Dogs, cats and horses can all benefit from pet medications given to treat or prevent disease. However, pet meds that are not handled, stored, or dosed correctly can do more harm than good. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has put together an excellent consumer update outlining 10 questions pet owners should ask their veterinarians when pets are prescribed a new medication.
1. Why has my pet been prescribed this medication and how long do I need to give it?
2. How do I give the medication to my pet? Should it be given with food?
3. How often should the medication be given and how much should I give each time? If it is a liquid, should I shake it first?
4. How do I store the medication?
5. What should I do if my pet vomits or spits out the medication?
6. If I forget to give the medication, should I give it as soon as I remember or wait until the next scheduled dose? What if I accidentally give too much?
7. Should I finish giving all of the medication, even if my pet seems to be back to normal?
8. Could this medication interact with other medications my pet is taking?
9. What reactions should I watch for, and what should I do if I see any side effects?
10. When should I bring my pet back for a recheck? Will you be calling me to check on my pet’s progress, or should I call you?
If you have questions about any OTC or prescription pet medications, make sure to call your veterinarian for clarification.