1 May No Comments admin From the Doctors, Pet Health, Pet Safety

fdalogo1Do you use a topical pain medication that contains the non steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) flurbiprofen on your sore joints and muscles? If so, the FDA wants to warn you that it may be harmful and even fatal to your pets.

This type of medication is usually found in creams or lotions that are prescribed for use by humans and are used to treat muscle, joint, or other pain. The FDA has gotten reports of cats in two households that became sick or died after their owners used this type of medication. In both cases, the owners applied the medication to their own feet or neck and not directly to the pet. Somehow, unfortunately, the cats became exposed to the medication anyway.

Two cats in one of the reports developed kidney failure. Luckily, this problem was diagnosed and treated early enough by their veterinarian that they were able to recover. Two cats in the other household developed troubling symptoms like a reluctance to eat, lethargy, vomiting, bloody stools, anemia and dilute urine. Sadly, these two cats did not recover and died, despite receiving veterinary care. A third cat from the same household also died, even after the owner had stopped using the medication. The veterinarian found evidence in the kidneys and intestines of all three cats that was consistent with NSAID toxicity.

Though the FDA has only received reports regarding cats, it warns that dogs and other species may also be vulnerable to NSAID toxicity from this type of medication.

If you use a medicine with this ingredient in it, please take extraordinary care to make sure that your pets never come into contact with it.

  • Always store your medication in a safe place that cannot be reached by your pets.
  • Always discard or thoroughly clean any cloth that may have traces of your medication. Do not allow that cloth to touch clothing, carpet or furniture, as it may transfer some residue of the medication onto them.
  • If your pet does become exposed to your medication, immediately bathe them as thoroughly as possible and consult your vet.
  • Be on the lookout for symptoms such as lethargy, lack of appetite, vomiting or any other type of illness. If you notice one of these symptoms in your pet, consult your vet right away.

Stay safe out there!