Let's face it, owning a pet can be expensive.  Vaccines, insurance, visits to the vet and routine products like flea treatments and worming tables can all mount up, yet we can't afford not to take preventative healthcare measures.

I mentioned recently that purchasing pet-care items online can be a savvy way of saving money, and now there's a great web store from the long-established and trusted name in pet products, Bob Martin.

On the Bob Martin Vetcare site you can save money not only on their own branded products, but on many others recommended by your veterinary practitioner such as Drontal, Advocate, Metacam and Frontline.

Offering a wide range of healthcare and wellbeing products for both cats and dogs, this could be your one-stop-shop for all those care items we need to buy when our pets get sick or need routine treatment.

Some products are only available with a vet's prescription, but they will still probably work out cheaper than purchasing them at your veterinary practice. Others can be purchased without prescription and include a range of worming treatment, flea treatments, ear cleaners, grooming products and training pads.

If you've not purchased prescription medication in this way, it's worth noting that your vet is legally obliged to issue you with a prescription if your pet requires treatment.  You do not have to purchase it directly through your practice if you can find a better deal elsewhere.  Some practices will charge you a nominal fee for issuing a prescription, others issue free of charge and some charge around £10.  But with savings of over 50% on some items on the Bob Martin Vetcare site, it could be well worth it.

Sending your prescription over is straightforward. You can do it by post, email or fax and there are full details on their site.

So let's take an example and see how much you could save:

Cerenia travel sickness tablets for dogs have a recommended retail price of £52.42.

Bob Martin Vetcare sell them at just £23.23.

Even paying £10 for a prescription to be issued by your vet, you are still saving £19.19.

Now, we have to look at postage costs.  They offer free p&p on orders over £25 or on any order including a Bob Martin branded product, so it's probably worth popping some poop bags, vitamins or shampoo into your basket, otherwise you pay £3 for delivery.

There are some exceptions to the discounted p&p costs, including bulky items and medicines which need to be refrigerated, and you can find out more here.

Their Spring Grooming range smells lovely and we are trying out some of their coat cleaning wipes and no-rinse shampoo which are ideal for quick clean-ups at this wet and muddy time of the year.  They sent Delilah a lovely selection to try out - she was delighted with her mail which was serendipitously waiting for us after a particularly muddy walk! I can recommend popping some of these products into your basket.  The wet wipes are enriched with aloe vera and we've found them really handy for quick wipe-downs.

You can rest assured you're in good hands when ordering as Bob Martin is run by pet experts and pet owners and they work alongside the Veterinary Medicines Directorate as a licensed supplier of prescription and non-prescription medication. They also have a resident vet available to answer any queries or concerns you may have.

My advice would be to bear them in mind next time you visit your vet and do a quick comparison of costs on your mobile before you pay out in your practice.

Let me know about any money-saving you manage to achieve using the site! And to help you save even more, I can exclusively offer you 10% off your order, simply use code BMblogSTNIO (this code can only be used once per customer).

Thank you Bob Martin Vetcare for Delilah's treats!

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