Can You Spot a Fake?

May 13, 2023

Parasite prevention saves lives. Your pet needs to be on parasite prevention.

The products we carry, recommend, and use on our own pets are effective and safe. They’ve been thoroughly researched and tested. Used properly and year-round, prevention products will protect your pet from all kinds of bad things: heartworms, fleas, ticks, intestinal parasites—and the serious medical issues, and even death, that can come from them.

But your pet will be completely unprotected, and totally at risk if the product is fake. Worse yet, fake products can even make your pet sick. And if your fur baby does get a parasitic infection or fall ill, you have no recourse to cover the treatment. Sadly, there are lots of fake products out there.

Buy From the Best

Counterfeit prevention products are a real concern, acknowledged, and tracked by the FDA. We strongly recommend getting your pet’s parasite prevention (and all medications) through Eno Animal Hospital. Our products come straight from the company and are guaranteed to be the genuine article.

We’re on a first-name basis with all our wonderful company representatives and have great relationships with them. They are dedicated, reliable, reachable, and simply love helping pets. We’re thoroughly informed of all product research and any updates or changes. Plus, in the extremely rare case your pet gets fleas, ticks, or any other parasite while properly on a product, the company will work with us to investigate the matter and cover the cost of treatment.

We carry numerous options both in-house and on our online store. Remember: Our online store IS Eno, just virtual. Everything is 100% guaranteed, and many providers offer rebates. A win-win for both you and your pet! Ask us for details.

How Do I Know a Product Is Fake?

The worst way to find out a product is fake? Your pet is stricken with the very thing you were trying to protect your pet from – fleas, ticks, or heartworms. This is all too common.

Sometimes we can correct this fairly easily and without disaster, if you act fast. A dog or cat on a fake flea prevention product shows a few fleas—we immediately treat your pet with a real product, and the fleas are gone from your pet within a few hours. But you still have to treat the entire household, plus every pet in your household, for fleas—no small feat.

And sometimes it’s heartbreaking. A dog on a fake heartworm product gets heartworms and has to endure painful treatment and risk his life, to be cured of heartworms. For cats, there is no treatment for heartworms.

Let’s not risk it! We never want you to get fooled by a fake product.

Easy to Get Fooled

We know you want the best for your pets. Many people who purchase prevention products from online or third-party sources truly believe they’re doing the right thing for their fur babies—and simply have no idea the products are fake.

Examples of getting fooled include:

  • Purchasing a product from what seems like a legitimate source, only to have it arrive from a different country in a different package
  • Purchasing products from a reputable and well-known source in general, such as Amazon, only to find out the counterfeiters fooled Amazon, too
  • Purchasing what looks like a genuine package with the name of a real product, only to find the tube or foil packet inside has a different name
  • Purchasing a product that really looks genuine, only to find out the real product design was changed several years ago

A huge red flag is any packaging with a language other than English. Packaging may also have random icons in the name, like a heart instead of an “a” in “Heartgard.” Poorly designed packaging, such as wavy lines or crooked lettering, is another dead giveaway.

Sometimes the product is obviously a bad knock-off…but only once you get it out of the real-looking packaging. For instance, a Seresto collar that is flimsy, clumsy, or very light gray is fake for sure. You just have to know what you’re looking for! We can help.

The Real Deal

Counterfeiters are good at what they do. Many packages are eerily similar to the real thing. But there are differences. Real products:

  • Have genuine EPA registration numbers, which you can check on their database
  • Must, by law, contain identical and consistent labeling, both outside and inside
  • Are usually childproof, and difficult to open
  • Usually include reminder stickers
  • Have a high-quality design and minimum price set by the company
a painting of a dog
Is this Seresto collar real? (No.)

For example, the makers of Seresto set a minimum price for what anyone can legally sell Seresto, not including any rebate, at $53.99. This ensures if you ever see a Seresto collar for sale for anything less than $53.99, you know immediately it’s fake. (The price of real Seresto collars will vary depending on size, and please understand the price may be slightly higher than $53.99 to cover our cost of carrying them.)

Remember: All heartworm prevention requires a veterinarian prescription. If you find heartworm prevention online that does not require a prescription to order, that’s a no-go.

On a real product, the serial number, identification, information, design, colors, logo, and labeling must be exactly the same across the board: in the same place, the same way, every time. If you buy a box of prevention and any detail isn’t exactly the same as the one you bought before, from us, you’ve got a fake.

The makers of real products put extensive time and effort into their packaging, and often change their designs regularly to try to stay ahead of fakes. If you’d like to see what a real product looks like, we can show you!

An Ounce of (Real) Prevention Is Worth a Pound of Cure

We understand parasite prevention costs money, and sometimes the cost even seems prohibitive. We also understand the temptation to get a really good deal. But some things really are too good to be true.

Pet parents who purchase cheap products might find any saving is wiped out—and then have to spend in spades—when that product turns out to be fake and their fur baby gets fleas or heartworms or tick-borne disease. The expense of prevention is dwarfed in comparison to what it costs to treat a parasitic infection.

Parasite prevention is an investment in the life of your pet. The only way to know for sure your pet is protected, and you haven’t wasted your money, is to buy through your trusted veterinarian. If you think a product might be fake, we’re happy to help investigate and answer your questions.

A Final Thought

We’re a local family business and greatly appreciate your support! We also respect your right to purchase products elsewhere…but please be careful. It is heartbreaking for pet parents to hear a diagnosis of heartworms when they thought their pets were protected.

We’re not veterinary professionals for the money; we’re here to help pets live their very best lives. Just let us know what you need!

We’re a Fear Free hospital because Fear Free is best medicine.