How to Save on 10 Common Pet Medications


How to Save on 10 Common Pet Medications

Jennifer Hadley
By Jennifer Hadley
Jun 05, 2018 - Updated Jan 20, 2021
Carina Fung, PharmD, BCPPS
Medically Reviewed ByCarina Fung, PharmD, BCPPS
How to Save on 10 Common Pet Medications

We love our pets. We want them to live long, healthy lives, free of pain, and sickness. However, despite our best efforts, on occasion pets, just like humans, will get sick, and most will need medication at some point. When your pet gets sick, you may be shocked to learn just how expensive their prescribed medication costs.

But you can find significant discounts on many commonly prescribed medications if you know where to look.

Save Up to 80% on Your Prescriptions

Why do pet medications cost so much?

The main reason pet medications cost so much is because the majority of pet owners don’t have pet insurance. According to the American Pet Products Association, Americans are projected to spend more than $30 billion on pet care and medications. While pet insurance is growing in popularity, according to the North American Pet Health Insurance Association, the overwhelming majority of cats and dogs are not covered by pet insurance.

A second reason pet medications can be expensive can be attributed to the emergence of medication which is formulated and sold specifically for pets. Once medications are specifically designed for use in pets, a human generic equivalent may no longer be permitted to be prescribed by a veterinarian, which can drive up the cost.

Finally, the cost of drug development for animals can be staggering. Since the approval process for animal-only medications can be so costly, it forces manufacturers to raise the price of the medication, to account for the expenditure.

There is a Way to Save Money on Pet Prescriptions

If you don’t have pet insurance, don’t panic. There is a way to save money on pet prescriptions because many medications used to treat pets are also used for humans. If your pet is prescribed medication, ask your veterinarian if the drug is also indicated for humans. If so, you may be able to purchase the medication at a retail pharmacy, using a prescription drug coupon to save up to 80%.

10 Common Human Medications Often Prescribed to Pets

Medication Lowest Price for Common Dosages*
Amitriptyline $4.00
Atenolol (generic for Tenormin) $4.00
Cisplatin $22.48
Diazepam (generic for Diazepam Intensol) $4.69
Fluoxetine $4.00
Gabapentin (generic for Neurontin) $4.33
Lantus $293.68
Meloxicam (generic for Mobic) $8.08
Phenobarbital $13.68
Tramadol (generic for Ultram) $3.30

Prescription medication to treat conditions in pets including diabetes, anxiety, pain, arthritis, and even cancer are also often prescribed to humans suffering from the same. Here are 10 common human medications that are often prescribed to pets.


Amitriptyline belongs to a class of drugs known as tricyclic antidepressants. It is prescribed to treat behavior disorders, such as separation anxiety, urine spraying, lower urinary tract disease, and excessive grooming.


Atenolol is a beta-blocker prescribed to treat heart disease and other conditions, such as abnormal heart rhythms, and high blood pressure. It is prescribed for cats, dogs, and ferrets.


Cisplatin is used to treat malignant cancer in dogs and horses. It is not indicated for use in cats. It is administered in an animal hospital setting, and often in combination with other drugs, and IV fluids. Cisplatin is typically only available through specialty pharmacies, check with your veterinarian directly about this prescription.


Diazepam is commonly prescribed as an anticonvulsant, a sedative, a muscle relaxant, or an anti-anxiety medication for dogs and cats. Diazepam may also be prescribed for behavioral problems such as urine spraying, aggression, or excessive grooming.


Fluoxetine belongs to a class of drugs known as Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs). Originally marketed under the brand name of Prozac for humans, fluoxetine is prescribed for cats and dogs suffering from separation anxiety, or behavioral problems such as aggression and urine spraying.


Gabapentin is an anticonvulsant medication prescribed to treat seizures and chronic pain in cats and dogs. Cats are also occasionally prescribed gabapentin to reduce anxiety and fear associated with going to the vet.


Lantus is insulin, which is a human medication that is also used to control blood sugar levels in cats with diabetes.


Meloxicam belongs to a class of drugs known as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Meloxicam may be prescribed to treat pain, inflammation, fever, osteoarthritis, and post-surgical pain in cats and dogs.


Phenobarbital is used to treat epilepsy in cats, dogs, horses, and ferrets. It belongs to a class of drugs known as barbiturates. It may also be used as a sedative for large and small animals.


Tramadol is a drug known as a synthetic opioid. It is used to treat pain in cats, dogs, and small mammals.

"If it was not for RxSaver, I would not be able to afford my medication."


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Ask Your Vet about Using RxSaver

To determine if you can get discounted pet medications, start by searching RxSaver for your pet’s prescription at a pharmacy close to you. Save the best-priced coupon to your phone, or print out the coupon, and ask your veterinarian to send the prescription to this pharmacy. Then simply show your coupon when picking up your pet’s medication, to save up to 80%.

Amitriptyline: 25 mg / 30 tablets

Atenolol: 25 mg / 30 tablets

Cisplatin: 1 mg/ml / 3 vials

Diazepam: 5 mg / 30 tablets

Fluoxetine: 90 mg / 4 capsule drs

Gabapentin: 300 mg / 30 capsules

Lantus: 100/ml / 1 vial

Meloxicam: 15 mg / 30 tablets

Phenobarbital: 64.8 mg / 30 tablets

Tramadol: 50 mg / 30 tablets

*Lowest online price at national pharmacy chains Costco, CVS, RiteAid, Walgreens and Walmart as of 1/20/2021. Prices vary by location and pharmacy, see for actual pricing in your area.

Jennifer Hadley

Jennifer Hadley

Jen Hadley is a freelance writer and journalist based in Los Angeles, who writes extensively about the medical, legal, health care, and consumer products industries. Jen is a regular contributor to RxSaver.

Carina Fung, PharmD, BCPPS

Carina Fung, PharmD, BCPPS

Carina Fung, PharmD, BCPPS., is a pharmacist who earned her PharmD from St. John’s University in Queens, NY. She maintains an active practice, serving as a Board-Certified Pediatric Pharmacotherapy Specialist at a large metropolitan teaching hospital in New York City. Carina has also published in pharmacy journals and works as a consultant reviewing medical articles for publication.

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