Cat versus pill: A fight to the finish?

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Being awakened by the sound of a kitty hurling -up a meal can be quite upsetting, and I can only imagine how uncomfortable and frustrating it must be for the cat.

Edgar Allen Poe has always been a major foodie. He rarely refuses a meal, but last night for some strange reason, even though he did his little dance and sang his “feed me” song, when we offered him his favorite food he wasn’t all that interested in eating it. He eventually ate half his meal and at about five AM, my husband Marty and I were awakened by the sound of Poe retching up his late night snack. Another episode followed several minutes later.

To help prevent Poe from further attacks, I jumped out of bed, ran to the kitty medicine cabinet and grabbed a Cerenia tablet and prepared to give him ¼ of a pill to help him feel better.  The pill in hand along with a minuscule amount of water loaded in a syringe (as a chaser), I picked up Poe and carried him to the bathroom sink and prepared to “pill” him.

But Poe had other ideas in mind. He glared at me and said, “I ain’t gonna take your stinking pill”. I looked back at him and gently whispering in his ear I said, “Sweetie, I promise this tiny pill will make you feel better.”

Poe flattened his ears and stomped his paw, giving me the evil eye and refused to open his mouth.  It was agonizing trying to get him to cooperate with me.  And make it even worse, he leaped onto the floor; scurrying out of the room.  So there I was all dressed up with no place to go as the sun was beginning to rise with the pill and syringe in my hand. I had only one burning mission; getting that darned pill into the cat.  Off I went to find him.  But every time he saw me, off he went like a speeding bullet.

But Poe must have gotten tired from the chase because I soon was able to pick him up from the sofa and take him into the guest bathroom. Since at least a half-hour had elapsed since my first attempt to pill him, Poe was much easier to handle.  Putting my hand on the top of his head, I gently pried his mouth open and quickly shoved that little pill as far down his throat as I could without his biting me. I quickly followed it the water chaser and saw him swallow.  To say that he wasn’t thrilled with this ordeal would be a huge understatement.

I think that Poe must have finally understood that I was only trying to help him. Later that morning it was obvious that his tummy felt better because he started purring and curled onto my chest and gave me an abundance of bristly, wet kisses.  I am positive that was his way of thanking me.

What do you do to pill your cat without it erupting into a major battle?  Please share your secrets with a comment.

11 thoughts on “Cat versus pill: A fight to the finish?

  1. I crush the pill between 2 pieces of wax paper with my meat cleaver side, then mix the pill with some Kittymalt or Felmalt or one of those, smear it onto my fingertip and poke it in the corner of his mouth.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I have a pill popper from Amazon that is like magic. It’s better than any I every used while working at the animal hospital. I pill Grace every day with this pill popper and it takes a millisecond…honest! This is the description: Ace Select Plastic Pet Pill Tablet Feeder Durable Injector Syringes Medical Feeding Tool with Soft Tip for Cats Dogs.

    I give her half a prednisolone pill placed into a #4 gelatin capsule. If she’s feeling a bit wonky, I will give her half a Cerenia as well, and both tablets fit into the capsule. She’s so used to it now that she comes and sits on the rug in front of the kitchen sink when I call her for her dinner. We pop that capsule and it’s done!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. vomit Patrol………….Martin, you must be also referring to my wonderful husband…………….”Mouseman has puked again……………never mind, I’ll clean it up………….’

    so – the pill thing…………….I can remember only one cat, in my entire lifetime of living with cats , who was impossible to pill. He was a Blue Point meezer I had bred – back in the late 60’s or so…….his timing was impeccable……….the instant he felt that pill approaching his tongue he would suddenly drop, all of his 10# creating a definite major shift in gravity! can’t tell you how many pills were ruined or lost or whatever…………enter the “pill popper” – used to use that forever after the relectant blue point………….and by now I have Roo, who replies to the “open wide” by opening wide.
    We have two currently who are on meds BID, my husband’s not the best piller in the world, so it’s up to me……..Roo, Open wide…………..

