Click this link for the previous article in our Hartz “Executive Summary” exposé: Dr. Charles T. Gaskins, Dr. Melinda Fernyhough and a Little Thing Called Conflict of Interest
Over the years, one of the most common arguments you’d hear Hartz make is that of consumer misuse of their products.
Hartz has continually attempted to shift blame for the deaths of these beloved animals onto pet owners. Essentially, Hartz claims consumers are just too stupid to use their products properly, adding insult to overwhelming injury. These unfortunate individuals loved their pets like family and the only mistake they made with the Hartz product was buying it in the first place.
Of course, its no surprise Hartz tried to make a false-use argument in their “Executive Summary” document.
(Hartz’ Executive Summary of EPA Review of Pet Spot-On Incidents, Page 1, Bulleted Section 1, Bullet 3)
“In cats, an important problem was the application on cats of products labeled for dogs.”
Not only was this irrelevant to our affiliate’s case, we think a more important point in this particular problem can be made by referencing the EPA’s DATA EVALUATION RECORD FOR ENHANCED SPOT-ON REPORTING DOG PRODUCT for the Hartz UltraGuard™ Flea & Tick Drops for Dogs and Puppies (EPA Registration Number 2596-151):
(EPA DATA EVALUATION RECORD FOR ENHANCED SPOT-ON REPORTING DOG PRODUCT: 2596-151, Page 2, Paragraph 8, Sentence 4)
“It appears from the available information that 5 of the incidents reported for 2008 involved a discontinued product that was labeled for use on cats or kittens: however, the other four incidents could be as a result of misuse.”
The discontinued version of Hartz’ 2596-151 product was supposed to be removed from distribution by March 31, 2006; but it was still on store shelves and killing animals two years later. If Hartz and their distributors would do a better job of keeping discontinued dog product that is improperly labeled for use on cats and kittens off shelves, it would go far in alleviating this very dangerous issue.
This expired product revelation prompted our affiliate to further research the product, purchased from Rite Aid, bearing EPA Registration Number 2596-147. It was discovered this product has had many issues throughout its history, including a possible packaging mix-up in late 1999. The EPA reported on this in its “Review of Incident Data for Four Hartz Mountain Flea and Tick Control Products (2596-146, -147, -148 and -150)”
In this report, the EPA states:
(EPA Review of Incident Data for Four Hartz Mountain Flea and Tick Control Products (2596-146, -147, -148 and -150, Page 3, Paragraph 4)
“There was some evidence of possible packaging mix-up in the incident data. Based on internal communication, it is possible that the dog product 2596-146 was accidently [sic] placed into packaging for the cat product 2596-147.”
The EPA cites one of the many internal email messages between Hartz personnel in regards to this possible packaging mix-up:
(EPA Review of Incident Data for Four Hartz Mountain Flea and Tick Control Products (2596-146, -147, -148 and -150, Page 14, Paragraph 3 [This is from an internal Hartz’ email])
“On Tuesday 12/7/99 at 9:35am the One Spot packaging line changed over from Cat One Spot 97557 to One Spot f/Dogs<15lbs. 97835. It appears that an improper line clearance was performed (line clearance procedure went into effect June of ’99) resulting in the product coming onto the line (97835) while packaging materials for 97557 were still in the machines.”
In page 15 of this same document, the EPA declares both Companion Animal Safety Studies submitted by Hartz for 2596-147, as well as the Companion Animal Safety Study for 2596-148 to have been unacceptable.
As usual, more to come.
Click this link for the next article in our Hartz “Executive Summary” exposé: Let’s Get “Technical”