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      Fipronil May Have "Topical Consequences"

      Fleas and ticks are one of life's little annoyances. Today we are barraged by many products selling you the "easy and effective" solutions. Just a couple drops along the back of your pet and "poof", no more fleas (or ticks with some formulas). And it's so easy and effective.

      These products usually work well, really well. We do not have a problem with that. What you need to know is HOW they work. It could prove to be very hazardous not only to your pets, but your family as well. No one knows anything about the active ingredients in these products.

      We got our hands on the laboratory research and decided to uncover the hidden truth behind what really makes these products effective and why you may think twice about this flea prevention treatment.

      This article will focus on one active ingredient some of today's leading flea and tick prevention products contain, called Fipronil. Fipronil is a type of phenylpyrazol insecticide, which works by constricting blood vessels in order to shut down the central nervous system (a nerve inhibitor). This results in the death of an insect by contact and ingestion.

      What we know about this ingredient Fipronil is known to cause irritation to the eyes and skin of lab animals, as well as causing more serious long term problems such as loss of appetite, failure to urinate, increased excitability and seizures. Fipronil affects the liver, thyroid, kidneys and even the reproductive organs. Reproductive studies in rats over several generations show decreased litter size, decreased body weight in litters, decreased fertility, delay in development and even death of the fetus. Studies have also indicated an increase of thyroid tumors in these same animals.

      When you read the data, Fipronil is said to not be easily absorbed through the skin. However, in that same data, it is documented that 45-75% of the administered dose of Fipronil is excreted from the animal's body through feces and 5-25% through urine. Indicating that although these flea and tick products are not being administered orally, your pet is in fact absorbing these products internally and/or ingesting it through grooming itself.

      After applying this topical "insecticide" to your pet, the chemical slowly seeps through the oils of the fur, essentially forming a thin sticky film over the coat of the animal that does not wash off even after several baths and swimming. Just read the labels on the products themselves. They instruct you NOT to get this chemical on your skin when applying it. In our opinion, leaving these products on your pet makes it unsafe to touch your dog or cat without getting this chemical and others all over yourself, your children and even your furniture, leaving your family open to coming in contact with and even ingesting this chemical. The question begs an answer; If we must NOT get this chemical on our skin, what happens every time we pet, hug and kiss our animals? How much are we absorbing?

      You do not need to "wage war" on fleas and ticks with highly toxic chemicals.

      Remember, just because these treatments are odorless and invisible does not mean they are not harmful. Most insecticides and chemicals are slow, "silent killers."

      Above all, remember, convenient and effective does not always mean safe and healthy.

      In today's market there are thousands of natural products to repel fleas and ticks such as herbal (non-pesticide) collars, shampoos, powders, sprays, even herbal dips. The level of threat ticks pose to your pets depends on geographical location. Check with your local vet office. You may want to try one or more of these products together. Think prevention and protection.

      Try this formula from The Herbal Handbook: Cut two lemons in half and placed in a large pitcher of water. Keep in a cool dark place till the lemons are just turning bad. Squeeze all liquid from the lemons back into the pitcher. Disguard the lemons. Place some of this lemon solution in a spray bottle and lightly mist your dog before going out into mosquitoe areas. AVOID spraying on or near the eyes. Safe mosquitoe deterent, inexpensive to make and wonderful lemony scent.