sleeping. The poor animals that have been going through this and now I have been going through this as well.

  • bobbie

    I just bought zodiac pray for my cat and dog, spray them, no problem, also i was going to apply the spot on for my dog, but after reading these reviews maybe i will not. I purchased this product because of the positive reviews i read on pet smart.com.

  • Jamie Quinn

    I too purchased Zodiac Powerspot from Pet Smart in Kingston Ontario. (15 kg or under)My Maltese/shih Tzu starting shaking within 24 hours of apply the liquid on her. She has been to the vet and I was told she has nerve damage and now is on pain medication and meds for diarrhea. She has not moved for 2 days without crying out in pain. My vet threw the product out and hopes my dog will get better

  • Lindsey Marlor

    I have three kittens and a 6 yr old dog. I used the zodiac on them and two of the cats had bad reactions!! I bathed all of them as soon as the crying and itching started. Two of the male kittens started shaking afterward and it continued all night. It did stop in the morning, but one of them has a huge bald spot and looks like the skin has been burned!! Its starting to scab, but there are some areas where its a greenish color. this flea treatment needs to be taken off the shelves!! Its only been acouple days ago and now I fear Im gonna wake up one morning and my babies are going to be dead. Im glad i found this article. I pray for everyone loses!

  • renita

    I am so broken hearted I had to put my cat to sleep yesterday because of this product. I hate this company. I called to file a complaint and the person I talk to was trying to defend this company. I explained that this product is all over the internet and people and saying that this product killed their cats and dogs. and he didnt believe me. I am willing to go above and beyond to get this product off the shelves in pet stores. we go to pet thinking the products are safe for our animals and it is not. How can we even trust pets stores. I am furious…… I planned on taking this company to court for the lost of my baby. [personal contact info deleted by comments editor]

  • Tina

    I used this on my cat. She is an outdoor cat When she came home she was shaky. The next morning she was convulsing and Had to be put down. It broke my heart and I think the product should be pulled from the stores after everything I have read here

  • Label Reader

    I am not finding these comments helpful because people are not specifying exactly which product they used. I bought (Canadian) Zodiac Spot On II for cats and the active ingredient is the insect growth regulator (S)-Methoprene. This is quite different from the products with permethrin. Are you people saying you still had a problem with products containing only insect growth regulators?

  • Loki’s Mom

    Yup, just tossed this in the trash. I’ve 1 cat and two ferrets.

    My cat’s had fleas about a month or so now, was trying to treat him with all natural stuff but it hasnt seamed to be working and he’s been so distressed and uncomfortable with the fleas. So I picked up this Zodiac stuff as it was all the pet store had. He hasn’t had any adverse effects *crosses fingers* I put the first treatment on him a few days ago and there’s been no rash, hair loss, pain etc. Just a little drooling where I think he may have licked some. I’ve since given him a through bath scrubbing him lots to get this crap off him. I don’t want to risk it after hearing all these heartbreaking stories. I’ll stick to the all natural treatments and keep working him over with the flea comb and pray this doesn’t come back to bite me in the ass…

  • Wags mommy

    I got zodiac on spot for my little girl 2 days ago. Now she wont eat. She has vomited bile,brown and yellow. She has no energy. We have started electrolytes and benedryl. I have bathed her 2xs today. What else can i do?

  • Nadine

    My cat’s pupils are dilated and he is going blind after using Zodiac flea & tick spray for dogs and cats. I have been using it over the past 3 months. Used it 3 times. Does anyone know if this can be reversed?? I will phone vet in morning.

  • Carol Macomeber

    We’ve used the appropriate Zodiac spot on flea treatment for our three cats and three dogs for many years. It works great – no fleas and no problems. I love it. Saves lots of money and works great, despite what vets would have us believe.

  • Barb

    I was at the pet smart where I love the customer service. Chatting with the service clerk, I asked if they carried Revolution as my dogs were due for their next treatment. She told me that only the vets carried it but they have a version that is basically the same thing but half the price. She swore by it and said that all her dogs and cats were on it. Thinking that this was some conspiracy, I went ahead and bought the Zodiac Pro Spot. My 8 month old zuchons were fine for the first four hours but soon they started to be irritated and try to scratch the area were it was applied between the shoulder blades. Both of them are having some sort or reaction: Whining, hiding,scratching, not being able to sleep, low appetite, watery eyes. I washed them 3 times already but it is obviously under the skin by now. I am presently waiting for the vet appointment and pray that there is nothing more serious. I just wished that I didn’t listen to the sales clerk and paid the money at the vet for revolution as usual. As I am really “PAYING FOR IT” now. I hope every one realizes the risks when trying the over the counter treatments.

  • Tom

    I had the same problem with advantage and revolution (my vets suggested them, but I no longer go to that vet anymore). Burning off the fur, but no issues with either the zodiac spot on for dogs or cats. I love the house spray! Been using it for years. Only products I do use anymore. Sorry to hear it did not work well for you but zodiac is the first flea treatment that did not harm my animals.

