About Us

Pet Apothecary: A Compounding Pet Pharmacy

The Pet Apothecary was opened by Wisconsin pharmacists Jeff and Patti Langer, a husband and wife team, in 1999. They saw the need for a pet pharmacy, a need that was not being met by other pharmacies around the state or even country.

A pet compounding pharmacy is a very specialized branch of the profession. It requires an understanding of the pet animal needs, together with an understanding of the physiology and pharmacology of these patients.

Most medicines today are manufactured for the human patient and while the same medicines can and often are used on animal patients the dosages and the dosage forms, of necessity must be different. In the first place the size and weight of humans varies considerably with that of most of our pets but that is not the only consideration. Some animals eliminate medicines from their systems at different rates. As a result the dosages must be adjusted accordingly. Some medicines simply act in different ways in different species of animals.

The Pet Apothecary specializes in preparing and compounding medicines suitable for your pet and in dosage forms appropriate for administration to your pet. Whether your pet is a dog, cat, ferret, bird or something more exotic, we can help! We’re the go-to pet compounding pharmacy for many veterinarians and pet owners.

The Pet Apothecary specializes in the preparation of veterinary custom prescriptions. Most medicines currently used in the treatment of animals were originally manufactured for human use. They are therefore generally not ideal for our pets’ needs. They may be either too strong for our smaller pets or too weak for our bigger pets. It is also true that not all species will react in the same way to the same medication. For that reason such medicines may need to be altered before being dispensed for animal use. If you have a pet compounding medication need, please do not hesitate to contact us. We’re happy to help you!

You can order refills online – Click Here


Jeff Langer, Pharmacist, Owner

Position: Pharmacist and owner
Year started: 1999 (the year he opened the business)
Favorite animal: Fan of all species
Pet(s): One dog, Reuben (co-owned with Patti Langer)

Biography: For Jeff, being a pharmacist was a natural career choice. His grandfather, father, uncle and first cousin are all pharmacists, and so is his wife, Patti, whom he married in 1979, just three years after graduating from the School of Pharmacy at UW-Madison. He continued on to graduate school where he focused his studies on dosage formulations for animals. In 1978, while still in school, he began his career working at Stein Drugstore. A year later was hired into the family business, Jack Langer Pharmacy and Gifts. He loved the job and noticed a need for filling prescriptions for veterinary clinics. He worked to get their attention and business, and over time he did. Then in 1995, he and his dad sold the company but negotiated being able to dedicate one pharmacy to the treatment of animals using compounded products.

Jeff and Patti took a few years off from that business (They have two grown children Aaron and Marci.) and in 1999 together opened The Pet Apothecary. She helps manage and direct business, while he continues to provide medications to patients and helping to improve their condition. “Whether treating human or non-human patients, I am proud to be a pharmacist, and I enjoy talking with the clients to better understand their concerns, and then addressing them,” he says.

Since the beginning, his goal has been to provide assistance to veterinarians to obtain medication that was either difficult to get, tasted terrible, or was hard to dose. He says he has always been concerned about customer service and has made it the top priority at The Pet Apothecary. “Together our staff works very hard to insure each customer is satisfied in every way and that excellent quality products are used to treat pets,” he says. “We do our best to listen to our clients,” which has helped him to develop a product line that includes transdermal gels, oral suspensions and many other dosage forms.

Now with years of experience behind him, he knows the ins-and-outs of treating eagles, penguins, hippos, llamas, ferrets, rats, reindeer and rabbits and of course, cats and dogs. Jeff, a longtime member of Pharmacy Society of Wisconsin, was named Pharmacist of the Year in 2010 by Phi Delta Chi, the fraternity for pharmacists. “We constantly get questions regarding the possibility of treating a condition that I’ve not thought of, or using a medication in a way that we have not done before, which is great for me. I thrive on that kind of challenge,” he says. “Plus work provides the capital to do good things and give back to the community.” Jeff is a proud owner of the successful pet compounding pharmacy, the Pet Apothecary.


Valerie Klippel, Pharmacist

Position: Pharmacist
Year started: 2011
Favorite animal: Cat
Pet(s): Hamilton, a cat and Tucker, a dog

Biography: Valerie has a bachelor’s degree in biology from UW-Madison and graduated magna cum laude from the pharmacy school at Midwestern University. She has an integral role answering  patient questions, talking with vets, checking prescriptions for accuracy and helping compounding technicians make some of the medications. She was a pharmacist at a local CVS, a company that honored her at its 2012 national conference with a Paragon Award. According to Valerie, “I like helping people and enjoy my job because it is rewarding. I’m able to ensure people and their pets receive proper medication and appropriate drug information.”

Valerie lives with her husband and they have one daughter.


