A Veterinarian’s View on Generic Pet Medications

Generic pet medications can help save on pet care costs while maintaining the same effectiveness of brand names

With the expanding world of expensive drugs and pharmaceuticals in both human and veterinary medicine, it’s always a welcome relief when a patent has expired because less expensive but chemically identical generic drugs come out. In human medicine, the standards for producing a generic drug are equal to that of a name brand, which is why when filling prescriptions a generic drug is usually filled if available.
While in veterinary medicine, the standards may not be the same, I have found that most of the generic drugs available in veterinary medicine perform equally as well as the name brands. For example, I have found Iverhart equal to Heartgard in reliability and performance for heartworm prevention. Carprofen is another example of a nonsteroidal anti inflammatory drug that in my experience also performs equally as well for pain relief as its brand name predecessor, Rimadyl. There are many other examples of generic medicines performing equally as well as name brand drugs in veterinary medicine. So, if they are available to you, I highly recommend their use as a more economic alternative.

Need help finding a generic for your pet’s medication? Refer to the following list of Generic Pet Medications & Affordable Alternatives.


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  1. Thank you for sharing your point of view both as a vet and a dogie parent.keep it up.

  2. I’m a new dog owner and recently switched vets because they would not fill the generic Iverhart that I ordered on-line. It was a $37 savings over 12 months than the price they charge for Heartgard. I got the feeling they were more interested in running up a bill than caring for my dog. They have a write up on their website about why people shouldn’t order meds on-line, but instead from their in-house pharmacy. I got a bad vibe and cancelled the appointment. I will try a new vet.

  3. Dr. Michael Dym, VMD veterinarianDecember 7, 2012 at 1:20 pm

    I would look for a vet who will legally fill your written script on line. 1800petmeds very reliable and trustworthy. Legally vets must write script for you if your pet current on heartworm testing.

  4. Bonnie (bones) MayneOctober 25, 2013 at 7:21 am

    hwllo doc we were wondering if for our 11 yr old domestic short hair cat tigger a slightly overweight orange and white tabby would it be ok to give him loratadine 10 mg. for his sneezing and coughing we cant find any info on petsmed anywhere about that chem. we wouldnt want to hurt him in any way so we thought we had better ask you in hopes for a timely responce he is miszerable constantly sneezing over and over poor thing please help. many thanks …bones

  5. Bonnie (bones) MayneOctober 25, 2013 at 7:27 am

    can we give our 11 year old domestic short hair tabby a 10mg loratadine for his constant sneezing and coughing poor boy he is really suffering

  6. Dr. Michael Dym, VMD veterinarianOctober 26, 2013 at 1:30 am

    I dont have experience with this antihistamine. Maybe try chlorphenirimine at dose of 2 mg twice daily.

  7. Dr. Michael Dym, VMD veterinarianOctober 26, 2013 at 1:30 am

    Try chlorphenirimine at dose of 2 mg twice daily instead, as well as DMG liquid from 1800petmeds.

  8. I am almost positive first shield trio from ban field did not work on my dog and two cats. I believe it was not applied correctly. It has only been two weeks, is it safe to give another dose of another topical flea preventative?

  9. Dr. Michael Dym, VMD veterinarianNovember 28, 2013 at 8:28 pm

    If it has been 2 weeks you should be fine

  10. I have a standard poodle about 7 yrs with two fatty tumors on her back i lanced them, they drained well but now it will not heal up. medicating three times day. any ideals.

  11. Dr. Michael Dym, VMD veterinarianMarch 18, 2015 at 12:36 pm

    Best to have full veterinary exam to make sure antibiotics are not needed and/or surgical intervention.

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