Prescription Policy

We will gladly write a prescription for your pet’s medications to be filled at a retail pharmacy, upon your request, during your pet's exam with us.

Written Prescriptions must be provided at the time of the exam to avoid incurring a filing and documentation fee.

A complete exam and appropriate, current blood work, is necessary to fill most prescriptions.

Although retail pharmacies may offer veterinary-specific medications, oftentimes, processing and shipping cause significant delays in your pet receiving the medications they need.

Keep in Mind Retail Pharmacists and Pharmacy Technicians are not trained in Veterinary Pharmacology.

In order for us to provide you with a written prescription for a retail pharmacy, federal and state laws require a valid patient-client relationship. To comply with these regulations, the following will be required for us to provide you with a prescription to be filled by a retail pharmacy.  To see the Illinois Veterinary Examiners Policy Statement on Valid Client Patient Relationship click here.

  1. A complete physical exam of your pet by one of our staff veterinarians will be necessary every six months. For "VIP Wellness Plan" pets, the exam fee is included with your plan.

  2. Antibiotics and anti-fungal medications will always require examination prior to refilling.

  3. Prescriptions will be written with the number of refills your pet’s doctor deems appropriate.

  4. Heartworm and Flea Preventives may be written for 1 year.

  5. Appropriate monitoring blood work must be performed prior to refills.

Why An Examination Every 6 Months?

To establish a proper relationship, we need to be assured your pet is still in optimum health and the medication is working properly. Since pets cannot talk to us, and often subtle signs of illness are missed by owners, this is the best way for us to ensure your pet’s medication requirements have not changed.

In addition, some medications, like Heartworm prevention, can be shared between pets. We will need to be sure the pet is still in your possession, living in your household, weight has not changed, and proper testing has been performed. In addition, as noted below, some medications require blood testing every 6 months.

Written Prescriptions must be provided at the time of the exam to avoid incurring a fee for documentation and administrative time.

We respect the right of our clients to get their pet's medications from the pharmacy of their choice. Unfortunately, due to the high number of requests by online pharmacies that are inappropriate and consume a large amount of our staff time, you will incur a filing and documentation fee per script.

In the event you must change pharmacies you will need to contact the original pharmacy to have your prescription transferred.    

Processing these requests, outside of a scheduled appointment, requires staff to review your pet’s records, have a doctor review and approve the request and prepare the written prescription.  In order to recover the cost of these requests there is a nominal fee for written prescriptions requested outside of an exam/appointment, which covers record review and documentation time. 

Therapeutic Lab Testing Schedule

To ensure the safe use of certain chronic medications, blood tests are necessary to ensure efficacy as well as determine whether or not your pet is having adverse effects to organ function.

  • NSAID - Chemistry Panel every 6 months

  • Thyroid– Yearly, or as needed to regulate proper levels

  • Insulin– As required to monitor the effectiveness of medication

  • Heartworm– Testing will be required yearly

  • Seizure medications- At least yearly, but as required to monitor for toxicity and effectiveness

  • Behavior/Anxiety Medications– Chemistry Panel and CBC Yearly

  • Estrogen- Chemistry & CBC Panel Yearly

  • PPA- Chemistry & CBC Panel Yearly

  • Heart Medications and/or Furosemide- Chemistry Panel Yearly, +/- Chest radiography, Blood Pressure and EKG

  • Controlled Medications - Exam every 6 months, and appropriate Chemistry Panel Yearly

Benefits of Our Pharmacy

Flexibility- By filling your pet’s medications in our pharmacy, we maintain a record of your refills, assuring your pet is getting the medication on schedule as needed. This can allow more flexibility on the exam and testing requirements since we are familiar with your circumstances. When you refill your pets' medications at a retail pharmacy, we have no record of the frequency of refills.

True Convenience- No need to spend time waiting for your pet’s prescription while you shop, or to send a written prescription to an online pharmacy just to wait days for the medications to arrive. Just call ahead, or e-mail us your refill request, and it will be waiting for you, or filled within minutes when you stop by.

Knowledge- Our veterinarians and staff are trained and knowledgeable about the proper use, safety, and benefits of any given veterinary pharmaceutical - including extra-label use, which is routine in veterinary medicine. Pharmacists and pharmacy technicians, are not routinely trained in veterinary pharmaceuticals, and can usually only explain the label claims of any given product.

We only keep pet-safe medications in our pharmacy. We have seen retail pharmacies substitute medications that contain dangerous ingredients, like xylitol, that have caused pet illness.  They just did not understand the difference between people and pets, enough to realize they were giving a toxic substitution to the pet owner.  

Shop Local- By purchasing your pet’s preventive and chronic medications from our pharmacy you will be providing revenue to help support maintenance of our state-of-the-art facility and equipment that allows us to provide your pet with profoundly personalized care.  

In addition, your purchases help provide for the salaries of the dedicated staff of Urban Vet Associates, that truly care about and know your pet. You and your pet are more than a transaction to us.  We truly care about you and your pet’s health, unlike the retail pharmacies where you are just another transaction. With us, you are doing business with neighbors and friends, not a distant corporate office. 

Product Guarantees- We stand behind our products! Guarantees offered by manufacturers are often only honored if the medication is purchased through a veterinary pharmacy. Generic heartworm medication available at retail pharmacies may not have a treatment guarantee in the event your pet contracts heartworms or intestinal parasites while receiving the product.

We have an Online store too! Ordering through our online store allows for flawless transitions between medications dispensed directly and allows for access without requiring any written prescriptions. Many times shipping is included - especially for preventions and therapeutic diets which require routine delivery.

All of the items purchased through our online platform carry the same guarantees as the products purchased directly from the clinic.

Online Pharmacy Requests

Due to several legal and medical liability issues, we do not respond to Faxed or E-mailed requests from Online Pharmacies.

Fill Out Our Online Pharmacy Waiver

By authorizing solicited prescription requests, it transfers liabilities to our practice and doctors in the event the online pharmacy provides the wrong medication or instructions.

We do not communicate with outside online pharmacies by phone, email or fax, we simply do not have the staffing to manage the constant interruptions that online pharmacies place on veterinary practices.

Before your buy online consider these articles:

ONLINE PET PHARMACIES: Protect Yourself and Your Pet

Purchasing Pet Drugs Online Buyer Beware