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Dr. BJ Hughes
Dr. BJ Hughes, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 4794
Experience:  Licensed w/20 years of experience in private practice/teaching. Strong believer in educating owners.
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ARe the less expensive flea and tick meds (WalMart) brand as

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ARe the less expensive flea and tick meds (WalMart) brand as good as the more expensive brands. What is the least expensive flea and tick treatment?

Dr. BJ Hughes :

Hi there --

Dr. BJ Hughes :

Welcome to Just Answer.

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

Hi

Dr. BJ Hughes :

Which one are you currently using -- so I can give you a direct comparison -- ?

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

First Shield trio. WalMart has a brand, can't recall the name, that is about $3.00 per month and the same topical application. I did notice the ingredients were different.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

This product (First Sheild Trio) is a Banfield product -- made for them . Is is beneficial in that it control ticks, fleas,and mosquitos.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

The Walmart or generic or Hartz products are not approved and tested for all of these.

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

I don't mind the price, but would wonder if there is a less expensive product that does as much?

Dr. BJ Hughes :

I am looking at the ingredients list for both --

Dr. BJ Hughes :

Walmart has both Adams and HArtz products listed --

Dr. BJ Hughes :

Both of these contain permethrin -- which some dogs can be very senstive to ---

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

Any product that does as much effectively, that would cost less, would save me some money over time. Again, I do not want to skimp on quality.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

But the biggest factor is safety -- and I have personnally seen more reactions --local with scabbing, itching, and sores at the site of application....and systemic reactions to the level of permethrin or other ingredients resulting in liver and or kidney damage, coma, death.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

Banfield's product also contains permethrin -- what the levels are --

Dr. BJ Hughes :

for comparison.

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

The product I am using has 36.08%

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

First Shield

Dr. BJ Hughes :

The Hartz uses penothrin (a form of permethrin) at 85.7%. These are substantially different.

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

So, is there a brand that you recommend, that is less expensive?

Dr. BJ Hughes :

When it comes to flea and tick control -- think first what you need to control -- and also safety.

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

OK, that means what?

Dr. BJ Hughes :

My personal favorite is Frontline Plus -- cost has come down substantially -- and is availble at places other than vet office -- It is guaranteed --

Dr. BJ Hughes :

Extremely safe -- occasionally a local reaction where applied (but this happens with any topical application).

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

Thanks, XXXXX XXXXX it is less than the First Shield Trio. Does it also protect at the same level?

Dr. BJ Hughes :

Fipronil could literally be eaten in large qualtities without toxic side effects that are serious.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

Protection is on fleas and ticks -- not on mosquitos though --

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

Is that a concern? We do a lot of traveling.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

As it does not contain a permethrin -- which is where the mosquito protection comes from.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

Is your dog on heart worm preventative --

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

Yes, the treat form.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

very good -- this is the disease transmitted by mosquitos --

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

First Shield also.

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

So, I could go to Frontline without a problem?

Dr. BJ Hughes :

If the mosquito bites themselves are a problem then yo umay need ot use a product for control of mosquitos --

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

OK, may just stay with what I have. Thanks for the information.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

with the more dangerous permethrins --- another product similar to First Shield is Advantage plus (Bayer product)

Dr. BJ Hughes :

Also -- best to use frontline PLUS --

Dr. BJ Hughes :

not just Frontline.

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

OK, Frontline PLUS has what extra?

Dr. BJ Hughes :

First Shield is a vet only product, Frontline Plus and Advantage plus are either over the counter or vet products -- all are backed and guaranteed.

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

Would it ever be breneficial to change products from month to month, so that the same meds don't have the same intensity?

Dr. BJ Hughes :

Frontline plus is just the marketed name --

Dr. BJ Hughes :

More info on the product from Merial's site directly

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

Would it be beneficial for my pet to change products (chemicals) from month to month?

Dr. BJ Hughes :

Coupons there as well --

Dr. BJ Hughes :

As far as changing products --

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

Eg, Frontline Plus to First Shield Trio?

Dr. BJ Hughes :

How big of a problem do you have --? Do you see fleas -- or is this preventative?

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

Preventative, new dog to us from the pound, 13 lb long haird daschund

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

about 3 years old. Had a lot of dandruff, but is taking fish oil for that, it seems to be getting much better.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

There are some vets that have gone to switching products -- some every other month, some yearly. The reasoning is that there are some reports of resistance. I have personally not experienced this -- and have found if any of these products are used consistently, then there is not a problem. Problems with lfeas are found when a break in treatment / prevention is made.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

There may be something to this in some areas --

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

OK, thanks soo much for your input. I feel like I have a good answer.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

And there are another 6-7 products that coudl be discussed that are vet only products -- that are somparabel in price to Banfields.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

But Frontline, still has the safety record.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

You are most welcome ==

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

Now, can I ask you about dog food. Best for less?

Dr. BJ Hughes :

That is a very individualized question --- many people are wanting to use less byproducts and more meat in diets -- especially if there is any skin issue or allergy.

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

Are the cheap brands as good as the expensive brands. This is such an "emotional" issue.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

The big ones currently reccomended by many vets are Science diet, Eukanuba, and Royal canin -- but I also like Blue buffalo (more meat) and Innova --

Dr. BJ Hughes :

AVOID the generic brands -- you will see changes in skin and digestive health -- and longevity -- as well as an increase in stools.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

A medium grade food such a purina is not so bad --- but can still lead to a a lesser form of all of the issues with generic.

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

Thanks, XXXXX XXXXX from science diet to one based on potatoes rather than corn because of her dandruff. I don't know if it was the food or the fish oil, but she is improved.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

It is a matter of what goes into the food and quality of ingredients -- there are sooooo many opinions in this area that it can get very sticky to choose one over another. But there is more to it than emotional issues when it comes to diet.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

Could be both -- and this is commonly seen .

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

OK, and thanks. YOu have been honest with me and that is what I wanted. I did not want someone to push their brand.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

No problem -- and I am not paid by any company to represent a product .

Dr. BJ Hughes :

You are most welcome.

JACUSTOMER-8qmeugt1- :

Good and thanks, XXXXX XXXXX ask your advice again.

Dr. BJ Hughes :

I hope this information helps! Yes -- you can request any one of us by including our name in the subject line.
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The above is given for information only. Although I am a licensed veterinarian, I cannot legally prescribe medicines or diagnose your pet's condition without performing a physical exam. If you have concerns about your pet I would highly advise contacting your regular veterinarian

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