Covetrus Pleads Guilty to Criminal Misbranding of Veterinary Prescription Drugs

Covetrus North America LLC, a company based in Dublin, Ohio, which sells veterinary products to customers across the United States, pled guilty today to causing the introduction and delivery of misbranded veterinary prescription drugs into interstate commerce. As part of the agreement, Covetrus will pay over $23 million in criminal fines and forfeitures according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Western District of Virginia dated February 12, 2024.

UPDATED: March 6, 2024


Covetrus to pay $23M in fines for misbranded drugs (3.5.24)

  • The shipments in question from Covetrus failed to include adequate directions for use and, therefore, were misbranded. The prescription drugs were also distributed to unauthorized customers, according to court documents. No information was given on the types of drugs that were sent, their quantity, or who the unauthorized recipients were, though, they included personal accounts.
    • Misbranded and unauthorized prescription drugs can lead to incorrect dosages, adverse reactions, and ineffective treatment, potentially causing harm to animals and leading to public health risks, according to the Food and Drug Administration.

Company pleads guilty to misbranding veterinary prescription drugs (2.14.24)

  • Covetrus provides prescription services for more than 12,000 practices, largely by providing online pharmacy services for veterinary practices. According to Covetrus, “We fully cooperated with the U.S. Attorney’s office, and we are committed to complying with federal and state laws related to prescription veterinary medication,” the company said in a statement.


Veterinary technology and services company expands strategic partnership with veterinary network (10.3.23)

  • Covetrus signed a multi-year strategic alignment with Vetcor, a veterinary network of over 840 locations in the US and Canada.

Covetrus Expands GreatPetCare Further Unifying Connected Care Solutions for Veterinarians and Pet Parents (7.20.23)

  • “With GreatPetCare, Covetrus is revolutionizing the way veterinarians engage with pet parents by integrating personalized health and wellness information and tools with client communication, prescription management and customized care plans, thereby enabling veterinarians to extend care beyond the exam room.”

Practice manager calls out Covetrus for ‘icky’ promotion (5.15.23)

  • Great Pet Care was purchased last year by Covetrus. The email promoted the new service to a select group of pet owners — clients who buy medications and other products through clinic-branded online pharmacies, like Collier’s, that are run by Covetrus.

Covetrus to go private in $4 billion sale (5.27.22)

  • Company formed from 2019 merger of Henry Schein Animal Health and Vets First Choice. As Covetrus, the new company counted 90% of U.S. veterinary practices as consumers in some capacity (with customers in Canada, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, China and Brazil, as well), according to information provided by Covetrus.

Covetrus to Acquire Veterinary Care Plans (7.2.21)

  • Veterinary Care Plans (VCP), which administers pet wellness programs on behalf of 1,000 clinics, has agreed to be acquired by Covetrus. The pet wellness programs will be integrated into Covetrus’ practice information management systems.


Home delivery, autoship important offerings for veterinary clients (2.27.24)

  • According to the Brakke survey, three-quarters of veterinarians said they have an online pharmacy and a majority said they actively promote it.
  • Average sales for veterinary clinic online stores doubled from 2017-21, and then doubled again from 2021-23.