  • michele

    I have 4 cats and two days ago applied the zodiac spot flea killer on back of neck- they ALL are twitching, drooling and acting funny.

  • Ed

    We put the “spot On” product on our miniature poodle. She went crazy running and scratching like something was burning her. Called the ASPCA hot line. Washed the dog with dish washing soap. It helped but almost 24 hours later she’s still acting like its bothering her. Stay away from this product!

  • Luke

    We tried the spot on treatment on our 7lb yorky. She immediately started frantically running on the floor and acting like she was in pain. She trembled and was obviously in trouble. We bathed he really well with a quality dog shampoo and after drying she was ok but exhausted. We got to it before the product dried and I think we were pretty lucky. DO NOT use this on your dog. It’s just not worth it.

  • Cindy

    My cat just died suddenly yesterday. I had put the Zodiac on him less than 2 weeks ago, and it caused a bald spot and irritation. I never imagined it would kill him.

  • Maria

    I used bio spot on my cats and they too have a bald spot and a burn where I put the flee medicine. My cats actually had seizures and concussions due to this product. I am so happy my cats are recovering after a scary couple of days at the vets. I DO NOT RECOMMEND THIS PRODUCT

  • Susan

    It is 48 hours since I used this on my hairless dog. He is licking his paws nonstop, jerking shaking his head. I bathed him tonight. Is there something I can give him?

  • Mandy

    I am actually surprised at these events. I am sorry that animals are suffering and have died.

    I, for one, through. Will use nothing but Zodiac. I have used it every year for the last 4 years on my dog and have had nothing but great results. I won’t buy the vet stuff because a Vet that I am friends with told me that the only difference between vet med and the high end store med is the label and about 40.00 cheaper. It’s about 60.00 for a 3 mth supply from the vet and 16.00 for Zodiac and my vet told me that if I didn’t buy the vet med, Zodiac was the only one she would recommend to anyone.

    I am very sorry for all the bad reactions, but I just don’t think that the product is so bad it needs to be taken off the market.

    That’s like trying to take Peanut Butter of the shelves because some people get really sick or can die from reactions.

    I think with every product on the market, there will always be worse cases and bad reactions.

  • Kelly Carson

    I put Zodiac on my cat NINE years ago and last week the burn symptoms were back. I treated him holistically, because I will NEVER dump pharmaceuticals on my pets after what Oscar and I went through NINE years ago. Yet here we are – NINE years later.

    Of course Zodiac claimed that Oscar had a “rare allergic reaction” when I contacted them. The veterinarian who treated Oscar for second degree burns in 2001 simply said “buyer beware” – so much for the healing arts. But Zodiac funded HIS education at whatever university he gleaned his degree from, so we’ve hit the wall on any action from veterinarians.

    Are a few fleas worth this suffering? Someone asked in an earlier post – what do we do to get this crap off the market. Noise. Big noise. Talk to the vendors who carry it in your neighborhoods. Tell your vet that Advantage (which – by the way – the vet/pharma corporation tells us is becoming INEFFECTIVE against fleas and they will be developing something else)is a pesticide that to date has no scientific or anecdotal evidence that is any safer than the rogue Zodiac product.

    Get your photos to your local media. If your local pet food store is denying the suffering by continuing to carry this product, take your pictures to a local paper. There is a sympathetic ear in every community paper. Stop this.

  • Trisha Castillo

    I bought a Zodiac flea collar for my cat. Within 30 minutes she was disoriented and her muscles were twitching. I took the collar off and washed the cat, but she didn’t get better so I took her to the vet. She’s better now, but she had to stay with the vet overnight for monitoring and for IV fluids/medication. My cat nearly died from a product that was supposed to alleviate the discomfort she was experiencing from the fleas.

    I’ve had about 12 cats in my lifetime and none has ever reacted this way to a flea collar. I was horrified to see my cat so ill. I am grateful that she’s better and that I was able to get medical care for her in time. But I can’t believe that a product this dangerous is on the market.

    I emailed Wellmark, the manufacturer of Zodiac products. I received a form-letter email with a generic “we’re sorry to hear about the difficulties you and your cat experienced…” and contact information for the ASPCA poison control center. They didn’t even offer to refund the cost of the collar.

