How to give a cat a pill?

Monie from San Jose asked us a very important question:

Hello CatPet club team!

My name is Monie and it seems that I fail at giving my cat a pill. Is giving your cat medicine is that hard indeed? How to give my cat a pill? Should I learn to give my cat a pill myself or I should always delegate this to the professional?

Thank you for making the cat world a better place!

Claudine Sievert, DVM answers:

Giving your cat a pill

The biggest challenge is a lack of confidence and a fear of doing something wrong. Inexperienced owners are doing this procedure too slowly. The cat starts understanding that something wrong is going on and it starts panicking. When giving a pill, your goal is to do everything as fast as possible so your cat even won’t have time to get scared.

How to give a cat a pill (step by step instruction)

Here’s how everyone can do it:

  • Step1: Prepare the pills and a chair in a well-lit place.
  • Step2: Gently take your cat and place it face up on your knees.
  • Step3: Now all you have to do is hold its head with your left hand and open its mouth with an index finger of the right hand.
  • Step4. When the mouth is opened, you should fixate it with a thumb of your left hand and put the pill as close to the tongue root as possible.

Steps 3 and 4 should take you 2-3 seconds. This is a stress-free method for both cat owners and their pets.

A word about pill guns for cats

Pill guns are widely promoted as a must-have device to give your pet a pill. But from my personal experience, pill guns will only complicate the procedure.

Should you learn to do this?

Giving the pills and injections is a skill that cannot be overestimated. This will save you time, money and eventually one day this may save your cat’s life.


Thank you for reading this! We wish your pets to be healthy and happy! Click here to ask your own question.

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