Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Doctor's Orders

The About 3 years ago, our Golden Retriever, Simba, (then only two years old) started having seizures.  They were very frightening, but were infrequent. 

The very first one happened in the peak of summer while playing his very favorite thing in the world: fetch the tennis ball.

(I wish that ANYTHING made as happy as a tennis ball makes Simba.)

We had been playing ball for quite some time in the middle of the afternoon on a hot-as-the-hinges-of-hell Alabama summer day...so when Simba started staggering and looking disoriented, we thought we'd let him over-do it and that he was having a heat-stress related episode.

A couple of months later, it happened when we were inside and nothing special was going on...we managed to bundle him in the car and get him to the vet's office...at which time he had completely recovered and the vet couldn't really determine what had happened.

As time went on, we managed to record an episode...we went back to the vet and they determined that he had mild epilepsy...not uncommon in goldens.  They put him on a six-month regimen of anti-seizure meds and told us to keep track of any episodes.  After six months, he had only had one very quick, very mild attack.  So we went back for his checkup and the vet said we'd keep him on this medication.
However, the cost of the medication had gone up significantly...when they gave us the 6-months supply, the cost had been about $70.  Now, a one-month supply was gonna run about $60 at the vet's office. The vet tech on hand suggested that I call around local pharmacies and see what their cash price would be.
I did...and CVS (where we humans in our family get our meds filled) had the lowest price...$16.29 for a month.
The vet gave me the written prescription and I dropped it off.  The pharmacy chick asked me what Simba's birthday was...I told her I wasn't sure on the exact date...but that he'd been born in November of 2010...so she tells me that she's just gonna put 11-01-10 into the system.  I told her fine...that I'd be by the next day to pick it up.

Next day, new pharmacy chick:

Me: I'd like to pick up a prescription I dropped off yesterday for Arensmeyer

PC: Yes ma'am.  Oh...you should know that your insurance didn't cover this.

Me: I know.  Simba isn't on my insurance.

PC: Oh. Okay.  Well, I need his driver's license number, because Phenobarbital is a controlled substance.

Me: Simba is my dog. He's also only five.  Either way, no driver's license.

PC: Well, I have to have a driver's license number.

Me: Why don't I give you mine?

PC: He has to be a family member.

Me: He's my DOG.

PC: But this is a controlled substance.

Me: Can you use my driver's license number if I say I'm his mother?

PC: Yes, but your insurance will probably still not cover it.

Me: (sigh) I understand.  BECAUSE HE'S A DOG. It's okay. Don't try to run it through insurance.

PC: I really am supposed to have some identification for the patient.

Me: (Heavy sigh) Well, he's a dog, so he doesn't have any identification.

PC: What is your son's Date of Birth?

Me: (Heavier sigh) November 2010.

Hope it's not this complicated every month.


  1. Bwahaha... this cracked me up. I had a similar situation when my cat had to go on Prozac. We have CVS for a pharmacy, as well. Painful. Just painful.

    1. This was my first time filling a pet prescription at a regular pharmacy. I didn't even know you could do that.