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Are Online Pet pharmacies Safe for My Pets? Pros and Cons

Last Updated on January 5, 2023 by Dogs Vets

Online pet pharmacies can be a convenient option for pet owners to fill their furry friend’s prescriptions. But, is it safe to purchase medications for your pet online?

Here’s what you need to know about the safety of online pet pharmacies.

First and foremost, it is important to note that not all online pet pharmacies are created equal. Some online pharmacies are legitimate and follow the same safety and regulatory standards as traditional brick-and-mortar pharmacies.

These online pharmacies require a prescription from a licensed veterinarian and only dispense FDA-approved medications.

On the other hand, there are also many illegitimate online pet pharmacies that do not require a prescription and may sell counterfeit, expired or potentially dangerous medications.

These pharmacies may not follow proper storage and handling guidelines, which can compromise the safety and effectiveness of the medications.

To ensure that you are using a safe and legitimate online pet pharmacy, look for the following:

  • A licensed pharmacist on staff
  • A valid pharmacy license number
  • A requirement for a prescription from a licensed veterinarian
  • Contact information and a physical address listed on the website

It is also a good idea to check with your veterinarian to see if they have any recommendations for reputable online pharmacies.

Your veterinarian may also be able to provide you with the medications that your pet needs directly or through their own online pharmacy.

Additionally, it is important to follow the proper dosing and administration instructions for any medication that you give to your pet. This includes using the correct form of the medication (such as a pill or liquid) and administering it at the correct frequency and dosage.

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If you have any concerns about the safety or effectiveness of a medication, you should consult with your veterinarian. They can answer any questions you have and provide guidance on the best course of treatment for your pet.

It is also worth noting that some online pet pharmacies may offer discounts or promotions on medications. While saving money can be appealing, it is important to consider the potential risks of using an unknown or questionable pharmacy.

In the long run, it may be worth paying a bit more for medications from a reputable source to ensure the safety and well-being of your pet.

In summary, online pet pharmacies can be a convenient option for filling your pet’s prescriptions, but it is important to do your research and only use reputable sources.

Be sure to follow the proper dosing and administration instructions, and consult with your veterinarian if you have any concerns.

By taking these precautions, you can ensure that your pet receives safe and effective medications.

10 Important Facts about Online Pet Pharmacies

  1. Online pet pharmacies are websites that allow you to purchase medications and other supplies for your pet over the internet.
  2. Online pet pharmacies must be licensed by the state in which they operate and must adhere to the same standards as traditional brick-and-mortar pharmacies.
  3. In order to purchase medications from an online pet pharmacy, you will typically need a prescription from a veterinarian.
  4. It is important to verify the legitimacy of an online pet pharmacy before making a purchase, as there have been cases of fraudulent pharmacies operating online.
  5. Online pet pharmacies may offer lower prices for medications and other supplies than traditional pharmacies.
  6. Many online pet pharmacies offer the option to set up automatic refills for regularly-needed medications.
  7. Online pet pharmacies can deliver medications and other supplies directly to your doorstep.
  8. Online pet pharmacies do not offer face-to-face consultation with a pharmacist or other healthcare professional.
  9. Shipping delays can be a problem with online pet pharmacies, particularly if your pet needs the medication urgently.
  10. Online pet pharmacies do not offer in-person services such as vaccinations or other medical procedures.

I hope these facts are helpful! Please let me know if you have any other questions.

