No one likes to pill a cat. Not you. And certainly not your cat.
The bad news? It’s very probable you will need to give your cat a pill at some point in their lifetime. Usually this is because of a health issue – so it’s already a stressful time. For you and your kitty.
The good news? Many cats can be pilled by stuffing the pill into a treat. Some cats will gobble it down in some tasty food. Others are easy to pill with a pill popper.
However, that has certainly not been my experience.
When our Pooh Bear needed to be given a pill regularly, I quickly realized how hard it can be to pill a cat. Especially a clever cat.
The pill popper seemed easy at first… until I realized our Pooh Bear just hid the pill on the back of his tongue till I was done. Then spit the soggy pill on the floor. Try catching a cat to re-pill them after failing the first time. Good luck.
I then tried stuffing the pill in a treat – and it worked! For a few days. Then he started to carefully chew the treat… till he found the evil pill. The resentment in his eyes as he let the entire treat and pill fall out of his mouth was palpable.
So, here’s how to pill a cat like Pooh Bear:
- Calmly approach your cat. Kneel down over him, with one hand on his chest and your feet positioned so that he can’t scooch out backwards.
- Gently open his mouth, place the pill on the back of his tongue, close his mouth and let him swallow. For clever kitties (like Pooh Bear), I follow up with a small syringe of water to make sure he swallows.
- Follow this up with happy praise and a treat!
It’s worth emphasizing how important calmness is. Our cats pick up on our stress – and since this is usually an unpleasant experience for all involved, try to have a positive, calm mindset when doing this. It helps to prepare everything ahead of time. Pooh Bear knew the sound of the pill bottle, so I would grab the pill when he was out of earshot, prepare the syringe of water – and then make sure I was calm before approaching him. While he still didn’t love getting his pill, my calmness let him know I was doing something to help him.😻
Natural Calming Formula For Cats