Most of us know how dangerous it can be for a cat to accidentally ingest our medications.
What most of us are not aware of is the danger posed by topical prescription ointments and pain relief creams. Contact between cats and owners can expose the animals to fatal doses of medication.
That’s what happened in two households, according to a report issued Friday by the Food and Drug Administration. Two cats in one household developed kidney failure and recovered with attention from a veterinarian. But in a second household, three cats died.
The cats died by flurbiprofen, another NSAID (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug). The cat owner applied a lotion or cream containing flurbiprofen to treat muscle or arthritis pain.
None of the owners applied the medications to their cats. The owners rubbed the product on their own necks or feet, exposing the animals. Cats rub against you, then lick your stink off of them, ingesting anything on your skin in the process.
The FDA recommends that pet owners store all medications away from pets and to discard anything used to apply the medication. If any furniture or carpeting becomes contaminated, clean it immediately.
And keep an eye on those pets – if they show signs of lethargy, vomiting or lack of appetite, go see a vet immediately.