The animal body is similar to the human body in terms of structure and functioning parts, thus providing an incredible need for safe and effective treatments. Many of the products offered to the human pharmaceutical and device industry are identical or similar to those in the animal sector. For example, a number of antibiotics are approved for use in both human and animal indications, such as amoxicillin, penicillin, and erythromycin.
The $24 billion worldwide animal therapeutics and diagnostics market and the 7–8% annual growth rate are evidence of the demand and continued stability of the companion animal segment. This considerable market growth is due to the changing role of the companion animal over the last decade. Sales for companion animal products are expected to reach $12.1 billion by 2013, displaying average annual growth of 7.8% from 2008 through 2013.
Although companion-animal sales represent the fastest growth segment in the animal health market, the demand will begin to level off with increasing competition and price pressures.
The worldwide market for animal therapeutics and diagnostics includes a list of more than 350 competitors that compete in various worldwide markets and treatment areas. Companies such as Merial, Pfizer, and Intervet have a wide range of products and participate in several areas of the animal health industry.
There are several significant trends that continue to influence the companion-animal market. These include vaccination, animal obesity, new trends in pet aging, and companion-animal ownership.