A guide to feline parasiticides


A guide to feline parasiticides

Mar 01, 2008
By dvm360.com staff

Editors' note: These product descriptions and the quick reference charts are summaries only.* Readers are responsible for reading and becoming familiar with the entire manufacturer's product label or package insert and are encouraged to do so. This product guide contains selected parasiticides intended to be available to pet owners primarily through licensed veterinarians in the United States. This product guide is not intended to be a complete listing of all parasiticides available to veterinarians and to the public.

Acarexx Otic Suspension

Acarexx Otic Suspension (Idexx Pharmaceuticals) contains 0.01% ivermectin to treat adult ear mite (Otodectes cynotis) infestations in cats and kittens 4 weeks of age or older. Efficacy against mite eggs and immature stages has not been proven. The safe use of Acarexx in breeding, pregnant, or lactating cats has not been evaluated. The product is applied topically into the external ear canal.


Advantage (Bayer Animal Health), a monthly topical, contains 9.1% imidacloprid. It prevents and treats flea infestations in cats and kittens 8 weeks of age and older, killing 98% to 100% of fleas within 12 hours. Larval flea stages in the cat's environment are killed after contact with a treated pet, and Advantage remains effective if an animal gets wet. Consultation with a veterinarian is required before use on medicated, debilitated, aged, pregnant, or nursing animals. It is available in two sizes for cats.

Advantage Multi for Cats

Advantage Multi for Cats (Bayer Animal Health) contains imidacloprid (10%) and moxidectin (1%). This monthly topical prevents heartworm disease caused by Dirofilaria immitis. It also kills adult fleas (Ctenocephalides felis) and treats and controls ear mite (Otodectes cynotis) infestations and hookworm (Ancylostoma tubaeforme) and roundworm (Toxocara cati) infections. Safe use of this product in breeding and pregnant animals has not been established. At the veterinarian's discretion, cats older than 6 months may be tested for existing heartworm infection before Advantage Multi treatment. No adverse reactions were associated with topical application of the product in experimentally heartworm-infected cats. Avoid oral ingestion. Do not use on sick, debilitated, or underweight cats. Do not allow children to contact the administration site for 30 minutes after application. Advantage Multi is available in three sizes for cats and kittens 9 weeks of age and older and that weigh at least 2 lb.


Capstar (Novartis Animal Health) tablets contain nitenpyram for oral administration based on body weight. The product can be used in kittens and cats 4 weeks and older and weighing at least 2 lb. It starts killing adult fleas within 30 minutes of administration and shows 90% effectiveness within six hours in cats. It does not have an effect on fleas in the environment and can be used with other flea products to prevent and control fleas. It is safe for pregnant or nursing queens. Cats may temporarily scratch in response to the fleas dying.


Cestex (Pfizer Animal Health) contains epsiprantel. It is a single-dose oral treatment to remove the tapeworms Dipylidium caninum and Taenia taeniaeformis. Cestex should not be used in kittens less than 7 weeks of age. The safety of this product in breeding and pregnant animals has not been determined. It comes in two tablet sizes for cats.


Droncit (Bayer Animal Health) contains praziquantel and is available in tablet and injectable forms. It is used to remove the tapeworms Dipylidium caninum and Taenia taeniaeformis in cats. The injectable solution can be given subcutaneously or intramuscularly. Droncit has been tested in breeding and pregnant cats, and no adverse effects were noted. It is not intended for use in kittens less than 6 weeks old.


Drontal (Bayer Animal Health) tablets contain praziquantel and pyrantel pamoate. It is used to remove the tapeworms Dipylidium caninum and Taenia taeniaeformis, the hookworms Ancylostoma tubaeforme, and the roundworms Toxocara cati. Do not use in kittens less than 1 month old or weighing less than 1.5 lb. Consultation with a veterinarian is required before use in sick or pregnant animals.

*Sources: Manufacturer product labels or package inserts, manufacturer Web sites, Companion Animal Parasite Council tables (www.capcvet.org), and the Compendium of Veterinary Products Drug Label Database (North American Compendiums) accessed online through the Veterinary Information Network (www.vin.com) and the American Veterinary Medical Association (www.avma.org).