The Dangers of Purchasing Pet Medication Online

While ordering discount pet meds online sounds like a great time and money saver, it turns out that this may be one of the most dangerous things can be done for a pet.

While the U.S. Food and Drug Administration released consumer health information in 2010 warning pet owners against these risky online purchases, the information is still pertinent today, as the Internet and online shopping have both become even more popular.
According to the report released by the FDA, buyers should be aware of the implications that come with purchasing pet medication online. While discounted offers and the ease of acquiring the medications may seem like the best solution, oftentimes, companies that offer these benefits are attempting to trick pet owners. Companies have been selling unapproved pet drugs and counterfeit products for years, and this is still a danger to pet owners and their pets today.

One of the biggest red flags that pet owners should look out for is that there are foreign Internet pharmacies that advertise benefits such as pet meds for less, but do not follow through, according to the report. Yes, these medications will be sold at a discounted rate, but oftentimes, they are not FDA-approved. These medications also do not usually require a prescription from veterinarians, making it possible for pet owners to get any medications they think their pet may need.

Another danger is that pet owners may not receive the proper dosage or type of medication they are expecting to receive. With some of these companies that sell discounted pet meds online, what you see may not be what you get. People who are providing these pet medications can easily refill the proper medication bottles with the wrong medication, which can be very misleading to pet owners who are just attempting to help their pets become healthy again.

There are ways to get around these dangers of ordering pet medications online by filling pet prescriptions through reputable pharmacies that are qualified to sell pet medications.

If the company is an online-based company, it is important to check that the website belongs to Vet-VIPPS (Veterinary Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice Sites) accredited pharmacies. According to the FDA, these certified pharmacies are accredited by the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP), which indicates that these pharmacies “comply with NAPB's strict criteria, including federal and state licensing and inspection requirements, protecting patient confidentiality, quality insurance, and validity of prescription orders.”

Additionally, there are discounts that can still be applied to these safe pharmacies for pet medications. Pet prescription discount cards can be utilized to purchase pet medications from pharmacies, helping to eliminate some of the costs and making the medication needed more affordable for the pet owner.

No matter what, if an online company is not marked with a Vet-VIPPS seal, members of the FDA strongly warn against purchasing medication from these websites. These companies can sell the incorrect medication that can make pets even sicker and potentially cause more harm for pets. Pets should always be examined, diagnosed and prescribed medication by a veterinarian before any medication is ordered. Discounted pet meds are still available, but pet owners do not need to go through illegal companies just to get a good deal.

Author bio: Allan Caan is the owner of Free Pet RX Discount Card, an online website that provides pet owners with a free pet prescription discount card that can be used in 56,000 pharmacies across the nation. Using discount prescription cards provides pet owners with a way to pick up prescription medicine for their pets and receive an average discount of 30% off pet medication.