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Natural Awakenings Chicago

Pets Benefit from Custom-Compounded Pharmaceuticals

Feb 24, 2015 09:17PM ● By Kelsey Smith, Pharm.D. RPh

We want our pets to receive the highest-quality veterinary care and treatment, as advanced and up-to-date as we would expect to receive ourselves, and veterinarians do acknowledge that owners expect this level of care for their pets. Compounding, or the creation of a particular pharmaceutical product to fit the unique needs of a patient, also offers valuable benefits to pets. Indeed, for many years, compounding pharmacies have provided solutions to veterinary problems.

Although veterinarians themselves are able to prepare many pet medications, animals often have variations of the same diseases and allergies that humans can have, including skin rashes, ear infections, heart conditions, cancer and arthritis that may require medications to be customized to fit the animal’s specific needs. As any pet owner is well aware, animals can be extremely difficult to treat, especially when it comes to giving oral medications. The infamous “kitty burrito” blanket wrapping technique used when giving a cat a pill, or even disguising medications in food, may prove to be unsuccessful more often than not, because most animals will eat around the tablets. Larger patients, such as farm animals, and exotic pets like reptiles or birds also pose unique medication challenges.

Animals may refuse to take medication because of its taste. Flavoring a pet’s medications is just one example of how a compounding pharmacy can serve the needs of the pet, because a dog would much prefer a liquid medication that tastes like bacon or beef or a medication incorporated into a tasty treat over a traditional-tasting solution. Exotic birds often will even accept a small dose of a fruit-flavored solution.

Some animals are unique because they need individualized medications. Pets may be sensitive to commercial medication ingredients such as lactose or dyes and need custom medications. This is when a compounding pharmacy is especially helpful, because they are able to work closely with a veterinarian to build a medication that is exactly tailored to the pet’s special needs and conditions. They can also prepare customized medications that may have been discontinued or unavailable at the time it is needed.


Recommendations or potential solutions to any customer medication issue can be discussed with Save-Rite Pharmacy & Compounding at the time of dispensing the prescription, pursuant to Professional Compounding Centers of America standards. Location: 3479 N. Broadway, in Chicago. For more information, call 773-525-0766.