  • Annie Miller

    I did not use the Spot On – I used Zodiac flea collars on all four of my cats. I first noticed that two of my cats had red-rimmed and watery eyes after one day. The third day I removed the collar from one of the affected cats and like an idiot did not remove it from the other affected cat until the fourth day when his eye was swollen shut and weeping heavily. He is now partially blind in one eye and totally blind in the other. The other cat recovered completely, but I was told by the vet it was the chemicals used in the collar that caused the problem. I called Zodiac to let them know and they blamed the health of the cats. My cats were perfectly healthy prior to this incident. Thank you so much Zodiac

  • Rowdy Tavern

    I work in a vet clinic and it is so sad how many animals we see (mostly cats) that are adversely affected by spot ons like Hartz and Zodiac and it’s not necessarily b/c an owner placed the dog one on the cat. The dogs ones, if ingested by a pet are equally as toxic to both dogs and cats. Kelowna Animal Hosp. has done a video spot on the toxic effects on a Yorki they had in that had ingested the spot on.
    In cats, they lack the enzyme to process permethrins and so causes liver failure, by the time we see them they are usually tremoring uncontrollably.
    Yes, like some of you have pointed out, any pet can react to ANY medication, however it’s the severity that we are concerned about. Like Advantage… If your pet ate an entire vial of the Advantage, he/she may drool excessively and/or vomit. That’s the end of it. No medical treatment is necessary and there is no long term side effects. Do the same with a pet store spot on and you will no longer have a pet. Vet products are VET ONLY for a reason, they are properly controlled and tested. We aren’t trying to rip you off, we genuinely do not want your pet to die just b/c it has fleas!
    Localized reactions, like the hair loss, are side effects of any topical treatments and we rarely see even those.
    Why pet stores insist on selling these products is beyond me, why they would continue to put pets at risk for the sake of “supply and demand”.
    Sorry to all of you who have had your pets affected. It’s so hard to watch them go through this. Try not to blame yourselves though, even using the products to the letter can still cause death. But please, if your pets are affected, write to the store you’ve bought it from and ask it to be removed from sales as well as to the company that makes this god awful stuff!

  • Kim

    And when I found my cat the fleas were just everywhere. It was more like they were feeding off the Zodiac Spot On Flea Control. It should have been killing the fleas NOT MY CAT!

  • Kim

    I put Zodiac Spot On Flea Control on my cat and he died 3 days later. The only new thing was the Zodiac Spot On Flea Control. He was 5 weeks away from his first birthday.
    I’ve also had problems with another cat when I used the Hartz Ultra Guard. Thank goodness I was able to save her.

  • jane

    We bought Zodiac at the pet store. It almost killed our 5 kittens, and 3 cats! It gave me double vision, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. We all are still sick. Don’t use it!!!!! My condolenses for the other pets and loving owners.

  • Samantha

    I sprayed Zodiac Flea & Tick Spray for Dogs, Cats, Puppies & Kittens on cat a few months ago, and lately she seems to be becoming more and more sick. I brought her to the vet a couple weeks ago when she started walking srangely and acting very lethargic with a loss of interest in being pet or eating, which used to be her two most favorite things to do. Her third eyelid was also showing in one eye and it had never done that before. The vet couldn’t find anything wrong with her and couldn’t see a reason to do any further testing, he thought it could be that she was just stressed for some reason.

    So I brought her back home, hoping she would soon return to her old self. She seemed to start getting better, but is now starting to have what appears to me to be seizures and its a horrible experience for both her and for me. She’s also not going to the bathroom very often, and the last time she did, I noticed blood in her urine and stool. I am bringing her back to the vet tomorrow, but I was wondering if anyone else experienced anything like this after using this product or others like it, and if its possible that it could’ve taken this long for the spray to have an affect on her or that if it was going to have an adverse affect that it would have happened sooner after using the product. I hope that I didn’t cause what’s happening to my cat now by using this product a few months ago 🙁

  • peggy

    Used Zodiac on my dog.By the next day she was walking funny and started with a rash.We were told to wash her with Dawn dish soap and break open vitamin E capsules to put on her rash.This morning 3 days later she now has brusing.The vet put her on antibiotics.If there is still brusing in 2 days he will do blood work.NEVER AGAIN will I buy ZODIAC onlt FRONTLINE

  • Gigi Rossignol

    This zodiac,Spot on 11 is absolutly unacceptable >I have use it and it does not work at allMy beautiful sacha Is now letargic and does not look well and she still have fleas ..I am discusted about this product ..

  • Condrada

    Dogs and Cats scratch their body not just because of fleas, they might have food allergies, so before applying any Flea control products, consult with your vet first.

  • barbara

    my husband put spot on flee control on one of our cats and he begain spitting and foaming at the mouth he instantly washed it off sur glad we didn’t get it on any of the rest we will never but that stuff again it should be taken off the market thankfully we noticed him acting funny.

  • MAE

    a few years ago i began using zodiac for my precious dogs and cats it was the shampoo most of them did ok.. so i bought a brand new bottle well when i used it on my dachshund within 48 hours she was dead.. i was so upset and sent a email to zodiac to tell them what had happened.. and lo and behold they never replied.. the vet said that Zodiac was a very strong product.. sometimes too strong for those in which it was intended.. i have had no other problems since i quit using it.. my animals have reacted quite well with other flea meds so far.. i am so sorry to hear that others are having to go through this.. even though it killed the fleas on my dogs it killed my dog.. so sometimes stronger isnt always better// i will never forget my beloved muffy.she was my birthday present from my husband.. so i was very angry.. yes things happen but i get extremely anger when you try to contact someone about it.. and they dont even respond back with an im sorry or nothing.. man what a non caring company these companies can be..

