Splitting Your Pet’s Medications Isn’t Cost Effective

For most of us, times are tough. We’re being more careful about how we spend our money, and we’re cutting corners and saving wherever we can. And to save money, many pet owners are trying to cut costs with pet medications by splitting them. It’s especially common with flea preventives and similar meds, but we don’t recommend it.

Splitting your pet's medications could cause them to lose effectiveness

We know you love your pets as much as we love ours, so we’d like to share with you why it’s not a good idea to split pet meds.

When you cut a dose, the medication isn’t as effective.

Splitting flea preventatives between pets leads to inadequate dosage, causing the medication to lose effectiveness against fleas and other pests. Reduced effectiveness leads to an increased chance that your pet will end up with fleas (or ticks), and you’ll end up with an infested house. Fleas and ticks are not only annoying and itchy; they’re also carriers of many diseases – some that can be serious and even deadly for both you and your pet.

It’s nearly impossible to equally split flea medications.

  • Tablets: Remember when you were a kid and you had to share a cookie with a sibling or friend, and no matter how careful you were, the cookie never split in half perfectly, and someone always got the short end of the stick? The same thing can happen when you split pet medications. Although it’s less likely when tablets are scored down the middle to aid in splitting, it can still happen. And as Gary, the Pharmacy Director at 1-800-PetMeds says in this video about splitting medication, the drug manufacturers guarantee that the full tablet has 100% of the dosage it is supposed to have. But they don’t guarantee that the dosage is equally split between “sides.” So even in a scored pill, you might not be able to equally split the medication – even if you equally split the tablet. So if you’re using tablets, such as Comfortis, Sentinel, or Program Tablets, to prevent and kill fleas, don’t split them unless your veterinarian specifically instructs you to do so.
  • Liquid or Top Spot: The same principle applies for liquid and top spot flea preventives. No matter how careful you are, and no matter how precise your measurements, there’s a chance you’ll give an inadequate dose if you try to split medications. Top spot flea preventives, such as Advantage Multi, K9 Advantix II, or Revolution, should only be used exactly as directed for the weight of your pet.

The bottom line is that splitting flea medications puts your pet at higher risk for getting fleas, which could end up costing you a lot more than you’ll save by trying to split meds. As they say, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

Saving money is great. We’re all for it. It’s why provide you with great savings on your favorite pet meds. If you shop with us at 1-800-PetMeds, you’ll also enjoy our extraordinary customer care center and pet pharmacy that will help you with any questions you may have on filling the prescriptions on your pet medicines. While you are visiting our site, don’t miss our “Today’s Specials.” If you hurry, you’ll be able to snag deep discounts on popular flea preventives, like K9 Advantix II, Frontline Plus, and Advantage II. And every day, we feature great discounts on treats, toys, pet meds and other needed pet supplies.

Learn more about how to use flea preventives properly.

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There are 7 comments

  • Greg says:

    Same dosage is used for dogs within a specific weight. So 10-19 lb dog gets the same dosage pill. You are essentially overdosing a 11 lb dog and underdosing a 19 lb dog, so how does cutting a pill in half not give the the dog the right dosage, when the initial prescription has such a high built in tolerance?

  • Albert Ramirez says:

    I agree with Greg. If the pill isn’t equally distributed with the active ingredient, what’s to say the pill has the correct active ingredient at all?

  • amonalisa says:

    I’m in agreement with you GREG. What we need to know is are the pills homogeneously formulated or are they not. The extreme variations in weight show “exact” dosage isn’t that critical. It’s wonderful to have the products, but as in human medicine the prices are gouging prices.

  • Lynn Harkins says:

    Totally agree with these comments! The weight ranges are so high that exact doses are not an issue. And to suggest that a prescription medication is not manufactured so that the entire tablet has the same amount of medication is just laughable. Human medications are cut all the time! My daughter has a 22.4 pound dog – Simparica weight range is 22.1 to 40 pounds! We split the pill and the other half is also split for my 10 pound and 12 pound dogs! Three pets for the price of one.

  • Donna Pevey says:

    I agree. I mean by splitting the pills big Pharma loses money. Why would they NOT try to scare us into buying multiple pills? I wasn’t born yesterday.

  • Big John says:

    Once again I am in agreement with Greg, and this article is written by someone or a company that stands to gain by selling more product. Just my opinion. But for those that read articles that say “medication is not evenly distributed in a pill.” Well they are wrong. In fact some pills or tablets are already pre-stamped so the tablet can be split. There are also pill cutters for an even cut if it’s not prestamped. I get it, some need to save the money. I am a health care provider for humans, NOT animals. But as for me, I have done the math and figured the appropriate mg dosage for a smaller pet and cut a pill to give that correct portion to my smaller pet. In my case, this was temporary, until I could get my small pet in to see the vet next week.

  • Anna Wilson says:

    This statement by any manufacturer is ridiculous. If you can’t guarantee that the correct dose is in half of the pill, how can you guarantee that it’s in the full pill? Unless they are making each pill separately, and we all know they don’t. These statements are simply made to make the company more money. You get a much smaller amount of the product for small dogs as compared to large dogs, and the price should reflect that.

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