It can be a daily struggle to give your cat her medication, but it is important that you take care of her health. If you have problems giving your cat her medication, there are a few tricks that can make things easier. For example, let your vet show you how best to do it, use special treats to give her her pills, or fix her with a towel. In this article we will explain how best to give your cat her medication
Choose The Best Method To Give Your Cat Medicine
1.Talk to your vet. Before you give medication to your cat, you need to talk to your vet. Your vet will examine your cat and determine the best treatment for her condition. If she needs medication, your vet will prescribe it and explain how to administer it. Ask if you are unclear about any explanations.
- Ask your vet to show you. If you have to give your cat pills without food, a demonstration by the vet can be helpful. Before you leave the surgery, ask him to demonstrate the administration of the medication to you. This way you can observe the whole process and ask your questions.
- If your cat is sick, you are not allowed to make a diagnosis yourself. Go to the vet as soon as possible.
- Never give your cat medication that has been prescribed to a human, another cat or another animal.
2.Read the instructions on the packaging carefully. Before you give your cat her medication, read the instructions on the package and make sure you understand them. If you have any questions or are worried, call your vet. These are questions you could ask your vet:
- What time/time of day should the medication be administered?
- Should the medication be given with or without food?
- How should the medicine be administered? Orally? By injection?
- What side effects may occur?
- How do I ensure my own safety while taking this medicine? Should I wear gloves?
3.Decide how you want to administer the medication to your cat. Before you give the medicine to your cat, you should be clear about how to do it best. If you can give the medicine to your cat with food, this is the easiest and most enjoyable way for both of you.
- With food If your cat can take the medication orally with food, it is best to use Pill Pockets or a food that your cat likes. You may have to try several different foods before you find something your cat really likes.
- Without food If your cat needs to take her medication on an empty stomach, use a pill syringe or carefully place the pill in her mouth while holding her. If you need to give liquid medication, use a pipette to put the medication into your cat’s mouth while holding her.
Mix The Medicine With Food
If your cat has been prescribed tablets or liquid medicine, your vet should be able to tell you whether it’s OK to administer the drug by mixing it into her food. If you’re unsure, play it safe by checking the instructions or giving your vet a call. Once you have the go-ahead, you can then follow these steps:
1. If the medicine is in tablet form, it may be possible to grind it into fine granules by using a pestle and mortar or the back of a spoon. However some tablets must not be crushed as it affects their effectiveness – so check with your vet first. If this is possible, do this carefully on a non-slip surface, and try not to spill or waste any granules, so that your cat gets her full dosage. If your cat is on long-term medication that needs to be crushed, you could consider buying a pill crusher.
2. Make sure that your cat is hungry by leaving six to 12 hours between her meals, if it is medically safe to do so – it may be hard to ignore her pleas for food, but it can help curb any potential fussiness and ensure that she takes in all the necessary medicine.
3. Mix the ground-up tablet or liquid medicine with a small amount of your cat’s favourite wet food or a strong-flavoured treat, making sure to stir it well and place it in a familiar feeding bowl. By mixing the medicine with only a small amount of food, you’ll ensure that your cat will eat the entire portion and gets her full dose.
4. Wait five minutes before giving the mixture to your pet to ensure that the flavour has fully soaked into the medicine. This will help to reduce the chance of your cat refusing her food because of the smell of the medicine.
5. Although you may want to watch your cat eat her food to check that she takes it all in, this could have the opposite effect and might put her off. Instead, let her eat in peace, making sure that she’s the only one with access to her food.
Once she’s done, check to see that she’s cleared the bowl (if the tablet wasn’t ground up, you may find that she’s simply separated the pill from the food). Once the bowl is clean, remember to remove it so that other pets don’t lick up any medicine they’re not supposed to.
6. Keep your cat indoors for the next half an hour, in case she vomits. If she does bring up her food, make sure to consult your vet straight away, as they’ll be able to advise you on the next steps to take.
7. If your cat refuses to eat the medicine mixed with food, try wrapping the pill in a treat such as a small amount of soft cheese or a bit of cooked fish or chicken breast. If that still doesn’t work, you may need to try the method below.
Administer Medication Without Food
Before you hold your cat, the medicine must be prepared. If you have not already done so, read the description before you prepare the medicine. Call the vet if you have any questions about administration.
- Your vet may be able to give you a tablet dispenser if you need to administer the tablet without food. A tablet dispenser is like a syringe for pills, so you don’t have to stick your fingers in your cat’s mouth. If your cat needs to take liquid medication, you will need to use a pipette.
- Check the dose for your cat again and make sure you have prepared the right amount.
- If your cat needs to take her medicine without food, prepare an additional pipette with about 5 ml of water. You can give the water to your cat after you have administered the tablet, so that your cat swallows the tablet and it doesn’t get stuck in her oesophagus.
- Place your cat’s medication so that you can reach for it while holding the cat with its mouth open. You can place the medicine on kitchen paper nearby or ask someone to hold it for you.
Wrap your cat in a towel so that only his head is sticking out. Wrap her like a burrito by placing her in the middle of the towel and quickly wrap the sides around her. If you have to give your cat a tablet without food, you have to fix her and put the tablet in her mouth. If your cat is not used to taking pills, she will fight to get free. If you wrap her in a towel and only her head is sticking out, she will not find any hold on your body and cannot get away. The towel also prevents her from scratching you.
- If it is easier for you, you can also hold your cat on your lap while you administer the medication. You should still wrap the cat in a towel as there is a good chance that he will try to run away.
- If this is a new experience for your cat, you should get help from a friend or family member. This way, one person can hold the cat and the other can administer the medicine with both hands.
Use a raised surface such as a high countertop, a chest of drawers or washing machine. Any surface that is at least waist-high will make it easier for you to administer the medicine. Hold your cat (still in a towel) while her body rests on the surface. If you are administering the medicine alone, you should press one hip against the surface and put one arm around your cat.
Open the mouth of the cat. Press with your thumb and ring finger against the corners of her mouth. When you apply pressure, your cat’s mouth should open. If your cat’s mouth does not open wide enough to administer the medication, use your other hand to gently push down your cat’s lower jaw.
Be careful not to get your fingers in your cat’s mouth while keeping it open. They should be on the edge of the mouth, out of reach of the teeth.
Place the medicine in the cat’s mouth. If you are using a tablet dispenser, place the tablet on the back end of the tongue. If you are using a pipette, place it between the cheek and the teeth of the cat. Do not inject liquid medication into your cat’s throat or tongue. It would probably flow into her windpipe, causing your cat to choke.
If you give the medication to your cat without food, now use the syringe with the 5 ml of water. Be sure to squirt the water between the cat’s cheek and teeth.
Close your cat’s mouth and stroke her neck. When you have administered the medicine, close your cat’s mouth and gently stroke her neck under her chin. This will encourage her to swallow the tablet.
Reward your cat. Even if you can’t give your cat a treat to reward her for taking the tablets, you should do something that shows your joy. Pet her, play with her and praise her immediately after you give her the medicine.
Don’t give your cat medication for humans, such as Ibuprofen or Paracetamol. This can be harmful or deadly!