  • ash

    Wow you are not supposed to use it for rats? You should research more.My cats dont have any issue with it and it helps. I dont see why you all would SPRAY your animals with that shit…its a chemical and it has side effects

  • Jenny

    My rats had mites on their fur, and THAT caused fur loss, twitching, shaking, and infected raw patches. I used a spot-on that contained the same insecticide that’s in the shampoos I use to get rid of my niece’s headlice (permethrin). They are now free of lice and perky again.
    In the case of my rats, it was the mites that made them so ill. Maybe regulation is different in the UK, but the instructions on the package were extremely clear – especially about weighing your animal to avoid overdosing and to keep the product away from cats.

  • Honey

    It killed my cat! Stop using it immediately, contact the EPA and make a complaint. The best thing to use, if you can bathe your cat is Dawn hand dishwashing liquid.

  • CharlieR

    I just bought the Premise Spray and the Spot on II flea control drops for my cats since the Advantage I put on them 2 wks ago, stopped working a week ago. The girl at the Global Pet Food Store said that alot of people have been complaining that the Advantage isn’t working this year. I’m thinking that the fleas are developing immunity.

    And by the way, ALL flea treatments are pesticides, people. And just like people, even though the statistics say they are relatively safe, some animals DO have adverse reactions to some products.

    I’ll be vacumming and cleaning and treating the house, and must wait a week before applying the new drops to the cats.

  • Just Fine Here

    I bought the product for my dog, was questioning the purchase because of the price but to my surprise, it worked just fine! I bathe my dog weekly and a week later after using the product, no fleas!

    No itching/scratching/crying that I read about. Also, the comment about tiny/tiny print regarding ‘cautions’ is inaccurate … it’s the same point size as all other print and disclaimers, bold paragraph headings aside.

    I find all these comments just plain silly … um, you’re using a chemical on your pet and in disbelief there’s an adverse reaction. Hmmm, kinda like taking a antibiotic and getting diarrhea?

    Well, like all things on the internet, do your own research and be aware, 99% of the reviews on-line are dissatisfied customers. The population that’s happy with the product get on with their lives. Except me. Darn.

  • blue

    I’m sorry about what happened to your cats. But I’m just a little puzzled how you didn’t already know that something that will KILL FLEAS is a PESTICIDE (“pest” meaning fleas/bugs, “cide” meaning to kill). To me that’s like not knowing that bleach will make your clothes white. I don’t think the makers of bleach products need to put warnings in bold print about how their product could damage your colored clothes, simply because it goes without saying – it is common sense. Something that KILLS fleas could possibly harm your animal as well. To me this is painfully obvious. That is the risk you take when using ANY form of medication – whether for humans or animals, over the counter or prescription only. Again I’m sorry about your cats and I hope they feel better, but I don’t believe that ALL of the blame lies with the makers of zodiac. I think their major mistake was giving their customers too much credit for being logical, when I’ve noticed a lot of people these days need everything spelled out for them (and even you commented on how many packages do just that nowadays).

  • Crystal

    I am so sorry to everyone whose animal suffered or passed due to this or any other over the counter medicine.I would like to know why are companies still producing this stuff when it’s causing much more harm than good.Is there any way we can demand our stores to ban these harmful products to make sure no future pet owners have to suffer through the same thing.

  • Maile

    I am sorry to hear the troubling comments on this posting..but it is not only OTC products for I used frontline on my dog and had an adverse reaction with her…I have used Zodiac products(for over 10 yrs) from the shampoo’s to the spot on and have had great success with it…I have even used it on my cat(the cat product)..The dog products have been used on (7) English Springer Spaniels(show dogs,(3) English Pointers(show dogs) and a mix breed the later 4 being short haired.

  • Kristen

    I adopted a 3 legged yellow lab from the humane society this summer, shes 2 yrs old and shes a shot of life. She got fleas this september, and I used zodiac spray for large dogs. Now her whole back is bald, and irritated, and 2 hours after her spray she had her first seizure I’ve ever seen in the 3months I had her. Took her to the emergency vet clinic. 300dollars and 5 hours later a lady in scrubs mentioned many problems with the zodiac spray for flea/tick control with dogs and cats. The vet monitored her (and of course she didnt have another seizure). DONT BUY ZODIAC OR ANY OTC FLEA PRODUCT- I dont believe that manufacturers of pet products are under the same rules and legislations as products for humans, and its a business, they dont care about your pet. I know its a cheap alternative and the well known pet stores make you think your doing the right thing, but they’re not veterinarian and i know firsthand that my otherwise healthy dog has had many adverse reactions with it.

  • J.B.

    I was just about to put this stuff on my 5 lb puppy and 15lb dog I am not willing to take this risk either it will be going in the trash immediatly. Thank you so much my dog Sassy died from eating tainted dog food (remember that walmart petfood recall?) I couldnt imagine having me and my son have to go through that again. I cant thank you enough.

