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Medications are an essential tool for helping pets stay healthy. However, getting pets to take their medications is not always easy. Correct prescribing by the veterinarian is crucial to medication success, but administering the medication correctly is also critical. This is particularly true for medications such as antibiotics that can cause problems if courses of treatment are not completed correctly.
Over-the-counter (OTC) Medications
Over time, many medications initially designed for human use have become available as generics that are much less expensive than the original, brand-name drug. The veterinarian may then prescribe the generic version of the pet for the pet instead of the off-label prescription, which would be considered “off-label prescribing.” This practice contributes to rising prescription medication prices. A medication’s dosage form can significantly affect your pet’s willingness. For example, if your dog or cat refuses to eat pills, ask the veterinarian for advice in changing the pill type or if there is a liquid version of the drug that might be easier for them to swallow. Some vets even offer a specialized syringe to help you deliver the medication directly into your pet’s mouth. When buying your pet’s medication at https://www.retailmenot.com/view/CHEWY.com, always check for a sell-by date and avoid products that appear to be tampered with or contain crushed or broken tablets. You should never purchase expired medication since it can cause dangerous side effects. The most important thing to remember is that a veterinarian’s knowledge of veterinary medicine is essential for diagnosing and treating pets. A trained veterinary pharmacist can ensure that the proper dosage of the drug is given, as humans and pets have different pharmacokinetics that require adjustments in the dose.
Many pet medications come in tablet form. These may be flavored to encourage swallowing (which can be positive if your pet is a pill-hater) or can be coated to help mask the taste of medication. It is essential not to break or crush tablets unless your vet states explicitly that it is okay because the drug’s effectiveness could be compromised, it might make it taste worse, or the pill may disintegrate inside your pet, which can be dangerous for them. A typical tablet is an antibiotic that kills bacteria. Pet owners may need to give their pets-medications like non-steroidal anti-inflammatories and narcotic or opioid pain relievers to ease pain and reduce swelling. Veterinarians prescribe a combination of these drugs, which must be given at specific times for maximum effectiveness. To make administering these medications easier, vets may recommend using a syringe or pipette to directly give the medication to your pet’s mouth. This is best done while holding your pet and stroking the throat gently. Using the proper technique can dramatically improve your pet’s compliance with their prescription.
Daily, veterinarians prescribe pills, capsules, and tablets to cure, control, and prevent illnesses. Correct prescribing by your vet is critical to medication success. Still, the pet owner’s role in administering the proper dose at the right time and storing medications correctly is also essential. Many pet owners need to correctly read or understand dosing instructions or alter their vet’s prescription, leading to medication errors for your pets. These errors can be financially, physically, and emotionally costly to your pet. Pet medication is typically formulated to taste and smell good, which helps your pet comply with treatment. You can give your pet liquid or compounded medications by using a dosing syringe, pipette, or other device to squirt it into their mouth. Liquid medicines are generally easier to give than tablets, but you need to be cautious not to let the medicine enter your pet’s airway as it may cause aspiration. Since every pet is unique and their medical requirements differ from humans, veterinary medication is tailored according to the pet’s age, breed, weight, and other factors. This personalized approach guarantees that your pet receives the best possible care and increases the likelihood of a successful outcome. Incorrectly prescribed or marketed veterinary drugs can be just as dangerous for your pet as human drugs illegally sold to pets or used by people.
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While correct prescribing is one-half of the equation, correctly administering medications by pet owners is equally important. This means only changing doses or using other products that may interact with prescribed drugs with the advice of your veterinary healthcare team. In addition, some prescriptions created for specific animal species are unavailable in commercial formulations. These medications require special preparation, known as compounding, at a pharmacy specializing in this type of therapy. While this option is more expensive than buying an FDA-approved product, it can be the only alternative for a particular disease state or treatment scenario. When choosing a compounding pharmacy for your pet, ensure they have experience in preparing these medications and are aware of the anatomical, physiological, metabolic, behavioral, genetic, and dietary differences between species that should be considered. These steps will ensure your pet gets the best possible outcome from the prescribed medication. It is also critical that you complete the course of medication that has been prescribed, even if your pet appears to be improving, as this will prevent drug resistance and other complications down the road.