Letters to dvm360: Column on natural vs. prescription parasite prevention misses key points

October 16, 2018

Not surprisingly, a Marc Rosenberg column about two veterinarians disagreeing over the best way to prevent fleas and ticks in veterinary patients has inspired more debate.

Editor's note: Both of these letters are in response to Dr. Marc Rosenberg's column “Prescription vs. natural: A clash over parasite products.”

I believe that “natural” products are usually a sales pitch. Clients don't realize that these often have no research to prove the products work. They also need to know that even natural ingredients can be toxic to their pets.

I have concern about the veterinarian claiming that FDA-approved products killed some of her pets. Did she have necropsies performed to prove their cause of death? That is the biggest question I need answered before I start looking further into her stories.

Jody Jones, DVM

Lincoln, Nebraska


In reading this article, I have found an interesting double standard:

Dr. Palm is facing criticism and censure for recommending all-natural flea and tick prevention without adequately educating the client about all the available options. And yet, didn't Dr. Kline do exactly the same thing by recommending prescription products without educating his client about natural alternatives-particularly considering that only after receiving pushback does Dr. Kline later say he would provide a recommendation for a natural product?

The hypocrisy of the situation is a bit difficult for me to stomach. If practitioners who choose to advocate for natural treatments are expected to provide client education on traditional therapies and approaches, it seems to me that it is only fair to expect supporters of traditional practices to provide the same level of client education regarding natural therapies. We either want our clients fully educated to make their own decisions, or we want them just educated on our one point of view so they make the decision we support.

I'm sorry, but the latter does not sound like “informed consent” to me.

Anne Taylor, DVM, CCRT

Davenport, Iowa