Georgia pet owners call proposed $15 million flea collar settlement ‘an insult’

ATLANTA — There are more than 100,000 complaints about dogs and cats getting sick after using Seresto flea and tick collars.

Now if you bought one, you could be getting some money back.

It’s all part of a proposed settlement to end a class action lawsuit involving Seresto flea and tick collars.

But some Georgia pet owners are calling the settlement “an insult.”


“It was just a mere slap in the face to me,” Tammy Shugart said.

She was talking about the proposed $15 million class action lawsuit settlement with Bayer and Elanco who bought Seresto flea and tick collars from Bayer in 2020.

Channel 2 Action News first told you how Shugart’s little chihuahua “Mr. Jones” went blind in April 2022.

“He got really sick after I put this collar around him in the fall. He started having problems with his salivary glands, and then problems with his eyes,” Shugart told us in 2022.

Mickey Hearn recorded a video of what happened to her dog Buddy after she put a Seresto collar on him.

“The whole area was covered with dried puss,” she said in the video.

Hearn is also disappointed with the proposed settlement.

It would pay out $13 for each Seresto collar purchased with receipts or a maximum of $26 without them.

Pet owners would receive $25 per pet for medical treatment or 100% of medical treatment costs not reimbursed with documentation.

The settlement calls for paying out $300 per pet death plus burial or cremation costs.

“The settlement is equivalent to a parking ticket, you know, a $15 million settlement with a company that’s making half a billion dollars a year on a product is not a punishment to them,” Hearn said.


The EPA received more than 100,000 incident reports including more than 2,500 pet deaths involving Seresto collars.

Elanco sent us this statement:

“Although Elanco vigorously disputes liability, it agreed to the settlement to avoid the costs and risks associated with continuing this case. Veterinarians and pet owners can continue to remain confident in Seresto. Years of robust scientific evidence and broad use of more than 110 million collars around the world affirm Seresto’s safety profile. Additionally, the EPA’s comprehensive, multi-year review confirmed that Seresto continues to meet EPA standards for product registration.

“Since launch in 2013, more than 41 million Seresto collars have been sold in the U.S. Over this period, the reporting rate for all incidents related to Seresto has been low and trending downward.

“In 2022, the estimated incidence of adverse events in the U.S. following exposure to Seresto was approximately 0.116%, which equates to approximately 1 animal with a reported adverse event for every 1,000 collars distributed in the U.S. The vast majority of these reports relate to non-serious events such as itching or redness localized at the collar application site. All available data supports the safety profile of Seresto.”

Both Shugart and Hearn said they don’t plan to file any claims.

“$300 per death of your cat, you couldn’t write me a check for $3 million for my pet,” Hearn said.

The EPA studied the complaints and told Elanco to add a warning label to Seresto collars.

You can submit a claim online. The deadline to file is July 23, 2024.

A judge is expected to hold a final hearing to approve the settlement on Dec. 4, 2024.