When purchasing heartworm medication for your dog, it's easy to feel intimidated by the cost. Brand name heartworm medication can cost you quite a bit, especially when combined with the cost of veterinary visits and blood tests. Since Heartgard is only available for purchase in the United States by obtaining a prescription from a veterinarian, some pet owners are exploring other options. When looking to buy Heartgard for dogs without a prescription, there are a variety of sites that offer this service. There are websites that advertise with phrases such as, “Buy Heartgard No Prescription Needed!” or “Generic Heartgard Without A Prescription”. You might be wondering - can you really buy Heartgard without a prescription?
The Quick Answer
Yes, it is possible to buy Heartgard without a prescription. By going through websites that are based outside of the United States, you can often find a place to purchase Heartgard that does not require a prescription from your veterinarian. However, just because you can purchase Heartguard without a prescription, doesn't mean this is best for your pet.
The Truth About Why Heartgard Requires a Prescription
Pharmacies don't require a prescription for Heartgard as a scam to make you spend more on veterinary visits. In reality, it's much smarter to go through your veterinarian to get Heartgard, even though you'll be spending more. You might be wondering, “Why? I can just buy Heartgard online for cheap”.
Heartgard contains a compound called Ivermectin, the active ingredient which makes Heartgard effective in preventing heartworms. However, Ivermectin has an added effect - it helps to kill some of the heartworms which may already exist in your dog's body.
If you are giving Heartgard to a dog without obtaining a prescription from your veterinarian, this means that your dog has not been tested for heartworms. If your dog already has heartworms, this means that Heartgard may begin to kill some of the heartworms in your dog's body. When these worms die, their bodies begin to decompose. This “worm waste” is flushed out of your dog's body through blood vessels and through your dog's lungs. If you aren't aware that your dog has heartworms, your dog could have a fatal pulmonary embolism as a result of attempting to flush the heartworms from its body.
If your vet tests your dog for heartworms and the test comes back positive, your veterinarian will be able to monitor your dog during heartworm treatment. To protect your dog's health, always obtain a prescription for Heartgard from your veterinarian.