Tips to save money on pet medications

March 29, 2012 3:06:30 PM PDT
When the furriest member of the family is sick, we feel it too. And sometimes, we feel it most in our pocketbooks, but there are ways we can save money on pet medications.

As we found out, pet medications can cost you as much as $90 for over-the-counter meds to as high as almost $400 for prescriptions. Let's be honest, that's pretty expensive. When it comes to our four-legged family members, you do what you have to do, but it's always better when you can do it at a discount.

Let's face it, when animals get sick, it can really take a toll on us emotionally and financially.

"Everything together -- the insulin, the needles, special food -- we're looking at $100-$150 in addition to his regular food a month," said pet owner Erin Libranda.

Libranda, who has a knack for finding deals on any and everything, says when she found out about her dog Smudge's diabetes, she was anxious to find discounts on pet meds.

We were too, and as we found out, pet parents should first check their pharmacy; you may be able to save on a pet prescription there.

"A lot of the medicines that you can get in the veterinarian will be the same medicines that we use to treat human diseases," Kroger pharmacy manager Susan Curtis says, "and in fact, you might be able to get them on prescription with us for less than you pay at the veterinarian."

For deep discounts, Curtis says you should ask about their special generic program, which could cost you $4 for a 30-day supply and $10 for a 90-day supply.

But what about giving medicine to your pet if you don't have a prescription? Is it safe to search your own medicine cabinet when it comes to treating your pets?

"This is the Benadryl which we'll commonly use for allergy reactions in animals; this is the children's for in a liquid is very easy to use in animals and it allows you to change the dosage and it's a very good price," Curtis said.

Before you rummage through your medicine cabinet, you should always check with your vet first, especially when it comes to dosage.

Libranda is already taking advantage of her pet med discounts and says it's worth it!

"Finding out about it has saved us a lot of money," she said.

We spoke to a few vets and pharmacists who encourage pet parents to always shop around before actually buying medications for the animals. After all, the same product could cost up to $100 more at another location.

There are a few animal-only pharmacies online but we were only able to find one in the Houston area. You can either shop for pet meds at those pharmacies or you may be able to try your own pharmacy.


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