Pets Need Meds Too!

General description, overview, opportunity:

The number of household pets has significantly increased over the last several decades. Since the 1970's that number has nearly tripled from 67 million to 164 million households that own pets based on the most recent surveys (62% percent of homes). According to the American Pet Products Association, it is estimated that $60.59 billion will be spent on household pets in 2015, $14.39 billion of which will include supplies and OTC medications.

Offering pet medications including special compounded formulations as well as other pet care products is a great way to help differentiate your pharmacy. Pharmacists can help promote the safe use of pet medications by educating pet owners on proper use and storage and alerting them about possible side effects. Your pharmacy can collaborate with local veterinarians by providing products and services that may not be available at their practice setting. For example, many pet owners struggle with being able to give medications to their pets. Compounding is a solution, albeit a service that many veterinary practices do not offer. Stocking quality treats and proper grooming kits allows pet owners to have options outside of what is carried in a typical pet store. Offering all of these products and services could make your store a destination for the pet lovers in your community.

Commonly used medications for pets according to the American Veterinary Medical Association include:

  • Antibiotics


  • opioid pain relievers

  • steroids

  • anti-parasitic drugs

  • behavior modifying drugs and sedatives

  • hormone replacement therapy

  • chemotherapeutics

Types of pet services you can provide:

  • Compounding (i.e. treats, capsules, creams, suspensions, flavoring)

  • Specialty medications

  • Vitamins/supplements

  • Accessories (i.e. Pill pockets, grooming items, leashes, outfits, toys)

  • High end brands

  • Specialty foods including hypoallergenic products

  • Source of referral for pet sitting services

Companies Involved

Pharmacist Resources Links: