To read about
see page 88.
Give the dog
a bone pill!
SOME DOGS will eat anything and everything, including their medications. However, most dogs are reluctant patients.
The ASPCA ( www.aspcabehavior.org)
offers some good tips and directions about
humane pilling techniques.
cats and dogs
Try these tricks first
• When available, request chewable
medications. They’re flavored and
taste just like treats.
•Mix the dog’s medication into a
meal; it may go unnoticed. If you
feed the dog kibble, add a small
amount of canned food or a soft
treat, such as a cube of cheese or
hot-dog chunk with the pill pushed
inside. Wrapping the pill inside a
slice of cheese or meat might also
be a successful disguise.
•If your dog tends to chew treats
rather than swallow them whole,
make them small. Give him a few
unloaded treats first, followed by
one with the pill inside and a final
•Dogs who enjoy catching treats
CONTINUED ON PAGE 68
lower the cost of pet healthcare
By David Wight
ANIMAL LOVER Hazel Mortensen is worried about high veterinarian bills, and thinks
that many people in her age group—the
76-year-old Costco member lives in Solvang,
California—don’t adopt pets because they
fear potential veterinarian expenses. She has
learned one way to save money is by getting
the human version of a drug for her dog from
a Costco pharmacy, but that alternative
doesn’t apply to all types of pet meds.
Here’s good news for Mortenson and
other members. Costco pharmacies now dispense nearly 100 of the most-used prescription drugs for dogs and cats (see partial list at
right). That means high value, with prices
lower than those charged by veterinarians or
any of the online pet-med suppliers.
“There’s a wide range in prices that vet-
erinarians charge for drugs, and it’s that dis-
crepancy—what vets charge versus what
Costco would charge—that motivated us to
get into this market,” says Rich Martinson,
assistant vice president of Costco pharmacy
operations. “We’re already familiar with fill-
ing prescriptions for animals, but now we’re
moving into the arena with drugs that used to
be exclusively available from veterinarians.”
Here are three ways to start saving money
on your pet’s healthcare:
Current prescription. If you have a dog
or cat that regularly uses a prescription drug,
bring the prescription bottle to the pharmacy
the next time you come to Costco. The pharmacy staff will be able to tell you about availability and price and can arrange to transfer
the prescription from your veterinarian.
New prescription. When your veterinarian suggests a treatment for your dog
or cat that includes a new prescription,
say you’re a Costco member and that you
likely will save money by getting the medication from a Costco pharmacy. The vet will be
able to call or fax the prescription directly to
APRIL 2012 ;e Costco Connection 67
Costco or write a prescription for you to take
to the pharmacy.
Added Costco member value.
Another point of savings with both current and
new prescriptions is the Costco Member
Prescription Program (CMPP), a Costco-member-only program for those who have
no prescription drug coverage through any
insurance plan. Since pets are not eligible
under your own medical plan, essentially
they are uninsured and qualify for CMPP.
The Costco pharmacy should automatically
initiate CMPP for your pet prescription, and
you will be getting the lowest possible Costco
price for that medication.
To locate the Costco pharmacy closest to
you, visit Costco.com and click on “Locations”
at the top of the page. You’ll be able to find
warehouses listed by state, with the pharmacy
phone number and hours of operation. C