How to Give Your Pets Medication

No matter what, don't show any signs of stress because your dog will immediately notice. Instead, look at these helpful strategies to get your pet to swallow a pill. If you have to give him eye drops you'll probably need another person to hold him down.

Last update: 03 September, 2018

When your dog or cat is sick, your vet will give him prescription, such as pills or eye drops. Either way, it’s never easy to give pets medications. In today’s article you can learn how to give your pet medication.

Tips on giving your pets medication

Has your dog or cat ever needed to take a medicine, but you couldn’t get them to swallow it? It’s hard to “trick” him into taking big pills or bitter drops, luckily there are some techniques that make it easier. Follow these steps:

1. Calm down

This is really important. Animals can read your body language and pick up on your emotions. They’ll immediately notice if you’re nervous or anxious.

When you need to give them medication, the first thing you should do is to calm yourself down. Be gentle if you have to open your pet’s mouth, put a pill inside and lift up his snout to have him swallow it.

Putting eye drops in a dog's eyes

If you shout, force their jaws open, or show anger in your body language, your pet will feel like he’s in danger and won’t respond the way you want him to. It’ll keep his mouth closed, hide, growl, etc…

2. Hide the medication in the food

You can usually break pills up into halves or quarters, which is perfect for making the pill much easier to hide in your pet’s food.

You can make a little ball of cheese and put the medication inside it, wrap it in bacon or put it in a piece of meatWhat ever you use to disguise the pill, make sure it’s small enough so your pet swallows without chewing that much.

Giving your pet medication

3. Make it a game

Another way to give your pet medication is to make it fun, like it’s a game. S pend a few minutes with your pet before you give him the medication.

If you like the idea of hiding the pill inside food, you can give them some pieces without any pills by tossing some pieces and having your pet catch them in mid-air. He’ll be having so much fun that he won’t realize there’s medicine hidden inside one of them.

However, it’s not a good idea to play this game only when you intend to give your pet medication. It won’t be so obvious to your dog or cat if you do it on different occasions.

4. Take advantage of your dog’s personality

If your dog is greedy or gets excited around food, you can use that to your advantage. A great way is two have two balls of food — one empty and the other with the pill inside.

Have your pet sit down and show him both balls. Give him the first one (with the pill) and show it there’s another one to come afterwards. He will immediately gobble the first one down just to have the next one!

5. Find flavorful medications

Due to the difficulty of giving your pet medications, laboratories have started making flavorful pills.

Check with your vet to see if they’re available in the kind of medication your pet needs. It’s much easier to mix it with food or feed it to them directly this way.

6. Ask for help

There are some medications that you have to use with a needleless syringe. You can put it into the side of your pet’s mouth, make sure his mouth closed, and inject the liquid. It’s easier with powders because you can mix them in your pet’s food or water.

dog with needleless syringe in his mouth

There are times when you’ll need help from a friend or vet to get the drops into your pet’s ears or eyes, or rub creams on them.

The idea is to have someone else keep them still while you apply the medication. Remember that your pet needs to feel calm to prevent any problems from happening.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.