Currently there is a lack of new active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) appearing on the veterinary market. In the short term this problem can be offset by developing controlled release drug delivery technologies to extend the commercial life of existing drugs. However, such a commercial opportunity does not come without its challenges. These generally revolve around financial factors, which include limited budgets assigned to conduct veterinary R, the costcompetitive amount that can be charged for the finished product and the expensive time-consuming registration process. In addition, the gap between the perceived and actual market needs makes the return on investment hard to defend. It is not surprising therefore that few controlled release products appear on the market for farmed animals, despite their potential advantages to that sector. The landscape for an academic veterinary pharmaceutical scientist is quite different from that of the industrial one. When you remove the commercial requirement associated with product development, there are numerous fundamental and applied research opportunities, with the outcome of demonstrating the potential worth, or otherwise, of an approach being sufficient to achieve the major goal of academics, publication in peer-reviewed journals. A further opportunity arises when controlled release dosage forms are used as research tools to forward knowledge in the area of animal science. The aim of this review is to provide a perspective of the current animal health industry through examination of the commercial challenges per se, along with the potential for academic collaboration that lie within this demanding area of pharmaceutical science.