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Critical Reasoning: Paradox Questions

A veterinary pharmaceutical manufacturer implemented a business strategy to encourage sales by creating a product that could be legally sold over the counter, without the need for a prescription from a veterinarian. The product was a collar for cats intended as a repellent against fleas that, through biting the host animal's epidermis, would die after ingesting some of its blood. Despite the advantage of not having to consult a veterinarian in order to buy one, the collar was not successful commercially.

Which of the following, if true, does the most to explain why the manufacturer's strategy failed to achieve its objective? 

Incorrect.

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This answer choice is basically a description of how the product works, with the last part of the sentence putting the product in a very positive light. We're supposed to be explaining why the product did not sell well. Saying how good it is cannot help us do this, and in fact emphasizes the paradox.

Incorrect.

[[snippet]]

This answer choice does not affect the paradox in any way. Since we do not know anything about the packaging of the product in question - whether it has a vet's recommendation printed on it or not - we can't use this statement to clarify the apparent paradox.

The product's "special" strategy is the fact that customers who wish to buy it do not need the approval (prescription) of a veterinarian, so the correct answer should focus on why this failed.

Incorrect.

[[snippet]]

This statement cannot explain the product's failure because it does not refer to overall sales but to fluctuations (ups and downs) in sales over the course of a year. Even if sales of such products do decrease during certain months, the product in question was considered a commercial failure overall. Also, we have no reason to believe the product was released in the winter or autumn.

Incorrect.

[[snippet]]

This statement is a logical tip for pet owners. Unfortunately, it has nothing to do with why the product in question did not succeed. For this answer choice to explain the paradox, we would have to assume that most pet owners shared this view, and lived by it, accepting only prescription medication for their pets. However, that is not given as data in the argument. 

Incredible!

[[snippet]]

This answer choice presents a logical explanation as to why the product failed. If the law states that non-prescription products can only use small amounts of an active ingredient, then it follows that the product only used a small amount of propuxer. However, since this chemical is what actually makes such products work, then the new flea collar was probably relatively inefficient. This inefficiency led to the product's failure.

Although the collar was only to be worn externally, its chemical components, through constant contact with the animal's skin, would be absorbed into the bloodstream, not only killing newly-attached fleas, but also ceasing the reproductive cycle of already present fleas and eggs.
It has been proven that pet products with recommendations made by veterinarians printed on their packaging sell far more successfully than those that do not have such recommendations printed on their packaging.
The sales of flea collars and other repellents used to maintain pet health are greatly affected by the changes of season, usually very low during the winter and autumn months of the year, rising with the beginning of spring.
To be able to sell non-prescription products with active ingredients such as propuxer, the chemical used in anti-pest products, legislation requires that manufacturers limit the presence of the active ingredient.
Consultation with a professional veterinarian is always advisable when confronting an issue regarding an animal's health since even someone with a fair amount of medical knowledge may not be aware of illnesses or ailments associated with a specific animal.