Thursday, August 27, 2009


Along with puppy dog kisses, a buddy and companion to enjoy things with your dog can unwillingly play host to some unsavory “bedfellows!” You might want the dog in the house, but entertaining the attached “creepy crawlers” is more than you bargained for.

Because the pet industry is a multi-billion dollar business, it’s not hard to understand then why the pharmaceutical companies would be at the forefront of this highly profitable enterprise. These companies have made a business out of appealing to the distraught pet owner’s sensitivities for the concern and love of their animals. One would think that their marketing department’s motto might be the old saying, “Nothing is too good for my pet.” And indeed, looking at the sales of flea, tick and heartworm preventatives these companies marketing departments advertising campaigns have proven to be very successful.

Many times when something is new and introduced to the public, we don’t get to see the long term results of some of these products before it’s too late. In other cases we might see them right away. From my research for this article, what I have gathered is we have compromised our dog’s health all in the name of wanting to keep them healthy. Now how could that be? We are doing what every other concerned pet owner is doing. We are trying to prevent our animal from the discomfort of bug bites and the itching and scratching that follows. More importantly we are trying to prevent our dogs from having long lasting health problems that if left untreated may put our dog’s life in danger.

With this in mind, we buy the hyped up advertising we see thinking we are doing the right thing for our animals. What we are buying and paying BIG money for is poisons. So you would think that the intelligent consumer would question "Why is it that I’m trying to prevent my animal from getting sick and now I’m putting poisons on or in his body?" How does that make sense? If by reading the label on the package of the flea and tick preventative that I should wear gloves so I don’t get this poisonous concoction on my skin, why am I putting it on my dog’s skin? Is his life not as precious as my own?

More and more research is finding that these topical solutions are producing some serious side effects in some dogs. These include: liver damage, kidney damage, hair loss, severe skin rashes, epileptic seizures, brain damage and inability to walk. Over time, some may get renal failure (kidney failure) or complete liver failure.

What I found most disturbing when researching this article was about the heartworm preventative that we use for our dogs. This is especially true for me as I just got off the telephone this morning having placed an order for my dog’s Interceptor. Like so many other pet owners I’m doing what I think is the best thing for my dogs, which is trying to keep them healthy. Because I’m trying to keep them healthy, am I unwillingly contributing to their health problems? I’m just doing what I always do. The medicine runs out, I call the supplier and place an order, not realizing that I just put out money to purchase some more poison disguised to taste good and my dogs readily take it thinking they’re getting another treat.

I used to treat my dogs with Frontline topical solution once a month. Now this is something I found incredible and gave me reason to pause. These products, the flea and tick solutions as well as the heartworm preventative must be very strong and powerful to only have to give it to them once a month and the pesky little “buggers” will leave my dog alone.

All of this got me to thinking. If I go out of my way to buy my dogs natural, holistic or organic, or human grade foods and supplements, then why am I ruining all the good that I’m trying to put in his body by poisoning him with all these chemicals in the flea, tick and heartworm preventatives? Does this make sense?

Two months ago, I stopped giving my dogs the topical solutions known as (Frontline, Frontline Plus, Advantage, and Bio Spot), etc. I now treat them every morning with a homemade solution of lavender oil and water which I spray on them. It smells good; it’s convenient, less expensive and I know that I’m not poisoning any of my dogs.

What I also discovered in my research is that a healthy dog is one that these ugly “creepy crawlers” are not attracted to. They much more prefer the unhealthy, sickly or puppy skin than a dog that his healthy. It makes sense because in the wild, only the strong survive. According to these articles, if we feed our dogs a raw diet or a healthy mix of less grains and more meat we might see our dogs become healthier and not taste so good to “those insects.”

The animal lover is left with the question if I don’t treat my dog with these products, he might get infested with those little “buggers.” On the other hand, if I do treat him with these products will he become sick and develop cancers or other deliberating diseases? It leaves us confused and conflicted. Each of us must decide what is good for our animals because they look to us to protect and care for them. It makes me feel guilty each month when I hand them a tab of poison known as heartworm preventative. I pat them on the head and tell her she’s a good girl. All in the name of love! Hmmmmmmmmmm!

There are so many articles on the internet about this subject; way too much to write about here on this blog. I encourage all dog owners to do your own research and then TRY to make an educated decision about how to treat your pets. Their health and life depend upon it!

Prices for flea and tick preventatives: $15 right on up depending upon the size of the package and weight of the dog that you are treating.
Heartworm preventatives: $38 on up depending upon the size of the package and weight of the dog you are treating.

My rating: ingredients: (1), preventative (2), safety: (1), price (1)


  1. Do you have a healthy alternative for heartworm prevention?...I know the ones for the fleas and ticks including the lavandar, cedar, garlic, but I do not know any for heartworm?...

  2. I recommend you do a "Google" search like I just did when looking for an answer to your question. Put in your search window these words: healthy alternative for heartworm preventative. It will bring you many different websites with this information. Too much for me to list here, but lots of information for you. As I said in my article each pet owner has to make the decision what's best for their dog. We never know what is right, but we have to do something. Good luck!

  3. I just adopted a german shepherd rescue dog. This is great info. I am new as an adult pet owner and can use all the help I can get. Where do you spray the lavender and water on the dog? What you have said makes a whole lot of sense. Thanks

  4. Hi Loretta: Thanks for your comments. I put several drops of lavender oil in a spray bottle and mix it with water. Adjust the amount of drops you use by how large of a bottle of water you add it to. I spray their whole body avoiding the eyes and genitals. Usually a nice mist over the body and outside of the ears will do. I hope this works for you and your dog.