  • andre

    I used flea & tick spray on my cat who’s name was tiger thinking that it would help with instead 24hrs later he died, the vet hospital told me that this product 1 does not work is toxic not only to humans but to animals witch really concerns me cause he was only 4 so if I don’t say anything that means he was nothing no he was my best friend he also has helped in my recovery I got him when his eyes opened up and he died in my arms aug 28 5:15 am and all That I did to protect him from everything else go to a pet store to help him instead he is dead.

  • C.M.

    Matt, you are not alone! I had similar reaction with my DOG. My vet was not aware of this being a problem with dogs (permethrin) only cats…. now they know! They told me to report the incident to the ASPCA poison hotline(who told me they will file a report with EPA too)… they are getting more and more complaints against this product and the damage it is causing not only to CATS, but DOGS too- seeming to be more a problem in the small/toy breeds! I emailed Wellmark(maker or Zodiac) and I have yet to even have received ANY comment in return… I am looking into lawyer!

  • Victora

    So i just wanted to say, No matter what kind of animal you have….NEVER EVER use any type of over the counter product!!!!! No matter if u have a cat or dog!!! You basically get what u pay for!!!! Spend your money on something thats gonna work!

  • Matt

    Yesterday my wife and I put some Zodiac Spot On, on our dog. We had never used it
    before but were in a pinch because she needed it. The dog started to convulse and have spazzims. We rushed her to the ER Vet and they told us that they see this happen all the time with this Zodiac crap. The incredient Permitherin or something like that is a pesticide! Who the hell would put that on their pet if they knew. It makes up 48% of the solution. NO WARNINGS ON THE BOX our dog would have surley died had we not brought her in the vet said. I am contacting the company and they will reimburse me and pull this crap off the shelf. Does anyone know if a class action lawsuit has been started against this company yet?

  • I went through a nightmare with Zodiac Spot On. An emotional and financial nightmare. I am so angry with Wellmark International. I am simply horrified this product is still on the market. I hope everyone shares their experiences with this toxic product with the EPA. Visit my hub on the topic.

  • You know when I wrote this article over a year ago it was to vent about what had happened to my animals and to protest about what I saw as ilresponsible actions on the part of the company. Now that I’ve been reading all the letters and comments from other people – especially those who’ve decided not to use the produce after reading the post – I’m just glad my story has served as a warning to them about the dangers and might have saved them the agony of watching their animals suffer.

    Of course I also see how lucky we were as our guys suffered only mild harm compared to what some of you had to endure – I did persue the manner with Health Canada – the people who regulate pesticides and their ilk in Canada – in the hopes of some action being taken against the company, but unfortunately it’s still for sale in pet stores and I’ve not noticed any changes to their packaging.

    Please consult your vet before applying any product to your pet – even ones sold over the counter in a reputable pet store. Fleas and especially mites can cause sever damage to your pet, but make sure that what you use to take care of one problem doesn’t cause even more damage.


  • Heather

    Update: I washed the disgusting vile off with Ivory soap and warm water (though this was 5 or 6 hours after the application- I hope it wasn’t too late), my vet called me the next morning and said I did the right thing by washing it off- he said that Zodiac Spot On for cats should NOT be on the market- that it poisons the blood stream- yes, killing fleas but also making the cat sick. My baby seemed better after I washed it off- she has been eating and purring and acting normal. I am still taking her to see the vet again tonight just to make sure. I am FURIOUS- no where on the box does it state these symptoms- if I had known, I would not have subjected my cat to this. (Though I guess that’s why it’s not on the package- if we knew the risks, we wouldn’t buy it). There are some people on here saying that they use this stuff with no harmful effects- fine but just the fact that there seem to be many of us who have had bad experiences means to me that no one should take the risk.

  • Heather

    I wish I had read this blog before applying Zodiac Spot On (advertised for cats and kittens) to my cat last night! I feel so horribly guilty- a few hours after the application she just went crazy- running around the apartment, tearing at her back and crying…then came the fur falling out. I was crying so much- I feel so guilty for doing this to her- I bought this evil stuff at a reputable pet store and the guy who worked at the pet store actually recommended it. I am praying that my cat doesn’t get worse or die. I am taking her to the vet. This stuff should NOT be on the market!!!! I hope more people read this before making the mistake that I did. 🙁

  • Jason

    Just washed my two cats and was getting ready to apply Zodiac Spot On Plus to the both of them. Before I did, I wandered onto the internet just looking for more info then was provided on the box.

    Glad I did.

    I think I will just have to be more vigilant in my cleaning and vaccuming. The cats, thankfully, are very tame in the tub and will be getting them more frequently.

    I had my doubts when I purchased this product and all though I am sure it does work most of the time, it is a gamble I am not willing to take after reading comments on this site, as well as others.

    Off to the trash it goes.

