Researchers used dogs to test cream for skin cancer, and this cream proved to be crucial for them. According to the US Food and Drug Administration, five dogs have lost their lives after they were exposed to cream meant to treat skin cancer prescribed for people. FDA stated that if family pets reach to ingest small amounts of this cream, it could be damaging to their health. The drug is called the fluorouracil topical cream USP 5%.
The agency claimed that even if they did not receive any reports regarding other pets, like cats, they might also be as sensitive as dogs proved to be to fluorouracil cream. This particular drug is also available on the market under brand names like Fluoroplex, Efudex, and Carac. Based on the data revealed by the American Cancer Society, the cream is used to treat precancerous skin damaged by the sun, but also basal cell skin cancers.
In one situation, a dog had barely touched the tube of cream with its mouth before its owner grabbed it and the poor pet died 12 hours later, after experiencing seizures and vomiting. Another dog had swallowed the whole content of a cream tube. Even if the owner brought the dog to the vet as quickly as possible, the treatment was not successful. Three days later the dog needed to be euthanized.
Cats, which usually tend to eat almost everything they find, can be intoxicated in another way. If you apply the cream on your skin and then accidently touch your cat without washing your hands first, then the cat may ingest the cream on her fur when grooming. The FDA had issued some advice for those who use the cream, and they also own pets.
When using fluorouracil cream, you need to be sure you stored it together with other toxic substances, away from your pet to make sure your dog or cat stays safe. You also need to clean any cloth or applicator used to spread the cream on the skin. It is important to not let any trace of the medication on the carpet, furniture, your clothes or your hands. If your pet is eventually exposed to this drug, you need to contact a veterinarian as soon as possible.
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