To be honest, we really don’t know what happened to Feralstat. What we do know is that the FDA did NOT pull Feralstat off the market. The “inventor” of Feralstat, Dr. John Caltabiano, DVM, passed away from complications of cancer in November of 2009.
Feralstat was still sold to the public even after Dr. Caltabiano’s passing. The first instance of Feralstat not being available for sale was around late July or early August of 2011.
After that time, rumors circulated that the FDA had pulled it off the market. After thorough research, we can find absolutely zero evidence of the FDA pulling it off the market.
As we already stated, Feralstat was a mixture of megestrol acetate, lactose powder, and an ordinary food dye.
Megestrol Acetate is a synthetic progestin that was patented and FDA approved in the early 1950’s. It is used extensively in human medicine, and has been prescribed for over 30 years for cats with skin, urinary tract, and behavioral disorders such as territorial marking & improper urination outside of the litter box. Megestrol acetate has been used extensively by cat fancy breeders for years. A 1991 article in Cat Fancy magazine about MA can be found HERE.
And contrary to what the ACC&D says, it also has approval for extra-label use as a feline oral contraceptive to postpone estrus in cats.
When it was available, a customer would call up the Feralstat office and consult with a licensed veterinarian. The customer would give the doctor the number of cats that were in the colony. The doctor would then determine the proper dosage of Feralstat necessary for the size of the colony and would then prescribe Feralstat.
The Feralstat office was located in Connecticut. The actual medicine was compounded by WestLab Pharamacy out of Gainesville, FL. After paying with a credit card over the phone, your order would come from WestLab via mail within a few days.
The customer would receive a 3 months supply of Feralstat for about $69.00. This would treat up to about 80 cats, once a week. The feral caretaker would simply sprinkle one of the packets evenly over canned food and feed the feral colony once a week with the “doctored” food.
With proper dosing, the feral colony became healthier, and best of all, no more unwanted births. When used properly, there were NO ADVERSE SIDE EFFECTS!
We may never know what REALLY happened to Feralstat. Thankfully, with the dedication of the few people that stuck diligently with the Topix thread way back in 2011, we all have a SAFE & AFFORDABLE alternative to the original Feralstat.
Continue on to the pages of this site to learn how to obtain and safely mix your own feline birth control using megestrol acetate in place of Feralstat.