  • jen

    Hello,Everyone I was pretty upset about the whole thing I have been spending money left and right trying to get these fleas out of my home. I am very thankful that my animals are still alive but now all of them have fleas like I said in my first letter it was like I fed the fleas with this crap I did find a all natural spray that killed them but it doesn’t get rid of them. I wrote the BBB and the company said they would give me my money back like for all those people who lost animals what will that do the thing that I couldn’t believe was the company said this is the first they have ever heard of a problem I find that very hard to believe. Has anyone else tried reporting them to the BBB? I also said that they need to put more time into studying and testing the product but like they will! Hope everyone doing better. bye Jen

  • Marina

    I am SO angry. My poor cat is going through the same thing as writting in the article, and I applied this GARBAGE over 1 month ago. I am sorry to everyone for their losses of their animals.

  • Jen

    I had finally got to bring home my dog that had been living with my in laws and to my surprise he had fleas, so needless to say so did my 4 cats and other dog. Since we had to treat 6 animals we went with the zodiac and about a day or two later I swear there were 100% more fleas than to begin with. My dogs have been going out of there minds can’t sit still so far my cats seem fine except for still having the fleas. I am so glad I found this because since the fleas weren’t gone, I was going to treat them again. Even though it would be too early, I couldn’t bare to seem them so miserable. I too have notice my whole family feeling itchy too but I believe that has something to do with how much the fleas have multiplied. It was like food for them. Usually you don’t see the fleas, you can actually see them walking all over the animals it is crazy! I know that some people have used it and have no problem. I have 4 cats and 2 dogs and it didn’t work one bit on any of them,infact it made it worse. I will never being buying this again!!! Even if something happens lets say in a day or even a couple of hours, bathing the animal isn’t going to do anything because the product is in the bloodstream by then. Anything that is topical on animals and us seeps into our skin. Have you ever heard people say make sure you can eat what you put on your skin? That makes sense! There are times that something is needed that surely you can’t eat. For example ,lice shampoo, which is completely toxic and I am sure there has to be some bad side effects with that stuff. Something like this where they know there is some side effects shouldn’t be used unless they have an antidoate for the side effects. Even though there are some who use it there really seems to be a large % of people who use it and it don’t work example me 6 animals 4 cats and 2 dogs and it didn’t work on not one of them well it worked by feeding the fleas!!
    Not always but when there is a medication that causes problems severe enough to cause death it usually gets zapped off the shelves or the doc isn’t suppose to prescribe it anymore. I’m sure you’ve seen on Tv the commericals about meds and how you can contact them and get money for whatever has happened. Well, to alot of people thier pets are more than just a pet we take care of them as if they are our children. But something like this is just whatever ,it shouldn’t be like this all those people who have suffered and spent money on hopes of curing thier animals should be incompensated for it. There should be some way for us to control this. I have four children and 6 animals and don’t have money to spend on stuff that doesn’t work and now I have to spend more money that I don’t have. The company sure have a money back guarentee on it but they already know it doesn’t work! Thanks to all that have made this info avaiable if it wasn’t for you I would have treated my animals again and god only knows what would have happen! I hope everyones animals are ok and bless all the little ones in heaven. With all the rotten in the world this is the last thing we need animals dying because people are trying to make them comfortable 🙁 Jen

  • Leeanne

    About a month ago, I brought home a stray (and filthy!!) dog. I found his owners the next day, but about 3 weeks later, my house became infested with fleas!!! We bought some Zodiac flea spray. First, we only sprayed upstairs. Before spraying on the main floor, I decided I’d better put my rabbit (who lived on the main floor) into the garage for a night or two. After 3 nights, and EVERY window in the house being open for that time, we brought the rabbit back in (in his cage). The next night, he started convulsing, lying face first in his litter box and the corner of his cage. We rushed him to my vet (who specializes in exotic animals), where he spent 4 days on IV fluids, getting calcium shots, Vitamin K shots, daily blood tests, etc. On the second day at the vet’s, he became completely paralyzed. We visisted him every day. On the fourth day, while I was visiting him, he passed away. He was only 2 years old – my other rabbit passed away about 4 months ago at the age of 10 years.

    My vet now advised me that had I asked her first, there is a safe product to use with pets in the home. I believe it’s something like “Siphanol?”

    PLEEEEEASE, everyone, speak to your vet and take EVERY precaution, no matter what, when using these kinds of products. I will NEVER, EVER forgive myself for what I did to my rabbit.

  • debbie

    Last week, my cat of 14 years died of what I thought was just old age. This morning another one of my cats is dead and the only commonality is the Zoidac Spot On Flea Control. I did not use full strength on either cat and did not use any on the third cat. So far the third cat is doing fine….so far. Just an observation….

  • Ron

    Well, I used Frontline (from Vet) on my cat with no bad or good results. The cat wasn’t sick and the fleas were happy as can be (not one of them died from the Frontline). I have also used Hartz Ultra Guard Plus (OTC from Walmart) and got better results. Dead fleas and a live cat.

