Revolution for Cats

Cat scratching an itch

Revolution® is the first FDA-approved, topical parasite control product of its kind for cats. It controls six major pests to make cats healthier and more comfortable - indoors or outside.

Parasites Revolution Controls

According to the Revolution website, this product kills adult fleas and prevents their eggs from hatching for about one month. The product is recommended only for cats over eight weeks of age, but it is safe to use on pregnant and lactating cats. It is suggested that the product be applied once a month to give your cat continued protection from:

Where to Purchase

You will need a prescription from your veterinarian to purchase Revolution. Most veterinary offices keep the product in stock, so you should be able to purchase it directly from your local vet's office. It's a good idea to work with your veterinarian the first time you treat your cat with a new product, and watch closely for any side effects. Once you determine the product's safety and effectiveness for your pet, you may want to shop around for the best price. If you prefer to order online, you can use your prescription to order from one of the following sources.

How Revolution Works

Active Ingredient

According to the product overview, the active ingredient in Revolution is Selamectin. It is known as a "macrocyclic lactone compound." The substance is known to prevent the development of heartworm when it is given within a month of exposure to the Dirofilaria immitis larvae. When Revolution is applied to a cat's skin, the selemectin enters the bloodstream. it will then relocate within the body to protect the feline from heartworm and other parasites.

For example:

  • Fleas and mites: Selamectin travels from the bloodstream to the skin to treat adult flea infestations.
  • Worms: These parasites are killed when they feed on the animal's blood and ingest the active ingredient.

Applying the Product on Your Pet

The directions indicate that an owner should:

  1. Locate a spot directly at the back of the cat's neck just above the shoulders.
  2. Part the fur.
  3. Squeeze the entire tube directly on one spot.

The correct dosage, based on each cat's weight, can be found in a table on the Revolution website under the Administration directions.

Possible Side Effects

In the same product overview, the manufacturer claims side effects are rare and offers the following facts.

  • Less than one percent of cats experience digestive upset.
  • About one percent of felines also had hair loss at the site where the medication was applied, but the loss was temporary.

The warnings on the product itself indicate that some pets may experience the following side effects, but that these issues are temporary and usually occur immediately after application.

  • Stiff or clumping fur
  • Slight discoloration
  • Powdery residue

According to, the product was tested on six-week-old kittens in dosages of up to 10 times the normal dose. Even at the highest dosage tested, no adverse reactions were noted in the studies. This extreme dosage was given for testing purposes only. You should always follow package instructions for how much to administer to your cat. If you are uncertain of the correct dosage, it is best to consult with a veterinarian.


Make sure that you only use Revolution formulated for cats on your feline friend. Using a similar product for dogs could produce a toxic reaction in a cat. Pfizer, the maker of Revolution, offers a number of suggestions to help avoid unwanted side effects and ensure that the medication is as effective as possible. A few of these warnings include:

  • Make sure the entire contents of the tube is emptied.
  • Do not administer more frequently than once a month.
  • Do not skip months because your cat will be unprotected from parasites.
  • Do not apply to skin that is irritated or has an open wound.
  • Do not apply if the cat's fur is wet.

If you miss a dose, apply as soon as you when you remember. Do not give a double dose. Never apply two different kinds of preventative at the same time.

All Cats Can Benefit from Protection

Some owners may believe that their pets don't need protection from fleas, mosquitos and other pests because they keep their cats indoors. However, parasites can make their way into homes and infest pets. According to, about 28 percent of cats diagnosed with heartworm in a North Carolina study were indoor only cats. So in the long run, it may be best to err on the side of prevention rather than wait for your pet to develop a problem. Ask your vet for advice.

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Revolution for Cats