January 17, 2019
Ordering pet food and meds online is so easy, right? Click a few buttons, type in a little info and products are delivered to your door, saving time and money.
Unfortunately, it’s not always the safest way to get the medications, preventives and prescription foods your pet needs. Some online retailers sell “diverted” items—these are products purchased in bulk and then sold to the online retailer before being resold to the consumer. Diverted products may no longer carry the manufacturer’s guarantees for safety and efficacy. Additionally, since the under-the-table sales of these “diverted” products are not being tracked, there is no way of knowing if the products have been stored and shipped correctly to preserve the products properly. The result is that you may receive expired food or medications, or even counterfeit drugs.
Manufacturers of products like Sentinel Spectrum and Bravecto specify that their products only be sold directly by veterinarians. They do this so that the product can be tracked from the manufacturing facility to the warehouse, through shipping and right to our hospital—guaranteeing that their quality assurance measures are followed each step of the way. When sold directly to a veterinary hospital, manufacturers are able to offer a product guarantee that will pay 100% of the diagnosis and necessary treatment of adverse reactions or product defects.
Even so, many people believe that the products are the same no matter where you buy them. But the fact is that’s just not true. In September 2017, a federal investigation prosecuted an international company for selling over $35 million worth of counterfeit flea and tick products in every US state. There were even vendors who pleaded guilty right here in Houston to mass producing the counterfeit packaging!
The pets of unsuspecting families pay the price in lack of protection from parasites or in the worst cases, serious illness and death when these preventives and medications are repackaged incorrectly or are counterfeit. This is the primary reason why we do not approve or send authorizations to third-party vendors like 1-800-Pet-Meds and Chewy.com for medications, preventives or prescription foods. Our mission at GOVC is to ensure that you feel informed and your pet receives the highest quality of care in everything we do. We hold ourselves to a higher standard, and in the same way we demand transparency and accountability in all things for our patients.
We understand that convenience plays a huge role in wanting to order from online stores, and we want to make things as easy as possible for you. We now have our own online store right on our website where you can purchase heartworm, flea and tick preventatives, regular and prescription foods and much more to be delivered straight to your door! Simply create an account, select the products you would like to order, and it will send us a prescription approval review. You can even set up auto-shipments, and your purchases will still qualify toward the same manufacturer rebates we offer in-hospital.
We want to ensure the manufacturer will stand behind what you give and that your pets receive the safest and most effective products. We hope you appreciate our level of care and invite you to call us at (713) 659-0650 if you have any questions or concerns.