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Be Cautious When Purchasing On-Line Medications For Your Pet

Updated on July 25, 2011

When purchasing on-line pet medications, we want to be just as cautious as when we are purchasing medications for ourselves or for our families. Keeping your pets healthy, by using only the best medications, will, in the long run, keep down vet bills and thus save us money.

There are many safe on-line sites for purchasing pet medications. This goes without saying, but when you are looking for medications on line, take your time. Your pets' health and even their lives, are in your hands.

Some medication you will find on-line are not what they are advertised to be. The medication may look the same and the lower prices may appeal to you, but you may not be getting what is advertised. Some of these medications may be improperly measured, improperly stored, out of date, or contain toxic substances. In addition, after you have not helped your pets, or have even harmed them, you may find the distributor is unreachable and so is your cash.

When your pets need medications, it is always wise to discuss options with your veterinarian. Your veterinarian knows your pet and whether or not they need medications. Unfortunately these medications are often expensive. Understanding veterinarians will be willing to work with you to get safe medications to treat your pet. Ask him/her if these can be purchased on-line for less? Would he/she suggest a reliable site? Some veterinarians may be reluctant or even outright unwilling to do so, as they do not want to accept such a responsibility.

If you are on your own finding a site, consider the following safety precautions.

1. Make sure any site you choose has a licensed pharmacist available to answer any questions you may have.

2. Only consider a site that lists a physical location, including a phone number. Make sure the phone number is in service.

3. You will of course choose a site that has cheaper medication than veterinarians do, but avoid any site where the medications are significantly lower. Excessively low prices are a real danger sign.

4. Avoid all foreign sites. If the site you choose is within the continental United States, then they are reachable and can be held responsible. This is not true of foreign sites.

5. Look carefully at the wrapping and the labeling of the medications you receive. It they vary significantly from the ones you see at your veterinarians, return them immediately. Never give you pets anything that makes you suspicious.

6. All pharmacist must have a state license to practice. Check the license of the on-line pharmacist to make sure it is authentic.

7. Only order pet medications prescribed by a veterinarian. Any site that will deliver medications with no prescription is disreputable and must be avoided.

8. If your pet has a bad reaction to any on-line medications, contact your veterinarian immediately. Also contact the food and drug administration. They have a department that deals with food and drug issues associated with pet-based products.

We can never assume that any pet medications are as safe as those prescribed and sold by our veterinarian. If you decide to purchase on-line pet medications, take all possible precautions to make sure you are not putting your pets in danger.


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    • billips profile image

      billips 5 years ago from Central Texas

      Thank you for reading and commenting Paulart - your attention is appreciated - B.

    • Paulart profile image

      Paulart 5 years ago from 2510 Warren Avenue Cheyenne,Wyoming 82001

      Very nice information is given on hub regarding purchasing online medication for pets.Really very helpful for pet owners.

    • sarovai profile image

      sarovai 6 years ago

      Very informative hub , not only for US citizen's , but also for other parts of the world. As you mentioned, we may not be knowing the quality and expiry of medicine , when we opt for online-purchase. It is always good to go for reputed sites, which is offering genuine medicines, may be of slight higher price than other sites. Thank u for sharing.

    • Lucky Cats profile image

      Kathy 6 years ago from The beautiful Napa Valley, California

      Thank you, billips, for a very informative and useful hub. As I do animal rescue; we have an inordinate # of companion animals for whom I purchase online...flea, tick, ear mite medications. Ear cleansing solutions and anti fungal ointments. So far, so good. I will keep this hub in mind at all times in the future when ordering online; it is valuable and sage advice and could, though I order from reputable sources, save my animals and myself much grief and potential suffering. Up Awesome and Useful, Interesting.