Medication Guide

Helpful Tips and Guidelines

Patients will often need several eye medications administered multiple times daily to treat some common conditions we see in our office. Here are some guidelines to help you make the best of your pet’s treatment regimen.

Give solutions (drops) first, then ointments, then lubricants. Wait at least 5 minutes between each medication.
Administering eye medication in this order prevents ointments from blocking the absorption of solutions. Oily drops such as Cyclosporine Solution will need a longer wait time (10-15 minutes) before the next medication. Lubricants such as GenTeal Gel and i-Drop Vet should be given last.

Administering topical eye medications:

Securing your pet
To keep your pet from backing away from you, it helps to have a wall behind him while you hold him still. Smaller pets can be elevated to a table or countertop for easier administration. Cats, small dogs, and birds can be wrapped in a towel with their heads peeking out to keep them calm and secure.

Administering Drops
Use one hand to elevate the nose and tip it up, then use your fingers to pull down the lower lid. With the heel of your other hand, push up on the skin above the eye to lift the upper lid. Use this hand to administer the medication, making sure the drop makes contact with the eyeball.

Applying Ointments
You will only need a small amount of ointment per dosage – a string about 1/8 of an inch long. Using the same eye-opening technique described above, apply ointments to the inside of either lid at the center of the lid. Once applied, gently open and close the  eyelid to be sure the ointment coats the eyeball.

A Step-by-Step Guide to giving drops from Doctors Foster & Smith

Always ask your doctor before changing or discontinuing prescribed eye medications.
Continue giving medications the morning of your follow-up appointments unless otherwise directed, and please bring all of your medications with you for appointments and surgeries.

Download and print our Medicating Tips & Guidelines (PDF)

Medication Schedules

We know juggling multiple medications given several times a day can be quite an undertaking. We have a helpful fill-in schedule that can show you at-a-glance when and where to administer medications.

Download and print our blank Medication Schedule (PDF)
Filled-out Example Schedule (PDF)

Prescription Refills

There are several ways to contact our office for a medication refill. Please be sure to include all necessary information with your request to prevent any delay in receiving your medications.

Please note: we cannot fill medications for pets that we have never examined, have not examined within a year, or that have experienced changes to their eyes and have not been re-evaluated by their ophthalmologist. Please visit American Veterinary Medical Association‘s website about veterinary pharmacy/prescription regulations for more information.

VET/Client-Patient Relationship

Online: Medication Refill Form
By Phone: (615) 690-939
By Email:

Medications can be mailed to your address, called in to your local pharmacy, or picked up from our office, depending on the type of medication. If you leave a message, please include:

If we don’t have this information, we won’t be able to process your request until we get back in touch with you! We aim to handle all medication requests promptly, but due to our postal carrier schedule, mail orders received after 11 a.m. may not be mailed out until the next business day.

Prescription Refill Policy

We always honor client requests for written prescriptions.

We also provide prescription refill authorizations to pharmacies if the patient has been seen by our doctors within the last year (with the doctor’s approval). If you are requesting a prescription refill directly from a pharmacy, VOS will not release any billing information to the pharmacy. If we receive an authorization form from a pharmacy that is missing client billing information, we will call the client to let them know to contact the pharmacy directly to provide that information.

Important Note About Compounded Medications

Pharmaceutical regulations require that compounded (specially made) medications be sent to you directly from the compounding pharmacy. To order refills, please contact our office 7-10 days before you run out of these medications to allow for processing and shipping times. We will put the order in to our compounding pharmacy, who will mail the medication to you directly. We are not allowed to dispense these medications to you from our office except on an emergency basis.

Note About Online Pharmacies

Due to quality concerns, we do not recommend using online pharmacies to refill medications. We cannot guarantee that the drugs you receive will be properly formulated, which can hinder or complicate the treatment of your pet’s eyes. However, we will fax prescriptions to the pharmacy you choose at your request.


We are able to refund medications that are unopened and still sealed by the manufacturer. We are not able to refund medications that are opened or lack a manufacturer’s seal, such as compounded medications and individual tablets or capsules. These include (but are not limited to):

Please contact our office if you have questions concerning refunds.