How to Get Your Cat to Take Their Medication

How to Get Your Cat to Take Their Medication

If you’ve ever had to figure out how to get your cat to take their medication, you’ll know that it’s not an easy process. As a pet sitter, I’ve had to give my client’s cats medication several times. Even the nicest cat generally doesn’t just open wide and swallow without a bit of a fight.

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How to Get Your Cat to Take Their Medication

There are a few different ways that you can get your cat to take their medication. Which one you choose will depend on how friendly the cat is and whether or not you have a liquid or pill form medication.  Please touch base with your cat’s veterinarian to be sure this method will work for the type of medication you’re administering.

1. If you have a liquid form medication, you may be able to add it to their wet or dry food and mix well. This is only possible if you are certain that the cat will eat all of the food in the bowl in one sitting. Also, it’s important to be sure that no other pets in the house will also eat from the same bowl.

2. If you can’t be sure the food will all be eaten quickly and that no other animals will eat from the bowl, you will have to administer the liquid medication directly. I find that it’s easiest to use an eyedropper. Pick the cat up carefully and spend a few moments petting them and making them feel comfortable.  Slip the eye dropper into the side of their mouth (behind the teeth) and administer the medication quickly. If they are truly unhappy being held, you may need to corner them gently between your side and the side of couch and hold their head.  Watch the claws if you use this method.

3. If you have to administer medication that is in pill form, the easiest way to get them to take it is to mash the pill and mix it with their wet food.  Be sure to give them only the amount of food you’re sure they’ll eat in one sitting and keep all other animals away from the food dish.

4. If the pill needs to be administered all at once, cradle the cat in your left arm just like holding a baby. Place your forefinger and your thumb one either side of the cat’s mouth and gently apply pressure to the cheeks while holding the pill in your other hand. Once the cat opens their mouth, pop the pill in quickly and be certain that the cat swallows it.  Be very gentle and act quickly to avoid mishaps. You can rub their throat gently to encourage them to swallow. You’ll know the pill has gone down when they lick their lips.

Do you have any tips for administering medication that I haven’t included?

How to Get Your Cat to Take Their Medication

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8 thoughts on “How to Get Your Cat to Take Their Medication

  1. It sounds like you have covered the best way to give cats medication. Even though a little more work and cooperation is called for I like to give the medicine directly so I know it got into our cat’s system

  2. I have learned over many years that speed is your friend when pilling a cat. If you don’t get it done swiftly they will be on to you and then you are done. It needs to be a fast, stealth operation.

  3. I have Bartonella cat scratch fever and would never recommend putting your fingers in their mouth with a pill. The vet gave us a device that is one you put the pill in the rubber end and you push the plunger so it goes into the back of their throat when you put it in their mouth . It works great I have 4 cats and have to give pills everyday.

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