Merck Animal Health Introduces BRAVECTO® Cares to Show Support for the Health of Service Dogs

Sponsorship of NEADS World Class Service Dogs Underscores the Importance of Keeping Pets Protected from Fleas and Ticks

MADISON, N.J., May 21, 2019 – Merck Animal Health, a division of Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, N.J., USA, and NEADS World Class Service Dogs today announced the launch of BRAVECTO® Cares, an educational campaign showcasing the critical role that service dogs play and the importance of keeping them healthy, including protecting them from fleas and ticks. As part of the campaign initiative, Merck Animal Health, the makers of BRAVECTOi —a longer-lasting flea and tick protective chew medication—will help NEADS support its mission with funding for dogs in training.

“Merck Animal Health knows how important it is to protect our pets – especially those that work for us,” said Mark Pelham, DVM, Companion Animal Professional Services, Merck Animal Health. “More than just a nuisance, fleas and ticks can carry illness, such as Lyme disease, to our pets and our families. We are proud to collaborate with NEADS, an organization which shares our dedication to keeping pets healthy as part of their extensive service dog training program.”

For NEADS, the health of their dogs is crucial. Along with training and temperament, healthcare is one of the three key elements in the making of a world class service dog. This includes everything from routine exams to adequate exercise and hygiene to keeping the dogs free from health issues like fleas and ticks.

“The health of our dogs is as important as their task training – if they are not at optimal health, they will not be at ideal performance and can potentially put their handlers at risk,” said Cathy Zemaitis, NEADS Director of Development. “To keep our dogs healthy and free from fleas, ticks and the diseases that they can carry, we use BRAVECTO and recommend our clients do the same.”

The campaign features Ryan DeRoche and his NEADS service dog, Oliver. Several years ago, DeRoche was in a mountain bike accident that resulted in a severe spinal cord injury and left him with little to no use of his arms and legs. Through NEADS, Ryan was matched with Oliver, and they have been a powerful team ever since.

“If Oliver isn’t at his best, it could definitely put me in danger – which is why I make it a point to keep him healthy any way that I can,” said DeRoche. “We are outside a lot, which can put him in contact with fleas and ticks, so I use the medication recommended to me by the veterinary professionals at NEADS to protect him.”

Merck Animal Health is sponsoring a sweepstakes* where 50 winners will receive a one-year subscription to a monthly pet care box with toys and treats for their pets. For more information on NEADS and the BRAVECTO Cares program, official rules and to enter the sweepstakes, visit

*No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited

About NEADSNEADS Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization located in Princeton, Massachusetts. Established in 1976, NEADS offers the widest array of Service Dog programs in the industry, including Service Dogs for adults and children with a physical disability, Service Dogs for veterans, Service Dogs for people who are deaf or hearing impaired, and Service Dogs for children with autism or other developmental disabilities. NEADS dogs are also partnered with professionals in classroom, therapy, hospital, ministry, and courthouse settings. For more information, please visit

About BRAVECTO® (fluralaner)Since its introduction in 2014, BRAVECTO® has provided longer-lasting flea and tick protection, with more than 100 million doses distributed in 85 countries over five years. BRAVECTO is available in a variety of formulations, including products for both dogs and cats. The flea lifecycle can last as long as 12 weeks, and monthly treatments may leave gaps in protection. One treatment with BRAVECTO lasts 12 weeks — almost three times the re-dosing interval of monthly treatments – and is proven to kill fleas on dogs and cats and to eliminate them from the home.ii Providing pets with continuous flea and tick protection is essential – whether the pet goes outside or not. Contrary to popular belief among pet parents, fleas and ticks are not only active in the spring and summer months and are a year-round risk. Fleas and ticks can easily latch onto dogs and cats, and can spread serious diseases, including tapeworms and Lyme disease. They also can bite and pose health risks to human family members whether at home or outdoors. Fleas are the most common external parasite found on pets.

BRAVECTO products are only available through licensed veterinarians. BRAVECTO has not been shown to be effective for 12-weeks’ duration in puppies or kittens less than 6 months of age. BRAVECTO Chew: The most common adverse reactions recorded in clinical trials were vomiting, decreased appetite, diarrhea, lethargy, polydipsia, and flatulence. BRAVECTO is not effective against lone star ticks beyond 8 weeks of dosing. BRAVECTO Topical for Dogs: The most common adverse reactions recorded in clinical trials were vomiting, hair loss, diarrhea, lethargy, decreased appetite, and moist dermatitis/rash. BRAVECTO is not effective against lone star ticks beyond 8 weeks of dosing. For topical use only. Avoid oral ingestion. Use caution in dogs with a history of seizures. Seizures have been reported in dogs receiving fluralaner, even in dogs without a history of seizures.

About Merck Animal Health

For more than a century, Merck, a leading global biopharmaceutical company, has been inventing for life, bringing forward medicines and vaccines for many of the world’s most challenging diseases. Merck Animal Health, a division of Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, N.J., USA, is the global animal health business unit of Merck. Through its commitment to the Science of Healthier Animals®, Merck Animal Health offers veterinarians, farmers, pet owners and governments one of the widest ranges of veterinary pharmaceuticals, vaccines and health management solutions and services as well as an extensive suite of digitally connected identification, traceability and monitoring products. Merck Animal Health is dedicated to preserving and improving the health, well-being and performance of animals and the people who care for them. It invests extensively in dynamic and comprehensive R&D resources and a modern, global supply chain. Merck Animal Health is present in more than 50 countries, while its products are available in some 150 markets. For more information, visit or connect with us on LinkedInFacebook, and Twitter at @MerckAH.
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i: Caution: Federal (USA) law restricts these drugs to use by or on the order of a licensed veterinarian.

iiWilliams et al. Fluralaner, a novel isoxazoline, prevents flea (Ctenocephalides felis) reproduction in vitro and in a simulated home environment. Parasites & Vectors (2014) 7:275.