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Administering your dog or cat’s medication can prove to be quite difficult. Remember, some dogs and cats respond well to taking their medication, whereas others may give you a difficult time every dose! Here are some tips for giving your pet medicine:

How to Give your Pet a Pill

The best method to utilize when giving your dog or cat a pill is through their favorite food or snack. Pills can be hidden inside a piece of canned food, peanut butter, cheese or other treats. A great way to disguise pills is through Greenie Pill Pockets, which your pet may mistake as a tasty treat instead of medication. Prior to utilizing this technique though, it is important to ask your veterinarian if your pet’s medication can be administered with food.

Geting a Pet to take Liquid Medicine

When providing your dog or cat with liquid medication, you should begin by filling the syringe with the medication where your pet is not able to see you. Then, place one hand over your pet’s muzzle with your thumb on one side and your fingers on the other. Your ‘free’ hand should be utilized to hold the syringe.

Following these steps, insert the syringe between your dog or cat’s teeth, then close their mouth while tilting their head back slowly. Be certain to administer the medication in a manner it will slide down the back of their tongue. To assist your dog or cat in taking the medication, very lightly stroke their throat.

If you do not want to use the above technique with liquid medication, you can try to insert the medication into a small amount of canned dog food and water. Be certain to make the dog food gravy-like with water prior to squirting in the oral medication.

Giving a Cat Liquid Medication

If your cat is giving you a hard time, there is an alternative method you could try. An alternative idea for cats is to squirt the medication on their foreleg. Cats do not like to be messy and will often lick the medication off of their leg. Do not try this method with dogs. As many of you know, some dogs do not mind being messy.

If you’re a pet owner, it’s virtually guaranteed that you’ll have to give your pet medication at some point during its lifetime. Depending on the medication, this can be tricky, particularly with cats. We’re here to help get your pets the medication they need with minimal stress and/or damage.

More Tips for Giving a Cat a Pill

  • Ensure your arms, legs, and face are pretty much completely covered. Long sleeves, jeans, couldn’t hurt to try a beekeeper’s helmet or other protection for your head.
  • If you have a pill dispenser syringe (like this one), load it before approaching your cat. (If you’re administering liquid medication, fill your syringe or dropper first.)
  • Find a towel or blanket.
  • Approach your cat slowly and nonchalantly. Everything is fine. Nothing out of the ordinary.
  • Pick up you cat and hold its paws close to its body.
  • As gently but quickly as possible, wrap your cat in the towel or blanket. The cat should be wrapped securely but not so tightly that it is uncomfortable. The goal is to immobilize the paws and keep your cat’s razor-sharp talons from your (protected but still vulnerable) skin.
  • Really, just keep wrapping. Only your cat’s head should protrude from the bundle of cat and towel, like a cat burrito.
  • Hold onto your cat firmly.
  • Place the dispenser or syringe at the corner of your cat’s mouth.
  • Quickly apply firm pressure to the corner of the cat’s mouth to open, and swiftly insert the syringe or dropper to the back of the mouth. Push or squeeze to dispense medication.
  • If you’re using your fingers to administer a pill, start at the corner of the mouth and push all the way to the back of your cat’s mouth. Rub your cat’s throat to encourage swallowing.
  • Watch for your cat to lick its lips to be sure the medication has gone down the hatch.
  • Release the unhappy cat from its burrito wrap.

More Tips To Give a Dog a Pill

  • Wrap pill in bacon, cheese, lunchmeat, Pill Pocket, or really anything edible.
  • Give it to your dog.
  • Enjoy dog kisses.

Of course, there are many different ways to accomplish these tasks, so experiment and find what works for you and your pet. As always, check with your vet before administering any medications, and ask your pet insurance carrier if they’ll cover any prescriptions. Many pet insurance plans may cover medications depending on the policy and coverage.

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Nothing in this article should be construed as financial, legal or veterinary advice. Please consult your own advisors for questions relating to your and your pet’s specific circumstances.

1 Pet Insurance offered by MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is underwritten by Independence American Insurance Company (“IAIC”), a Delaware insurance company, headquartered at 485 Madison Avenue, NY, NY 10022, and Metropolitan General Insurance Company (“MetGen”), a Rhode Island insurance company, headquartered at 700 Quaker Lane, Warwick, RI 02886, in those states where MetGen’s policies are available. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is the policy administrator authorized by IAIC and MetGen to offer and administer pet insurance policies. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC was previously known as PetFirst Healthcare, LLC and in some states continues to operate under that name pending approval of its application for a name change. The entity may operate under an alternate, assumed, and/or fictitious name in certain jurisdictions as approved, including MetLife Pet Insurance Services LLC (New York and Minnesota), MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions Agency LLC (Illinois), and such other alternate, assumed, or fictitious names approved by certain jurisdictions.