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Tasty 'Treats to Treat': Improving Compliance Through Palatable Soft Chews

Tasty 'Treats to Treat': Improving Compliance Through Palatable Soft Chews

Non-compliance with recommended treatment is a common concern in veterinary medicine. Human medical literature estimates an average patient compliance rate of 50%1, with similar rates presumed in veterinary medicine2. Compliance is at a level which means that millions of pets receive inadequate levels of care.

Poor compliance with treatment recommendations can have a significant impact on patient outcome. It can lead to failure to manage the patient's primary clinical complaint, failure to prevent disease, increased risk of antimicrobial resistance, loss of confidence in the veterinarian or in veterinary medicine in general, to name a few.

There are many reasons why pet owners may not adhere to drug compliance, ranging from misunderstanding the instructions, to cost, side effects, and difficulty administering medication.

Giving medication to a pet can be challenging, especially if they are not cooperative. Increasingly, animal health companies have started to develop more convenient drug delivery methods including paying close attention to the palatability of orally administered products.

Palatable soft chew drug delivery technology helps improve compliance significantly. Through use of these tasty 'Treats to Treat', pet owners can easily administer a variety of critical medications to their pets to minimise stress for everyone involved. Effective dosing leads to better outcomes.

Our team in Lawrence, Kansas, USA, is the centre of excellence for soft chew development at Argenta. The new laboratory-scale soft chew extruder can easily screen a variety of conditions with one starting blend.

The Argenta soft chew matrices offer a highly flexible formulation and manufacturing process. One of the key benefits is that the soft chews have a very low water activity (no added water), contributing to a product with an excellent shelf-life. There is also very little heat generated in the manufacturing process, meaning that a wide range of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) can be incorporated into the matrices, including APIs that would otherwise be incompatible with other manufacturing techniques.

The soft chews can be formulated for immediate release in the stomach or for delayed release in the small intestine. Added to this, there is flexibility in terms of drug loading, allowing for single or combination APIs to be incorporated into the soft chew matrices. The flavours and textures can also easily be tailored to different species. With all of these benefits it is also reassuring to know that the soft chew matrices are protected by broad formulation and process patents.

If you would like to discuss this novel drug delivery technology in more detail, please contact us here.

The New Leistritz Micro ZSE-18 Twin-Screw Extruder

Pharmaceutical Sciences Capabilities at Lawrence, Kansas, USA:

  • Soft chew matrices (tasty 'Treats to Treat')
  • Sterile injectables (including biologics such as monoclonal antibodies)
  • Controlled-release microspheres
  • In situ thermosetting gels
  • Tablets
  • Capsules
  • Transdermal solutions

1. World Health Organization. Adherence to long-term therapies: evidence for action. 2003. (accessed 20th April 2023)

2. Maddison J, Cannon M, Davies R et al. Owner compliance in veterinary practice: recommendations from a roundtable discussion. Companion Animal. 2021, Volume 26, Issue Sup6 (accessed 20th April 2023)

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