Toxic Pesticides in Certain Flea and Tick Control Products
- Hands, clothing, carpets and floors may be exposed to pet flea control products. Scientific studies indicate that chemicals from indoor flea control (including spot-ons, collars, sprays, and foggers) can wipe off on your hands, clothing, and furniture and travel throughout your home, even if gloves are worn during application. Washing results in the discharge of these pesticides into the sewer system.
- Contrary to manufacturer labels, spot-on products wash off during bathing. Washing a pet can lead to pesticide discharges to the sewer.
- The California Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) is currently reviewing uses of fipronil and imidacloprid due to possible human health risks. These are active ingredients of several commonly used spot-on topical treatments.
- Spot-on topical treatments only reach about 5% of the flea cycle in your home. It is estimated that adult fleas only account for 5% of the total flea population! The bigger problems are their eggs, larvae and pupae laying around your home.
- Flea treatment products have been found in wastewater, sometimes at concentrations that are toxic to sensitive aquatic species. These pesticides make their way from indoor home drains to the wastewater collection system, and ultimately end up in our creeks, rivers, lakes, estuaries, and the San Francisco Bay, because wastewater treatment plants aren’t capable of fully removing these toxic chemicals. Fipronil and imidacloprid, chemicals commonly found in flea and tick spot treatments, have been found in urban runoff and undiluted wastewater effluent, sometimes at concentrations above toxicity thresholds for sensitive aquatic species.