(for veterinary information only)
BRAND NAME: PROGRAM and included in SENTINEL
The U.S. market had been long in search of a flea product that was safe, convenient, and effective and many companies were racing to bring out their new product first. Ciba Animal Health (now renamed Novartis Animal Health) won this battle in 1995 with the approval of lufenuron for use in U.S. pets. Their product had already been in use for 5 years in some 35 other countries and the U.S. welcomed this product with open arms. This medication was first licensed as a prescription drug, meaning that an animal had to have a legal patient/doctor relationship with the veterinarian in order to obtain it; however, in January of 1997, lufenuron gained over-the-counter status. In April 1998, an injectable form became available for cats.
Novartis Animal Health feels strongly that in order to use lufenuron effectively some understanding of how it works is needed, thus they will only distribute their product through licensed veterinarians so that proper education to pet owners can be provided. Lufenuron does not kill fleas so unless one understands how this product works, one may be dissatisfied if expected results are not realized. In Sentinel® and Sentinel Spectrum®, lufenuron is combined with milbemcyin, a heartworm preventive and broad spectrum dewormer. These products are available by prescription only.
HOW THIS MEDICATION WORKS
Oral lufenuron must be given on a full stomach in order to be properly absorbed into the body.
Since lufenuron works on enzymes systems that are unique to insects, no other side effects have been reported even in animals fed hundreds of times the recommended dose.
INTERACTIONS WITH OTHER DRUGS
Program does not interact with other medications. Program is therefore compatible with all other treatments.
It is important to note that with the advent of popular top-spot and oral treatments for fleas, special attention should be paid to the development of resistance to these products. Experience with other insects tells us that resistance can develop in 12 to 15 generations. In order to preserve these new insecticides, it is important to consider what is called integrated pest management. What this means is that insecticides should be rotated or combined with insect development inhibitors such as lufenuron or insect growth regulators like methoprene. Fleas that are resistant to the top-spot treatments must not be allowed to pass on their genes for resistance. Lufenuron may be used in combination with any of the popular effective topicals or oral products to achieve this end.
To see a comparison of popular effective topical flea products click here.
CONCERNS AND CAUTIONS
In order for lufenuron to work, fleas must bite the pet, potentially a problem for the flea allergic pet. For pets with flea bite allergy, lufenuron would best be combined with a product that actually kills fleas. There is at present no flea product that can kill fleas before they bite.
Oral lufenuron must be given on a full stomach. Each oral dose lasts 30 days.
Kittens must be at least 6 weeks of age and puppies must be at least 4 weeks of age to begin taking lufenuron.
Page last updated: 10/1/2015