    Moral of the story:
    For every person screaming about how terrible this “poison” is, there are at least ten more who have no complaints (so you won’t usually see them posting here). ANY, and I repeat, ANY flea medication can have harmful effects, so keep that in mind.

    I’m not trying to minimalize the fact that some people have had terrible things happen to their beloved pets. Really, I’m not. I’m just trying to point to the fact that for some of us those so called “safe” medications, that you get from a vet, don’t always work. And those so called “poisonous” meds, that you can buy OTC, sometimes are the only ones that actually work for some of us.

  • You can get Advantage, Frontline and Revolution Blue from killfleaz.com without a prescription. It takes about a week for shipping from Australia, but they are authentic products and it costs about $6 for shippping.

    I have 4 cats and Spot-On doesn’t work at all. They are just indoor cats; and spot on didn’t even work. I can’t imagine putting it on an outdoor cat and hoping it would work.

  • Sharon

    I too tried this because I could not afford the “good stuff” and now I have 3 sick dogs. One I have to give Imodium to for his severe diarrhea and my 2 chihuahua’s have diarrhea now. This stuff is dangerous and should be taken off the market soon. What can we do to get it off the shelves soon before more animals die??????

  • bonnie

    My sweet cat baby Opie Taylordied this morning, I found him dead in the kitchen, I applied this on saturday, and later that night washed it offi. Yesterday, he was tired, but he wast eating, he did have some problem with his back legs. This morning I found my baby dead. I killed him with this stuff because I found a flea. Nothing will bring my baby back. I have no children, this was my child.

  • Vet Tech

    I’m not saying I wouldn’t recommend more expensive brands sold by your vet…

    but Spot On worked for my dog and cat, and neither had any sensitivity problem. Not even my dog, who has bad allergies and extremely sensitive skin.

    and I’m not saying it doesn’t happen…its just that products like Revolution, Advantage, Frontline, can all cause the same kind of problems.

    There are all these posts because people who use the product and have no problems will have no reason to seek out further information on problems with the product. Thus, the information is biased towards owners who had a bad experience with the stuff (which is unfortunate and its good to know about risks! they just all have risks)

    Spot on is fine with me every other month or so, but as a side note i just switched to Comfortis and i love it. it is taken orally, kills all fleas on dogs within about 4 hours, and is good for a month. so if your dog already has fleas, try this one…the impact is immediate! they do not currently have a feline version, or at least not that i am aware of.

    All medicin

  • RescueGuy

    This is why I only use Capstar on my critters. I don’t and never will trust any of the claims/promises of the chemical companies that make the stuff.

  • Debra Love

    About 7 years ago I bought Hartz brand spot flea killer . It was not formulated for petite weight cats. It poisoned her, she had severe muscle spasms, clouded eyes and drool. She took off out the door and returned the next morning in such an awful state we had her put to sleep. The Vet said it was either a mistake in the product packaging or a toxic dose. I still have guilt for hurting her. Her brother survived her but was ill and put to sleep a year later after losing all his teeth and had lumps under his fur. she was 5 he was 6.

  • ellemem

    Thank you for the article – – it may have saved my cat’s life today. I have used Zodiac flea treatments in the past, and no harm has come to our pets. Yesterday morning, I treated all three cats with Zodiac. Today, one of my cats came in from the rain and was shaking uncontrollably. At first, I thought he was simply cold. When the shaking didn’t stop after 45 minutes, I went on-line, looking for answers, thinking that maybe he had developed some type of muscle condition. I never thought that I might have poisoned him by using an OTC flea treatment. He is now at the vet’s, and they expect him to make a full recovery.

  • Alice

    Please email Animal Poison Control Center [napcc at aspca.org] and cc in [conrel at wellmarkint.com] to make them aware of what’s going on. I did, I emailed ASPCA told them that the “ZODIAC SPOT ON Flea Control for Cats and Kittens” is extremely dangerous to cats. I have three indoor cats who recently picked up fleas, so I bought “ZODIAC SPOT ON Flea Control for Cats and Kittens” and applied on their back between their shoulder blades, I followed the exact steps and precautions said on the box.

    My three cats’ back now have bald spots between their shoulder blades, look like it had been burnt; it is so red and swell. Two of my cats’ skins are red and extremely dry; they always try to scratch it, I had to put sweaters on them to stop them scratching on the spots. My third cat actually has infection on the spot, not sure because she scratched ’til it bleed or the solution actually caused the bleed.

    My vet told me never trust any OTC products.

    Thank you all for sharing this.

  • caution

    This does not apply only to OTC products. I have seen terrible reactions, hair loss, bleeding from Revolution.

    Get rid of the carpeting and other places fleas hide. You can get rid of fleas without resorting to these systemics. Who knows what else may come up about these products in the future.

    It is not true that all cats, even outdoor cats, have fleas. Ditto with dogs.

  • Susan

    Go to Topix Scabies Forum. There is alot of good information on there to beat these biting mites.

