Posted on 07-25-2017
Purchasing Veterinary Medications
- As a pet owner you are constantly being bombarded with all sorts of advertisements, enticements, and solicitations trying to gain your business from various sources. The online pharmacies and big box stores are making a concerted effort to try to get your business. They make all sorts of claims and offers but you are not being told the whole truth.
- If you want what is the best for your pets you should deal with a source you can trust, your veterinarian, who is totally dedicated to providing the best care for your pets. The products we provide are those that we know are the best available and from trusted distributers and manufacturers. Many of the online pharmacies get their medication from foreign sources and some people have received medication from them which is outdated.
- Another problem when purchasing online, is counterfeit products. These products look like the real thing but are not. Recently a CEO of a major packaging firm pleaded guilty to selling counterfeit animal health product labels and packaging in federal court. His operation produced counterfeit artwork for flea control products Frontline and Frontline Plus sold by Merial and also trafficked in counterfeit trademarked Rimadyl labels, a popular veterinary pain medication marketed by Zoetis. The $17 billion global veterinary medicines market is currently “reeling under threat from the availability of low quality counterfeit products” according to Transparency Market Research. Can you imagine giving your beloved pet fake medicine?
- Another huge advantage for obtaining your medications from Ibis Animal Hospital is that the manufacturers provide guarantees when you purchase directly from us. The online pharmacies and big box stores do not have similar manufacturer based guarantees. For instance, the Plus Guarantee is offered by Merial (the maker of Heartgard Plus).
- The Plus Guarantee remains in force only if you purchase their product from a licensed veterinarian which you maintain a valid doctor-owner-patient relationship. Merial promises that when Heartgard Plus is used as directed it will provide protection for your dog, including: highly effective prevention of heartworm disease along with treatment and control of common canine parasites (roundworms and hookworms). These parasites can not only infect your pet, they can infect you too! Roundworms, for instance, is reportedly the most common cause of blindness in children.
- If you are not satisfied with the performance of Heartgard Plus against heartworms, hookworms and/or roundworms, all or a portion of treatment costs may be covered. Annual heartworm tests, fecal examinations, and year-round treatment with Heartgard Plus are required to keep the guarantee in force.
- Other perceived advantages of dealing with an online pet pharmacy or big box stores is pricing and (in the case of the online sources) convenience of home delivery. There is a misconception that the prices of veterinary pharmaceuticals are much cheaper at these sources compared to purchasing them directly from your veterinarian. Despite the assurances that you are getting quality, guaranteed product from your veterinarian, in these tough economic times, price can be a factor. You may be surprised to know that our prices are very reasonable in comparison with the online pharmacies and big box stores. Not only are we price competitive, we have many manufacturer’s coupons, rebates and buyer reward programs available at Ibis Animal Hospital for many of our products. These currently include Science Diet foods, Rimadyl & Galliprant pain medications, Heartgard Plus anti-parasiticide & Nexgard chewable flea and tick medication among others making our prices even more competitive! Be certain to consider the incentives we can provide when checking out the prices online.
- One last comment about price: if we don’t meet or beat a price online we will almost always price match it. Exceptions are typically products that we suspect to be counterfeit. When I get a request from an online pharmacy I often compare the price to ours and most often find that not only are we priced almost the same as their “sale price” but when you add on the rebates we have that they can’t offer you we are significantly cheaper. And that is all while maintain a safe product from a trusted source and with a manufacturer guarantee!
- Just today, I had a request from a client from an online pharmacy. The request was for 12 months of Heartgard 26-50lb and 6 months of Nexgard 24-60lb. When I checked this pharmacies website and compared their price to ours, including the rebates we had available we were selling these products for almost $13 less! And by purchasing the product online the client was giving up the peace of mind of purchasing from trusted sources and losing the manufacturer guarantee. Just because they advertise they are cheaper than us does not make it true!
- As far as convenience goes, we too have an online store with a variety of products which can be purchased and delivered directly to your door. Shipping is free for orders over $49.99 or at any price point if you select Autoship. You can access our online store by clicking on the “Online Pharmacy” button on our website homepage. By purchasing the product through our online store, as you are purchasing from your veterinarian with whom you have a direct relationship, all the manufacturer guarantees still are in force. This is not true if you use other online pharmacies or go to the big box stores. Our online store is especially helpful for our seasonal clients or those that travel. You can get your pets food or medication delivered directly to your front door wherever you are.
- If you do not wish to use the online pharmacy, we do offer direct shipping from the clinic too. We do charge for the shipping. If you have questions about having a medication shipped or our prices on our in clinic items or our online store feel free to contact us.
- As a final note, the allure of the online pharmacies and big box stores as sources of pet medications because of cost as well as convenience is not as advantageous as it seems. Purchasing products directly from Ibis Animal Hospital gives you the assurance that you are purchasing genuine, quality products that are backed by ironclad manufacturer’s guarantees. In addition, the conception that online is always cheaper does not hold, because our online prices are highly competitive and if you purchase your medications at the hospital you are able to utilize manufacturer’s coupons, rebates and reward programs which will also help to further lower the cost. With our online store we are also able to provide you with the convenience of shopping at home.
If you have any question or concerns contact us at the hospital 561-625-6970 or email us at IbisAnimalHospital@Bellsouth.net or send us a message at www.IbisAnimalHospital.com