As companion animals become a more important part of our lives, their health and wellbeing become more important, too. So, it’s no surprise that the compounded treatments that veterinarians use are more a more important parts of their practice.

dogCompounding pharmacies provide animal owners with two important services.

  1. They can mix medicines that are not available to animals or aren’t available in the right form or dosage. As in human care, animal illnesses or conditions sometimes require specialized treatment. Compounding supplies the right medicine when it’s needed.
  2. Compounding can combine medications into a single-dose formula. Veterinary compounding makes it possible to combine two or more drugs into single-dose products. This approach helps animals that resist taking medicine by:
    • Making it easier to give an animal its medication.
    • Eliminating the risk of missed doses.
    • Replacing bad-tasting components with a tasty flavor that make your animal take its medicine.

This makes it much easier to keep animals on track with their treatment. And, it takes the work out of managing medications and refills.

Dogs and Cats

Compounding provides customized treatment for a wide range of conditions in cats and dogs.

dog and catThese medicines include:

  • Capsules and tablets, the bane of every cat or dog owner’s existence.
  • Liquids and powders mixed with slurries of a pet’s favorite canned food.
  • Flavored chewable treats that tempt reluctant pets to take their medicine.
  • Liquid concentrates that improve energy and nutrition.
  • Ear drops that fight ear mites.
  • Dusting powders that kill fleas and ticks.
  • Gels, creams or ointments that treat skin conditions.
  • Injectable liquids delivered to the pet’s blood and tissues.
  • Gels administered by gently rubbing the inside of a pet’s ear.


Veterinary best practices advise that horse owners compound medicines only at the direction of a veterinary. Some veterinarians advise owners to limit compounding to cases when an FDA-approved drug does not exist or is unusable for a specific horse’s case.

horseCompounding pharmacies with veterinary experience customize medicines for horses with:

  • Adrenal insufficiency (adrenal glands release low levels of one or more hormones)
  • Cancer
  • Heart failure
  • Inflammations

Using compounded medications reduces the time and effort needed to medicate a horse. And it avoids the risk of a horse getting too much or too little medicine.


In the United States, there are many species of exotic pets. Fish, rabbits, turtles, and hamsters are the most common exotics (companion animals that are not dogs, cats or horses.) Unfortunately, there are very few commercial medicines to treat them. That’s why customizing compounded medications for exotics makes sense.

Your veterinary can work with a compounding pharmacist to develop a customized medicine for exotic pets. This approach reduces side effects and eliminates the stress of giving your pet its medicine.

exotic birdUsually, treating exotic pets with compounded medicines:

  • Uses customized delivery methods such as treats, topical gels and flavored oral suspensions.  These delivery methods can make medicating your pet easier, more pleasant, and potentially more effective.
  • Tailored doses and forms to a pet’s size and medical needs. This approach maximizes the chance of a good outcome and potentially reduces the risk of side effects.
  • Combines compounds to form a customized medication. This can speed the healing process and eliminate the need to switch from one therapy to another.