Wednesday, January 21, 2015

EPA sued to ban toxic chemicals in flea collars and other pet products.

On January 5th of this year, the Natural Resource Defense Council filed a lawsuit in federal court against the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) challenging the agency’s decision to allow the continued use of a highly toxic pesticide called tetrachlovinphos (TCVP) in flea control products used on pets.

"Science shows, time and again, that brain and nervous system-damaging chemicals like TCVP are too harmful to have in our homes, on our pets and around our children," says Miriam Rotkin-Ellman, senior scientist with the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC).

What concerns us is that if these chemicals included in flea collars and other pet products are harming children, imagine what harm they may be doing to our pets?

In February 2014, the NRDC filed a lawsuit in federal court against the EPA seeking the agency to respond to NRDC’s petitions to cancel all manufacturer registrations and uses of neurotoxic pesticides propoxur and tetrachlorvinphos (TCVP), frequently found in popular pet flea treatment products. Sergeant’s Pet Care Products, Inc. Wellmark International and Hartz were among flea collars brands that NRDC called out for use of these hazardous chemicals.

Prompted by the NRDC’s 2014 lawsuit, the Environmental Protection Agency announced an agreement with Sergeant’s Pet Care Products, Inc. and Wellmark International to discontinue the use of the pesticide propoxur in flea collars as a result of findings in the NRDC's 'Poison on Pets II report' that found unsafe levels of pesticide residues on dogs and cats after the use of a flea collar. However, the EPA did not address the use of other dangerous chemicals in flea products like TCVP. Hence the NRDC's action this month.

In 2009, we interviewed the scientists from the Natural Resource Defense Council immediately following the release of their first 'Poison on Pets' report. We encourage you to read the interview and learn more about the dangers of some of the over the counter flea and tick products currently on the market.

Additionally, if you'd like to learn more about how you can combat fleas on your dog naturally, read our post from 2014, 'The Ultimate Flea Guide for the Green Dog.'

Photo courtesy of Takashi Hososhima.

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