Introduction to Transdermal Medications

Transdermal cream medications have a wide range of benefits when it comes to treating ailments and conditions in domestic pets.

Delivering medication through the skin avoids first-pass metabolism, gastrointestinal drug absorption issues, and has a steady infusion over a longer period. It can also be effective for owners struggling with compliance as the medication is applied onto furless areas of the pets’ skin.

Providing the option of transdermal medications for cats and dogs can be an advantage for your clinic. These are some of the most commonly requested transdermal creams.

Mirtazapine Transdermal Cream

Mirtazapine Transdermal Cream is a prescription anti-depressant medication specially formulated to treat cats and dogs suffering from anxiety, depression, loss of appetite, anorexia, nausea, vomiting or other mood-related disorders. The cream is easily absorbed through the skin, making it an efficient delivery method for administering Mirtazapine. It is safe and effective, providing just the right amount of medication quickly and conveniently with minimal discomfort to your pet. Furthermore, since there are no pills or injections involved with this form of treatment, there is no need to worry about your pet accidentally ingesting too much.

  • Literature: Significant improvement in appetite with 7.5 mg transdermal compared to transdermal placebo (Benson et al., 2016).

Tramadol Transdermal Cream

Tramadol transdermal cream is an opioid painkiller drug used to treat cats or dogs with acute trauma or injury, including surgery, and chronic pain, such as osteoarthritis and cancer.

  • Literature: Studies showed that as compared to oral bioavailability of tramadol, which is 60%, the mean total absorption with transdermal delivery is 100.4%. Transdermal delivery also demonstrated higher total absorption and steadier decline in rate of absorption. (Bassani et al., 2015)

Methimazole Transdermal Cream

Transdermal cream methimazole is used to treat an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism) in cats.

  • Literature: Once-daily application of transdermal methimazole applied to the pinnae was as effective and safe as twice-daily oral carbimazole in the treatment of cats with hyperthyroidism. (Hill et al., 2011)

Other transdermal creams we compound include prednisolone, gabapentin, amitriptyline and chlorpheniramine.

How to Apply Transdermal Cream?

If you need any advice on veterinary transdermal medications, get in touch with our friendly team of specialist veterinary pharmacists today.


1. Bassani, August & Banov, Daniel & Simmons, Chris & Phan, Ha. (2015). In vitro characterization of the percutaneous absorption of tramadol into inner ear domestic feline skin using the Franz skin finite dose model. Veterinary Medicine and Animal Sciences. 3. 10.7243/2054-3425-3-3.

2. Benson, K. K., Zajic, L. B., Morgan, P. K., Brown, S. R., Hansen, R. J., Lunghofer, P. J., Wittenburg, L. A., Gustafson, D. L., & Quimby, J. M. (2017). Drug exposure and clinical effect of transdermal mirtazapine in healthy young cats: a pilot study. Journal of feline medicine and surgery, 19(10), 998-1006.

3. Hill, K. E., Gieseg, M. A., Kingsbury, D., Lopez-Villalobos, N., Bridges, J., & Chambers, P. (2011). The efficacy and safety of a novel lipophilic formulation of methimazole for the once daily transdermal treatment of cats with hyperthyroidism. Journal of veterinary internal medicine, 25(6), 1357-1365.