Tuesday, 28 October 2014

08:52 – Mornings have been getting chillier around here, with overnight lows often in the 40’s (5 to 10 C). The weekly forecast in the morning paper says our low Saturday will be 31F (-0.5C), our first freeze of the season.

Kit sales have slowed way down, as expected this time of year, and will probably remain slow through late November. Then they’ll pick up in December and into January as people buy kits for Christmas and the start of the new semester. As usual, we’re trying to maintain a month’s worth of all kits in stock, which this time of year is a total of only a few dozen.

I just ordered a fresh supply of antibiotics for biology kits yesterday from a veterinary/pet supplies vendor. As I was checking out, a message popped up asking me to provide my email address (which they already had) in return for a 10% discount on my first order. So I entered my email address and answered the question about what I was interested in (dogs, sheep, cattle, horses, fish, and chickens, which is what the antibiotics I ordered were intended for). During checkout, I kept expecting them to give me a coupon code or just enter the 10% discount, but when I clicked what turned out to be the last “Continue” icon, I got a screen thanking me for my order. Hmmm. So I called the 800 number and told the lady what had happened. She applied the code on her end.

As we were talking, I noticed on of those “you might also like” items for ivermectin, an antihelminthic. Colin gets ivermectin in the form of HeartGuard to prevent heartworm. The stuff is prescription only and isn’t cheap, so I asked the lady if they did the same thing as our current vendor, faxing in a form to our vet to get the prescription. She said they didn’t sell anything that required a prescription. I mentioned the ivermectin, and she said, “Oh, that’s for horses. No prescription necessary.”

Colin gets one HeartGuard pill the first of each month. Each pill contains only micrograms of ivermectin and costs $6 or $8. So I checked the ivermectin offerings at this new vendor. They had one item for $1.99, a syringe tube of oral ivermectin sufficient to treat up to 1,250 pounds of horse. Hmmm. Assuming the canine and equine doses are similar by body weight, that’s about 18 doses for Colin, or roughly $0.11 per dose rather the $6 to $8 per dose. I mentioned this to Barbara last night and she said NFW, we’ll continue buying the $6 or $8 per pill stuff for Colin.