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Addicts harm pets to obtain animal painkillers, vets say

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By Natalie Dreier

Cox Media Group National Content Desk

SINGERLANDS, N.Y. — Veterinarians in New York are concerned about pets in the area after cases in which drug addicts have intentionally hurt their pets to get their hands on a painkiller used for animals.

Tramadol was categorized as a controlled substance three years ago, WTEN reported. It is available only via prescription at pharmacies as a common treatment for pets suffering from arthritis.

Dr. Lexi Becker told WTEN that she has heard cases of pet owners intentionally injuring their animals and asking vets to prescribe tramadol, which is cheaper than oxycodone.

A law in New York allows vets to prescribe only a seven-day course of tramadol. If an owner calls for a quick refill, vets said that raises concerns. Regulations govern how quickly refills can be issued and how many refills are allowed.

Read more here.

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