When I adopted my third rescue dog, I realized I had to start looking for ways to save money on pet medications. After adopting my fourth rescue dog, I was glad I did. Between flea control medications, heart worm, the occasional ear or skin infection, and the motion sickness on car rides, buying pet medications became a dreaded affair. First there was the expensive visit to the vet, then the pet medications that seemed to run out in fast-forward speed. Because I love my dogs dearly, I wouldn’t risk their health just to save money. I had to find imaginative but safe ways to save money on pet medications. I’d like to share my pet owner wisdom here, so you too can keep your furry friends healthy and happy without going broke.
Save Money on Vet Visits
For flea control or heart worm medications, your vet will need to see your pet once a year before writing a prescription. This is a good idea in that your vet can make sure your pet is in good health. But if money is tight, it’s a bad idea to stop giving your dog necessary pet medications just because you can’t afford to go to the vet (or in my case, to take four dogs to the vet). One thing you can do is become an expert at giving your dog a health exam yourself. In fact, by giving your pet an exam every month, you can get to know your pets body and what’s normal or abnormal for him. Here’s my tutorial on giving your pet a medical checkup.
If you decide that you want a vet to see your pet once a yea, you can still save money. Veterinary offices will typically deal with every type of pet health issue, from the most simple to as complex as surgery. For this reason, the cost of running the practice is high and visiting your vet is costly. But for routine vet services, you can visit a local vet clinic instead. Clinics specialize in basic exams and the treatment of simple infections, as well as spaying, neutering and teeth cleaning. Read my article on how to find the best money saving vet clinics in your area, ones that you can trust your pet’s health to.
Save Money on Pet Medications
Some online discount pet supply stores will sell pet medications without a prescription. Some of them are legitimate and safe to buy from, but others will have repacked medications or expired medications. It’s important to choose your store very carefully. CanadaVet is my choice for saving money on pet meds. For one thing, the medications are less expensive, for another, I don’t need a prescription. The pet medications at Canada Vet come from Australia or the UK. They look exactly like the US product and are sealed when I get them. I have been using Canada Vet for over 6 years and have never had a problem.
Some medications are not carried by Canada Vet, as the US manufacturer does not allow them to sell pet medications outside the US. In that case, Canada Vet will suggest an alternative to you. You can also look at their suggestions for generic brands, which can save you even more money on pet medications.
Save Money on Bulk Purchases of Pet Medications
Whether you have several dogs as I do, or just want to save money on pet medications for one dog, you can make use of the simple principal of bulk purchasing. I achieve this in several ways. The simplest is to buy more in order to qualify for free shipping. Another imaginative way to save money is to shop for a larger breed. For heart worm medication that comes in the form of a pill or a chewable block, I buy pet medications for a dog who is twice as heavy as mine. I then split the dose in half and each pet medication lasts twice as long. Though I pay a little more for the larger dose pet medications, in the end it saves me money over buying two small pet meds.
Even with prescription medications that you cannot get at Canada Vet you can still employ this method. Simply ask your vet to prescribe a higher dose, with the understanding that you will give your pet half. For example, my small dog always gets car sickness and my vet prescribed Cerenia 16mg for her. I then asked my vet to write the prescription for the 60mg tablets instead, to be taken a quarter pill at a time (15mg). This worked well, and I was able to save quite a bit of money on my pet medication.
Save Money by Buying Generic or Cheaper Products
For routine pet health issues like flea control and heart worm there are many products you can choose from. If you use Canada Vet check out their generic products, or look for all the options that fall under your search criteria. Thus, don’t search for a specific brand. Search, instead, for “flea control” and see which products come up. Read the full description, to understand what the pet medication covers and how it’s applied. And choose the pet medication that will save you money.
If you liked this article, here are my dog training tips for people who love their dogs to bits.