    then there’s Scherzo – 14 # of bicolor OSH and with a head that really stretches the reaches of my holdtheheadforpilling hand!! most of the time we compromise and I dont’ have to scruff him and fuss with prying open a locked and clenched mouth with my thumb……and scruffing definitely does NOT work with a piller…………so it’s currently scratch the chin then quick hand on the head, tilt back, poke pill in, and let go……..breakfaast or dinner takes care or making sure that pill gets down the tube!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. My Wheezy was a champ about taking her pills, but I shudder to think about giving Mouse or Bear a pill. What’s worked for me in the past (when they are uncooperative is FIRST containing them in a very small room like the bathroom, having the meds already prepared and a large towel at the ready. If they aren’t cooperative, I can grab them with the towel (trust me, Mouse has claws like razor blades, and trimming them (as I rarely do) entails actually semi sitting on him between my thighs with my feet crossed in back of me to prevent a rear escape and praying he doesn’t bite me….) Then if kitty doesn’t cooperate, I’ll burrito them in the towel, put them up on a comfortable surface for me (and unfamiliar to them) like the vanity top…grab the pill popper…and this is the important part…when you open their mouth, be sure their upper gums/lips are wrapped under their top teeth. Then if they bite down, they bite themselves first and you have a good shot at getting that pill down them. Follow up with treats, which of course will be immediately refused lol, but eventually they will come around. You might have to switch rooms, and if you’re lucky enough to have help, it’s fortunate (I have to do it alone) but this has always worked for me. 🙂 Hope someone finds that useful! Donna, Missy, Mouse and Bear.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. My Wheezy was a champ about taking her pills, but I shudder to think about giving Mouse or Bear a pill. What’s worked for me in the past (when they are uncooperative is FIRST containing them in a very small room like the bathroom, having the meds already prepared and a large towel at the ready. If they aren’t cooperative, I can grab them with the towel (trust me, Mouse has claws like razor blades, and trimming them (as I rarely do) entails actually semi sitting on him between my thighs with my feet crossed in back of me to prevent a rear escape and praying he doesn’t bite me….) Then if kitty doesn’t cooperate, I’ll burrito them in the towel, put them up on a comfortable surface for me (and unfamiliar to them) like the vanity top…grab the pill popper…and this is the important part…when you open their mouth, be sure their upper gums/lips are wrapped under their top teeth. Then if they bite down, they bite themselves first and you have a good shot at getting that pill down them. Follow up with treats, which of course will be immediately refused lol, but eventually they will come around. You might have to switch rooms, and if you’re lucky enough to have help, it’s fortunate (I have to do it alone) but this has always worked for me. 🙂 Hope someone finds that useful! Donna, Missy, Mouse and Bear.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Finish

    Dear Jo
    Rob and I have quite a method worked out that has been successful in all but our cat with terminal FIP who vomitted everything we gave him
    So we’ve had six cats
    And here’s our method
    Sit the cat on its bottom on your lap facing away from you
    Either you or one other pops the tablet in at the corner of the mouth where the teeth are at their lowest and they can’t bite you
    This will cause kittie to open their mouth
    So you stroke the tongue from back to front to encourage swallowing
    After that you can inject 2.5 ml water in the corner of kitties mouth to increase ease of swallowing and to avoid dry tabletting which can cause ulcers
    When you have two people you can hold kicky paws and feet out of the way of you are just one go to John Lewis and buy a swaddling sheet or a large hand towel and wrap your cat

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I have used pill pockets with success. I have also given small pills in a small chunk on a favorite canned food. But for those kitties that are “a pill” to pill, compounding pharmacies are a beautiful thing.
    So glad to see your articles again!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. It sure varies from cat to cat. Petey has been on 2x/day meds (multiple ones, so all compounded into one capsule am/pm to save both our sanities) for the past 10 months. She is pretty easy once I have her in hand (using your pry, pop, water method), but is a right bitch to lay hold of when she knows what time it is, and by week two she knew when meds time was coming up and would stay 3 steps ahead of me anywhere in the house. Solution has been to follow the pills with freeze-dried beef liver treats, which she is so crazy for that when I get the bag out she will come over to where I can lay hands on her and ‘take her medicine’ for the reward she gets immediately after. Daisy, new to pilling, is now also on 2x/day meds and so far is scarfing the pill up in shrimp flavored Pill Pockets with no clue that it is there. Jojo (Petey’s triaditis sister) wouldn’t touch a treat once it had pills in it, but was a total sucker for Beechnut turkey baby food. Refrigerated so that it is firm enough to hide the pill.

    Liked by 1 person

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