If your cat has diabetes, you are probably familiar with insulin -- the hormone that regulates glucose levels in the blood. You are probably also familiar with just how expensive this drug can be. Fortunately, there a number of ways to bring down the cost of this important treatment. Here are some tips for saving on cat insulin.
Typical Cat Insulin Costs
Your cat’s insulin can cost anywhere from $30-$150. The price will vary depending on if you decide to buy from your veterinarian, from an internet retailer, or using a pharmacy benefits plan. The price will also depend on whether you purchase a brand name or generic drug.
Buying Insulin at the Vet vs. Online
Many pet owners don’t realize that they don’t have to buy their pet’s medications from their veterinarian. Because of this, many people end up spending on an arm and a leg on insulin when they don’t have to. Veterinarians and clinics generally markup their medications anywhere from 100% and 160%, and most also charge a $5 to $15 dispensing fee.*
Buying medication online is a much more affordable option. Internet retailers keep prices low by buying medications in bulk and having fewer administrative costs. If you decide to order insulin online, it will require special packaging and overnight shipping to ensure that it stays cold, and this can sometimes mean higher shipping costs. Even so, buying insulin online will probably still be cheaper than buying from your veterinarian.
Buying Brand Name vs. Generic Insulin
A common misconception is that generic drugs don’t work as well as those with brand names. In reality, generic drugs contain the same active ingredients and have the same medicinal effects as their brand name versions. The only reason they cost less is because the manufacturer of the generic product did not have pay for the development or marketing of the drug.
In most cases, you will save money by choosing the generic version. For example, Humulin is a brand name insulin with a retail price of $100-$130. Its generic version, Novolin, has a retail price of $70-$100.
Saving on Your Cat’s Insulin with a Pharmacy Benefits Plan
You could save even more by signing up for a pharmacy benefits plans. These plans save you money and time by partnering with pharmacies, drug companies, veterinarians, and more. Remember: pharmacy benefits plans are not the same as pet insurance. With a pharmacy benefits plan, a monthly or yearly fee earns you access to low-cost pet medications. You could be saving up to 75% on your cat’s insulin.
Sign up or learn more about PetPlus by PetCareRx, the first ever comprehensive savings plan for pets, and find out how much a membership will help you save.
*Consumer Reports: Don’t Automatically Get Pet Medicines From the Vet
More on Ways To Save Money
Your Pet Budget: Managing Your Pet Care Needs
Pet Insurance Costs and Alternatives
How To Safely Buy Budget Pet Meds
This information is for informational purposes only and is not meant as a substitute for the professional advice of, or diagnosis or treatment by, your veterinarian with respect to your pet. It has, however, been verified by a licensed veterinarian for accuracy.