Is it Safe to Use Cat Flea Medicine on a Dog?

Cat flea medicine comes under a variety of names and methods of administration. Some are a pill you need to get your cat to swallow. Others are a liquid she needs to drink. Still others are a lotion or liquid that needs to be rubbed into their skin. This article discusses what kind of cat flea products can work for dogs.

Capstar Flea Treatment by Novartis

Novartis makes a flea and tick treatment they call Capstar that comes in different dosages for different size pets. This product is orally administered once a day, as needed, and advertises that it kills fleas within a maximum of six hours on both cats and dogs. The active ingredient in Capstar is Nitenpyram, which has been shown to be safe for both cats and dogs. This product is available in different colored boxes which pertain to different sizes of pets.

Generic Nitenpyram Flea Killer Capsules

This is the same active ingredient as found in the name brand products, with the only major difference being the lower cost. Effectiveness is the same as with the name brand products. This product is available in a variety of dose levels. In order to choose the correct dosage level, you will need to know your pet’s weight.

Advantage Flea Treatments for Cats Likely Ineffective for Dogs

Advantage is a product that is much more species and size specific. The formulations and doses available with the Advantage product are such that the product available for cats will most likely not be effective if applied to your dog. This product is non-toxic and has a bitter taste, which means that it shouldn’t be harmful if applied to your dog; it probably just won’t be effective.

Flea and Tick Control Supplements

There are a number of multi-benefit supplements available that are made for use on both cats and dogs that will combat fleas naturally. Yeast and garlic have been shown to be very effective in driving fleas and ticks off of the host organism, in this case, you cat or dog. Since these products are designed for both cats and dogs, you can buy a single bottle and give them to both of your pets. Some of the available brand names of yeast and garlic supplements are NaturVet and PetGuard, as well as generic store branded lines of supplements.

Limited Efficacy of Feline Products When Used on Canines

Normally, cats are much smaller than dogs. This means that the main worry when using a product meant for feline use isn’t necessarily going to be is it safe for use on your dog, but will it work. A product that comes in a pre-packaged dosage for an animal that is under nine pounds won’t do much good on an animal that is over twenty pounds and will do next to nothing for an animal over thirty pounds.

Most feline flea and tick medications can be given to both your dog and cat. However, to be safe, you should consult your veterinarian to make sure.