This page was last modified May 19, 2020.
Please Do NOT Give Your Dogs ANY Oral Flea & Tick-Killing Medications!
"On September 20, the FDA issued a communication for pet owners and veterinarians, warning about the potential for neurologic adverse events following the administration of certain flea and tick products to dogs and cats. The products named in the release are oral products, available by veterinary prescription only, that contain isoxazoline-based ingredients. These include Bravecto, Credelio, Nexgard, and Simparica." (Whole Dog Journal Blogs, Sept 27, 2018)
I have been warning my adopters for years about the dangers of oral flea/tick control medications, and this announcement from the FDA provides further proof that my warnings are legitimate.
I have always believed--just from common sense--that a pesticide taken orally which lasts for about one month (or three months in the case of Bravecto) is going to be dangerous--even more dangerous than a "spot-on" pesticide applied topically.
The information provided 1-14-16 by Dr. Elizabeth Carney, DVM, on her Website "Your Pets Need This" about Adverse Drug Events (ADEs) associated with the oral flea/tick products Nexgard and Bravecto put me on alert. Now, the FDA's "communication" about the risks of Nexgard, Bravecto and similar isoxazoline-based oral flea/tick preventatives just adds to the volume of evidence that THESE PRODUCTS ARE DOWNRIGHT DANGEROUS TO YOUR DOGS--EVEN IF THEY DON'T HAVE ANY OBVIOUS ADVERSE REACTIONS.
"But why would my veterinarian
prescribe a product for my dog (or cat) that is dangerous to them?"
However, most vets don't question the safety of FDA-approved medications and dismiss those who raise concerns about certain medications--unless the evidence is profound. Further, vets see the worst of what fleas and ticks (and other parasites) can do to dogs and cats, and so are willing to "lower the bar" of safety to prevent the awful conditions that fleas and ticks can cause.
Now, the evidence that oral flea/tick preventatives are dangerous to dogs and cats IS profound! Time to face the truth and NOT give your dogs ANY oral flea/tick-killing medications!
products CAN I give my dog that are not harmful to them to prevent fleas and
With just the daily use of Bug-Off Garlic, I have hardly seen any fleas on my dogs in all the years I've been running my rescue program!
Additionally, biotin--the other supplement that I give to all of my dogs-- prevents allergic reactions to fleas and other allergens and is great for dogs' skin and coat. Biotin is available in the vitamin section of your local grocery store. Many women take biotin because it makes their nails grow hard and fast and is great for hair. Lesser known is biotin's natural antihistamine properties--it really works great!
I recommend 5mg (5,000mcg) of biotin daily for dogs 40-90 lbs. For smaller dogs, you can purchase biotin in 1mg tablets or capsules and give one or more daily. Biotin is water-soluble and safe in quantities far exceeding those I've stated here.
If you must resort to pharmaceuticals to control fleas, please consider a flea reproduction inhibitor such as Program, instead of the toxic topical pesticide products. Program does not kill adult fleas but renders them sterile once they have fed on your dog, which will prevent any flea population outbreak in or around your home. Program, used in combination with an occasional bath using a flea shampoo and use of a flea comb will generally prevent any flea outbreaks. If you must use a topical flea-control product, please use it only during the months when fleas are a problem. Also, avoid "spot-on" flea control products sold at grocery stores--they are generally much more toxic (though less expensive) than those sold at vet offices.
As for other species of ticks that we find in the Central Valley, I simply recommend routine inspection and manual removal of these ticks. The most common ticks in lowland areas of the Central Valley are the Brown Dog Tick and the American Dog Tick. Though these ticks CAN carry certain diseases (though not Lyme Disease), the incidence of such disease are quite uncommon here in the Central Valley.
I live on a property that, unfortunately, is a haven for Brown Dog Ticks and American Dog Ticks. In the spring and early summer, I spend countless hours picking ticks off of my dogs. I've literally picked off thousands of ticks from my dogs over the years, and yes, more than a few from myself. The fallout? A little itching. Period. ZERO cases of tick-borne disease, ZERO broken tick mouthparts (that could lead to infection), and ZERO cases of infection from tick bites that required antibiotics. (If it's deer ticks you're dealing with, you will run the risk of breaking off the mouthparts when removing them.)
"But ticks are
.......more to come.
This page is a work in progress, so please forgive the limited content.
Welcome to the Health & Nutrition Information page of the GSRSV Website. This is a page that is only about 18 years overdue (as long as the GSRSV Website has existed)! I feel that information on this page is more important than any of the other content in this Website. After all, whether it applies to your children or your pets, what's more important than good health? The only thing that has kept me from creating this page sooner is that it is a daunting task--and my main mission of rescuing and rehoming dogs is a full-time job in itself.
There is so much misinformation out there about what's best for your dogs' health, much of it propagated by the industries that profit from the sale of their drugs and other products that are potentially harmful to your dogs. Sadly, some of the misinformation about what is good and what is not good for your dogs' health is passed along by veterinarians who either have not been exposed to non-traditional--yet factually based--ideas and information, or who simply feel that what they've learned in veterinary school is gospel.
There are also many natural supplements and remedies that are not only safe alternatives to their traditional medicinal counterparts, but are just as effective and often much less expensive. I hope that this page will introduce you to some of these supplements/remedies and help you maintain the good health of your dog(s) with the fewest risks to their longevity.
I want this page to be as interactive as possible, so if there is some info that you would like to see provided on this page, please let me (Brian Foran) know about it at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Another good online resource for natural/holistic veterinary information is the "Education" page of Hemopet.org. This page contains numerous posts written by Dr. Jean Dodds, DVM, and focuses on vaccines, nutrition and thyroid issues. (Thanks to Dianna Cheung for informing me of the Hemopet.org Website.)
Bloat (Gastric Dilitation/Volvulus)--every
GSD owner should know about this condition! Several of my adopters have lost
their GSDs to bloat!
Learn how to avoid bloat in your dog, and how to recognize the symptoms. Please click on this link to open a very informative Webpage about bloat. I recommend printing the article and placing it where you can immediately access it if you suspect that your dog is experiencing bloat. Click on this link for a printable MS Word version of the article.
Obesity in Dogs: Just as Harmful to
Dogs as to Humans
Raw Dog Food
Springtime, Inc is the ONLY company that I endorse on my Website, and I do so voluntarily with no "kickback." Springtime, Inc does provide GSRSV with a 10% discount on their products, but they have done so without any knowledge of my endorsement.