  • nancy

    Help! We have had a flea infestation in our home and cars. Our lab got fleas about a month ago, so we put him on Frontline but in the meantime fleas got in the house and somehow transported themselves into the car. We first tried a natural product powder in both car and home..this did not work and smell awful. Then we tried a Zodiak carpet and apholstry spray for fleas and ticks. It smelled better but ever since then, my husband and I can’t stop itching and feel like we are getting bitten. We called orik pest controll and had them spray and bomb our house and still we itch in the car and feel like we are going crazy. Has anyone had this happen or do you know if this stuff can cause such terrible pain and itching? What should we do? We thought we might have scabies and have also thrown out our mattress and are sleeping on our couch (itching got worse at night). HElp!!!

  • Rebecca

    Just a comment to the person posting October 3, 2007 about humans who can’t follow simple instructions. There just so happens to be TWO Zodiac products specifically made for cats. It’s called Spot On Plus Flea & Tick Control for Cats. It even has a Cat shaped applicator. I know because I have the packaging sitting right in front of me as I read these heart-breaking comments about people losing their pets. This product is going right back to the store. How sad that this person posting such an insensitive remark doesn’t get his facts straight before attacking these poor people that lost a true member of their family.

  • Ken

    Are you kidding? Several times in very large bold RED type, you are warned “do not use this product on CATS!!!” It’s stated everywhere on the packaging. I used this on my dog and when I was reading the instructions (something you might have considered) I was suprised by the number of warnings directed toward cat owners. You wrote this in May and I am writing in October. I find it difficult to believe that Wellmark has changed their packaging and warnings in the last five months. This sounds like another case of a human who can’t follow simple instructions and then wants to blame anybody and everybody else for their own shortcomings. DO NOT USE THIS PRODUCT ON CATS!!!
    And no, I don’t work for Wellmark, or any other pet industry company. I am just a dog owner who can read simple instructions.

  • Jeff

    Three weeks ago we applied Zodiac Spot-on for cats for our 5-month old kitten. We read the label; we had the right product for her age and weight. She was dead eight days later. Her symptoms after treating her: first general lethargy, then loss of appetite, then difficulty breathing and semi-paralysis of her hindquarters. I don’t know if it was the Zodiac or the severity of the fleas or both. It’s no fun watching your pet suffer or having to tell your young children that their pet is dead. A hard lesson learned; when we’re ready for another pet, we will use a vet in the future.

  • Jennifer

    I just bought this product and, since I hadn’t heard of it before, did a Google search for reviews. AM I EVER GLAD THAT I DID!!
    Between what I’ve read here and on amazon.com, it’s going straight back to the store where I bought it, where I will recommend to the staff that their management look into whether they should be carrying it.
    For the sake of my little munchkins (and my own peace of mind), thank the gods for the Internet!
    To James and those who commented, I hope your pets are well and recovered. Thanks for sharing your experiences to prevent others from repeating them.

  • Amanda

    We just recently applied the zodiac flea treatment to both of our dogs (a schnoodle and a bichon frise) and within 24 hours they were both crying out loud and unable to sleep or go more than 30 seconds without twitching and trying to get at their backs. It is awful to watch them go through this we have tried to wash it off and have given oatmeal baths and tried to give benadryl and neither seem to work too well. We are using a hotspot spray for them now and it seems to provide releif for an hour or so and then we have to reapply it. I dont think i would risk giving any future pets this stuff 🙁

  • Kimberlee Rice

    i’m sorry that i had to learn the hard way…my mom thought she was doing something good for max (my kitten…i call him my son) but it turned out to be near fatal. he still is not in the clear, but if he makes it through tonight he should be ok. but after the seizures he suffered corical blindness that may or may not go away. in max’s case it seems to be going away, but like i said, he’s so up and down that we still arn’t sure that he’s gonna be ok. i would think that this would have to be illegal in some way, but i guess not if it’s somewhere on the package..i just hope that more people check sites like this before subjecting their pets to this terrible product!

  • Rheanna

    I just put this stuff on my cat tonight and it made her start spitting like crazy, I’m assuming she licked some of it off of her skin. Needless to say, I threw her into the tub immediately. I’d rather suffer the scratches than know that I harmed my poor pet. 🙁 I hope your cats came through the spots on their skin okay,…

  • nurse4kitties

    I’m a licensed veterinary technician, and have put in many a night at an Animal ER/ICU…I cannot warn people enough to STEER CLEAR from ALL over the counter spot-on flea products…especially with cats (not that dogs can’t be harmed by them). Worse yet, never, ever, EVER put an over the counter dog flea product on a cat. I have seen hair loss (minor) and convulsions (major)…and worse.
    At the very least this stuff is ineffective.
    Unfortunately, it can also kill.
    I know.
    I’ve seen it.
    And James, I am so sorry about your dog. Thank you for turning an awful situation into the kind of action that has probably saved many lives.

  • Five years ago, my dog nearly died from a severe adverse reaction (grand mal seizures) to an over-the-counter flea control product