30 facts about pyrethrin and cats

Chrysanthemum. Image by Thomas B. from Pixabay
Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles:- Toxic to cats | Dangers to cats

Here are 30 facts about pyrethrin and cats. They are all centered around one vital fact: it is a strong poison. Care in use is essential. People use these treatments to benefit the health of their cats, not to harm or kill them.

  1. Pyrethrin comes from the chrysanthemum flower;
  2. Pyrethroids are a synthetic version of this chemical substance;
  3. Permethrin is a pyrethroid, a synthetic pyrethrin. Permethrin is used in some spot-on flea products for dogs and it is used I’m told in flea powders and collars for cats;
  4. It is difficult to find out which products contain pyrethrin insecticide. I find that surprising but my research indicates that it is true. Therefore, cat owners should read the product very carefully before using it;
  5. Insecticides like pyrethrin are poisons;
  6. When you try and deal effectively with parasites such as fleas, mites and ticks you’re going to use insecticides probably like pyrethrin on your companion animal, your home and your backyard. This means that you are spreading poison around the home. You have to be careful;
  7. When you use an insecticide preparation like pyrethrin you must follow the directions and precautions on the label very accurately otherwise you may be exposing your cat to a dangerous poison;
  8. An overdose of pyrethrin can cause your cat to twitch at the mouth, foam, convulse, collapse and fall into a coma;
  9. Insecticide toxicity such as pyrethrin toxicity can also include diarrhoea, asthmatic breathing, muscular twitching, jerking, and a staggering gait;
  10. The signs of poisoning may not be visible several days. It depends on the dosage and the type of insecticide chemical used;
  11. Pyrethrin is generally safe for dogs but cats and fish are very sensitive to it;
  12. As fish die with a minimal exposure, a cat that has been treated with pyrethrin must not walk into a pond where there are fish;
  13. Cats treated with pyrethrin should not be allowed to dip their paws into an aquarium;
  14. Cats are sensitive to pyrethrin and pyrethroids because they can’t break it down i.e. metabolise the agents quickly;
  15. The most common way for cats to be exposed to poisonous dosages of pyrethrin is due to owner error;
  16. The classic error is owners of cats and dogs using small dog pyrethrin insecticides on their cat thinking that it is okay;
  17. Never use a dog flea and tick topical spot-on product containing pyrethrin on your cat;
  18. Cats can be exposed to pyrethrin insecticides if they live in close contact with a dog. Sometimes dogs and cats groom each other. If a dog has been treated recently with a high concentration pyrethrin flea and tick treatment they can pass it on to their cat friend;
  19. If a dog has been treated with pyrethrin for external parasites, he or she should be separated from a companion until the product is completely dry;
  20. Flea and tick pyrethrin shampoos must be used only as directed and it should be kept in a safe place when not in use;
  21. There is no antidote for pyrethrin/pyrethroid poisoning cats;
  22. Always be extremely careful when using pyrethrin topical flea and tick preventatives and be very careful about using different flea/tick products on your cat and dog;
  23. Be careful about the quantity you apply. Read and comply with instructions strictly accurately and don’t try and modify them for convenience;
  24. If the indoors or outdoors of your home have been treated with insecticides keep your cat away from these areas until the product has completely dried;
  25. If you think your cat has been poisoned by pyrethrin please call your veterinarian as a matter of urgency;
  26. Pyrethrin is rapidly degraded in the environment by ultraviolet light and therefore has little residual activity;
  27. You will find pyrethrin in many shampoos, sprays, dips, dusts, foggers and premise sprays;
  28. Pyrethroids are more stable to sunlight than pyrethrin;
  29. The Pet Poison Helpline is available in North America by calling 800-213-6680;
  30. The use of these nasty but effective chemical products is souring I am told but with their convenience comes the responsibility to use them with great caution. As mentioned, you will use them to improve your cat’s health not to kill her.
Insecticide toxic to cats
Insecticide toxic to cats.


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