FDA warns of possible side effects associated with tick, flea products

FILE PHOTO: A dog with PTSD that had been a laboratory test subject has won the Inspirational Animal of the Year Award. 

The FDA is alerting pet owners and veterinarians of potential adverse reactions in cats and dogs associated with certain flea and tick medications.

The warning is limited specifically to drugs in the isoxazoline class, which include FDA-approved drugs Bravecto, Credelio, Nexgard and Simparica, products used to treat and prevent flea infestations and to treat and control tick infestations.

Although these products can and have been safely used in the majority of dogs and cats, pet owners should consult with their veterinarian to review their patients’ medical histories and determine whether a product in the isoxazoline class is appropriate for their pet.

According to the FDA, while products in the isoxazoline class are considered safe and effective for dogs and cats, this information is being provided so pet owners can take it into consideration when choosing flea and tick products for their furry friends.

Isoxazoline products have been associated with neurologic adverse reactions, including muscle tremors, ataxia, and seizures in some dogs and cats. Although most dogs and cats haven’t had neurologic adverse reactions, seizures may occur in animals without a prior history.

The FDA advises that, if your dog or cat experiences any side effect while using an isoxazoline product, you should first consult your veterinarian.

To report suspected adverse drug events for these products and/or obtain a copy of the Safety Data Sheet (SDS) or for technical assistance, contact the appropriate manufacturers at the following phone numbers:
Merck Animal Health (Bravecto): 800-224-5318
Elanco Animal Health (Credelio): 888-545-5973
Merial (Nexgard): 888-637-4251
Zoetis (Simparica): 888-963-8471

Pet owners and veterinarians who have additional questions can contact or call 240-402-7002.