Leo was brought in by his family when they witnessed him shaking excessively and having muscle tremors. His owners said he had recently been given a flea and tick preventative and had been acting fine until later in the day. Our staff determined he was suffering from complications from a pyrethrin toxicity from the preventative.
Dogs are not sensitive to pyrethrin and many flea and tick products contain high doses of the substance. Cats, however, are unable to metabolize pyrethrin which makes them highly sensitive – and can cause death if not treated immediately. Clinical signs include excessive salivation, vomiting, difficultly with coordination (exhibiting an incoordination when walking, jumping, standing), twitching/tremors, seizure, and difficulty breathing.
Leo was hospitalized and treated with IV fluids and methocarbamol, a muscle relaxant to help ease the tremors and pain. He made a full recovery before being discharged.