Bob Thompson, Pharmacist

Raised in suburban Milwaukee County Interested in sports and Nature. At one time had multiple pets which included 2 Red tailed hawks, 2 sparrow hawks, 2 raccoons, 2 deer and multiple turtles, frogs and anything that happened to wonder into the yard

Education Graduated high school with interest in anything medically related and graduated from the University of Wisconsin school of pharmacy. Played sports (football and basketball) in high school and some football in college

Works history Worked the first 10 years in small independent pharmacies the last 7 as a nursing home consultant with 1000 beds
Spent next 8 years working at Froedtert Hospital. Established a clinical program specializing in the kinetic dosing of amino-glycosides. Published several articles dealing with quality control issues. Also helped develop dosing of cyclosporin which lead to patent on cyclosporin dosing in chocolate. Also published an article on drug error rate in an intensive care unit to try and bring computerized iv pumps to the intensive care setting
Spent next 18 years working in the pharmaceutical industry as a specialized representative selling to hospitals and education of medical students and residents.
Ended full time career working as a nuclear pharmacist for GE for 6 years
Currently working part time for The Pet Apothecary and the Wisconsin Health fund.
Interests Mainly golf with some high school buddies and biking Swimming and running with some limited activity in short triathlons. Can usually be found on Wednesdays meeting with a group of friends discussing investments, current events(no politics allowed) and mainly the advantages and disadvantages of high end scotch. The conclusion after over 30 years of discussion,there are no disadvantages. Enjoy travel and spending time with the grandkids. By the way, have been married for almost 40 years with 5 and 3/4 grandkids.

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Amanda Cornils

Position: Compounding Technician (makes and mixes medications for pets and zoo animals)
Year started: 2012
Favorite animal: Panda bears

Biography: Working at The Pet Apothecary gives Amanda a sense of purpose. She says it’s gratifying to know she has a hand in extending and improving the quality of life for animals, no matter how big or small, and she’s proud to tell her daughter about the work she does. Before joining The Pet Apothecary, Amanda worked in customer service at various private companies and country clubs.


Kerry Gengler

Position: Book keeper
Year started: 2008
Favorite animal: Monkey

Biography: This mom of three daughters lives in Wauwatosa. She adores spending her day with her Pet Apothecary coworkers and also enjoys clients’ stories about making a difference in the lives of the client’s pets. “We get thanked all the time, which is very rewarding,” she says. “At the end of the day, I can honestly say, I love my job.”


Karen Schweiss

Position: Compounding technician

Biography: Karen is a certified veterinary technician. She worked in a small animal clinics in southeastern Wisconsin for 28 years. After retiring from practice, she joined the staff of the Pet Apothecary in 2010. Karen wanted to stay involved in the wellness of pets and now is compounding medications to keep them healthy. She has two dogs and one cat and loves to stay active with them. She also enjoys biking with her husband.

Catch her video in our FAQs teaching you how to apply a transdermal ear gel.


Brandy Grohall

Position: Compounding Technician
Year started: 2007
Favorite animal: Dog
Pet(s): A Rottweiler named Layla

Biography: Brandy, who volunteers at her church, is certified through the state of Wisconsin’s Pharmacy Technician Certification Board. Before compounding medications for pets, she worked at Walgreens for five years. Brandy says the most rewarding part of her job is hearing about customers’ pets and actually seeing the pets in the office, including Reuben, the office dog.


Patti Langer, RPh

Position: Pharmacist
Year started: 1999
Favorite animal: Dog
Pet(s): A dog named Rueben (co-owned with Jeff Langer)

Biography: The Pet Apothecary was born in Patti’s mind in 1995 after seeing a need for providing medications to pets and to zoo animals. Patti graduated from UW-Madison in 1978, and has worked in both the human and veterinary pharmacy fields, but prefers providing information on drug interactions and disease care management. She lives with her husband, Jeff. They have two children AJ and Marci, both are married. AJ and his wife have twin boys. Marci and her husband have one son. Her passions are sewing, reading and Reuben.


Phil Rickun

Position: Compounding technician
Started: February, 2014

Biography: Phil was raised in Madison, Wisconsin. He received his bachelors degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in Marketing.


Rueben

Position: Office dog
Year started: July, 2010
Favorite animal: Dog

Biography: Rueben’s been coming to the office several times a week for a couple years now. He watches the door and gives customers a friendly, welcoming nod as they enter.


Jacque Schutkin

Position: Mailer
Year started: 2007
Favorite animal: Giraffe
Pet(s): One dog named Coozee

Biography: Jacque is the one who comes up with the jokes you see written on your invoices. She graduated from Nicolet High School and has been honored for the work she does as a volunteer at Friendship Circle, a program that partners special needs children and adults with others in the community to provide friendship and support. She enjoys working at Pet Apothecary, her first job, because she’s always has someone to talk to and has supportive co-workers.


Nichole Zarling

Position: Compounding Technician
Year started: 2007
Favorite animal: Dog
Pet(s): Two dogs, Moose and Bandit; and two cats, Buzz and Sassy

Biography: Nichole, a pharmacy technician for 16 years, is also an EMT with the Cedarburg Fire Department. She lives on a working beef and hog farm with her husband and six children and is involved with 4H in Ozaukee County. Working at The Pet Apothecary gives her the opportunity to make a difference in other people’s lives, which is what she likes best about her job.

Compounding Customized Medications to Solve Dosage & Administration Problems.