Internet Pharmacies: What You Need to Know
Story Date: 6/17/2011

Where do you get your pet’s medications?  There are good deals out there, but your veterinarian is probably the best option for safe, effective and reputable pet meds.

Pet owners are busy and budget-conscious, just like everyone else.  That’s why online pet pharmacies seem to be so popular.  However,  pet owners should be aware of the pitfalls and concerns of using an online store for your pet’s medication needs.

First, a valid veterinarian-client-patient relationship (VCPR) needs to be established.  This means your veterinarian needs to see your pet at least once a year in order to dispense medications.

If the online store offers to send you drugs without a prescription, stay away! This is a big red flag warning that the site is probably not reputable.

Likewise, having a current VCPR means that you and your veterinarian are in good communication and up-to-date on your pet’s healthcare needs.  An Internet pharmacy may not know all the important details of your pet’s lifestyle and health.

Some pets don’t react to the same drugs in the same way.  Your veterinarian is only a phone call away and more likely to provide immediate assistance than a distant website.

In fact, some web pharmacies don’t even list a phone number for contact, only email.  This is another red flag that the site isn’t concerned about your pet.

Your veterinarian and veterinary team know you and your whole pet family. They can help guide you towards safe and effective medications with everyone’s best interest in mind.

In fact, many veterinarians now offer their very own online pharmacies.  These are great places to get affordable pet medications from a source you know and trust.

And remember, if you have questions about your pet’s medication costs, ask your veterinarian. Open and honest communication is the best key for avoiding misunderstandings about money.


NC Veterinary Medical Association
1611 Jones Franklin Road, Suite 108
Raleigh, NC 27606-3376
Tel: (919) 851-5850
Fax: (919) 851-5859