 

Pros & Cons

 

Pros of online pet pharmacies:

 

  1. Convenience: Online pet pharmacies allow you to order medications and other supplies for your pet from the comfort of your own home.
  2. Cost savings: Online pet pharmacies may offer lower prices for medications and other supplies than traditional brick-and-mortar pharmacies.
  3. Wide selection: Online pet pharmacies often have a larger selection of medications and other products than local pharmacies, making it easier to find what you need.
  4. Auto-refill options: Many online pet pharmacies offer the option to set up automatic refills for regularly-needed medications, which can be a convenient way to ensure that your pet’s medications are always in stock.
  5. Home delivery: Online pet pharmacies can deliver medications and other supplies directly to your doorstep, eliminating the need to make a trip to the pharmacy.
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Cons of online pet pharmacies:

 

  1. Potential for fake or expired medications: There is a risk of purchasing fake or expired medications from online sources, which can be dangerous for your pet.
  2. Lack of personal interaction: Online pet pharmacies do not offer the opportunity for face-to-face consultation with a pharmacist or other healthcare professional.
  3. Shipping delays: Medications and other supplies may be delayed in shipping, which can be a problem if your pet needs the medication urgently.
  4. Difficulty in verifying the legitimacy of the pharmacy: It can be difficult to determine whether an online pet pharmacy is legitimate or not, and there have been cases of fraudulent pharmacies operating online.
  5. Lack of access to in-person services: Online pet pharmacies do not offer in-person services such as vaccinations or other medical procedures.

I hope this list of pros and cons is helpful! Please let me know if you have any other questions. 

In conclusion, while online pet pharmacies can be a convenient option, it is important to do your research and only use reputable sources.

By following these guidelines, you can ensure that your pet is receiving safe and effective medications.

10 Questions and answers on online pet pharmacies 

  1. Are all online pet pharmacies safe?

    No, not all online pet pharmacies are safe. Some online pharmacies are legitimate and follow the same safety and regulatory standards as traditional brick and mortar pharmacies, while others may be illegitimate and sell counterfeit, expired, or potentially dangerous medications.

  2. How can I tell if an online pet pharmacy is safe?

    To ensure that you are using a safe and legitimate online pet pharmacy, look for the following:

    A licensed pharmacist or staff, a valid pharmacy license number, a requirement for a prescription from a licensed veterinarian, and contact information and a physical address listed on the website.

  3. Is a prescription required for medications from an online pet pharmacy?

    This depends on the online pharmacy. Some legitimate online pharmacies will require a prescription from a licensed veterinarian, while others may not. It is important to only use online pharmacies that require a prescription to ensure that the medications are safe and appropriate for your pet.

  4. Can I get the same medications from my veterinarian as from an online pet pharmacy?

    Yes, in many cases you can get the same medications from your veterinarian as from an online pet pharmacy. Your veterinarian may be able to provide the medications directly or through their own online pharmacy.

  5. Is it cheaper to get medications from an online pet pharmacy?

    It is possible that you may be able to find medications at a lower price from an online pet pharmacy, but it is important to consider the potential risks of using an unknown or questionable pharmacy.

    In the long run, it may be worth paying a bit more for medications from a reputable source to ensure the safety and well-being of your pet.

  6. Can I get the same discounts on medications from an online pet pharmacy as from my veterinarian?

    This depends on the online pharmacy and the discounts offered by your veterinarian. It is worth comparing prices and discounts from both sources to determine the best option for you.

  7. Can I get expired or counterfeit medications from an online pet pharmacy?

    It is possible to get expired or counterfeit medications from an online pet pharmacy, especially if the pharmacy is illegitimate. This is why it is important to only use reputable online pharmacies that require a prescription and follow proper safety and regulatory standards.

  8. Is it safe to give my pet medication from an online pet pharmacy?

    The safety of giving your pet medication from an online pet pharmacy depends on the legitimacy and reputation of the pharmacy.

    If you use a reputable online pharmacy that requires a prescription and follows proper safety and regulatory standards, it can be safe to give your pet medication from an online source.

  9. How do I know the proper dosing and administration instructions for my pet’s medication?

    The proper dosing and administration instructions for your pet’s medication should be provided by your veterinarian or on the medication label. Be sure to follow these instructions carefully to ensure the safety and effectiveness of the medication.

  10. What should I do if I have concerns about the safety or effectiveness of my pet’s medication?

    If you have any concerns about the safety or effectiveness of your pet’s medication, you should consult with your veterinarian. They can answer any questions you have and provide guidance on the best course of treatment for your pet.

 

 

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