By this point, it is pretty well known that purchasing medication – prescription and over-the-counter alike – from online pharmacies based in the Canada is one of the surest ways for American citizens to make significant savings on drugs that can be prohibitively costly south of the border. Several factors have boosted the cross-border medication trade, not least of which is the fact that Canada’s regulatory standards for medication is every bit as stringent as that in the U.S. In fact, the American FDA recently officially designated its equivalent authority in Canada, the CFIA, as enforcing standards in line with those expected in America. Safe and secure in Canada therefore means safe and secure in the U.S. – but much less expensive.
It is this winning combination of value for money and peace of mind (provided buyers are using secure and IPABC-certified sites like Canada Pharmacy) that has seen the market explode. And with every successful commercial enterprise comes the inevitable diversification. The newest development in what is very much an ongoing story is the increasing number of Americans turning to Canadian online pharmacies to purchase veterinary medication for their pets.
Pet Meds in the U.S.
In many ways, the prices of veterinary medication in the U.S. follows the general dispiriting trends that characterizes American pharmaceuticals in general. The problem is twofold.
Firstly, there is general feeling that medications purchased through veterinarians and after a consultation are significantly more expensive than those purchased online. If you know just what is wrong with your pet, the argument goes, then you will know what medicines to get – especially if the condition is well-known and common enough to be diagnosed and treated fairly easily. Once you know this, you can get your medication much cheaper online. This accounts for the high prices of medicines sourced directly through vets.
The second reason that veterinary medication is so much more expensive in the U.S. (online and off) is a problem that is very much is specific to the U.S., and closely related to why human medications are also priced so highly. It is tale that will be familiar to anyone who has been following the energetic debates on American public health that periodically dominate newsreels. In the U.S., neither the federal nor the state government plays any role in the pricing of either American-made or imported pet meds. This allows companies to set the prices – and they set them high.
In Canada, by contrast, the government plays an active role in capping prices for veterinary medicine just as it does with human prescriptions and over-the-counter medication. Faced with the possibility of losing the entire Canadian market, pharmaceutical companies capitulate, and Canadian pet owners get cheaper meds. And, following a familiar pattern, Americans have become eager to get in on the savings as well.
How Are Veterinary Drugs Regulated in Canada?
Although being sourced from many of the same international pharmaceutical companies (Canada’s domestic pharma industry is very small), pet medicine is not quite regulated in the same way as conventional meds. So how does it differ?
As it turns out, the main difference is that it is handled by a different authority. For approval, new medicines must be submitted to Canada’s Veterinary Drugs Directorate, who ensure that the medicine is safe, effective and of high quality before approving it with a drug identification number. When buying Canadian pet drugs online, it is important to check that this approval has been secured. If so, the Canadian pet drugs will meet the same, or even higher, standards than it is expected to in the U.S. Hence the popularity.