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Giving your pet medication by mouth
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Giving tablet medications in food
Usually, the easiest way of giving tablets to your pet is to disguise them in food. Most tablets can be broken or crushed to help disguise them. Some medications must be given on an empty stomach or must be given whole to work properly; your Vet will advise you if this is the case.

If the pet will not take the medication in their normal diet, then a small amount of cream cheese, pate, chicken, tuna or prawns could be tried (provided your pet does not have an intolerance) or there are commercially available “pill pocket” style treats designed to hide the taste and smell of most medications.
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Giving tablet medication straight into the mouth
If your pet will not take the medication in food (or the medication is not compatible with food) then you may have to administer the medication directly into the pet’s mouth.

Gently tip your pet’s head backwards so that they are looking at the ceiling. Then pull the lower jaw down before placing the tablet at the back of the mouth (over the back of the tongue). Close the mouth gently stroke the throat to encourage swallowing.
Giving tablet medication straight into the mouth
If your pet will not take the medication in food (or the medication is not compatible with food) then you may have to administer the medication directly into the pet’s mouth.

Gently tip your pet’s head backwards so that they are looking at the ceiling. Then pull the lower jaw down before placing the tablet at the back of the mouth (over the back of the tongue). Close the mouth gently stroke the throat to encourage swallowing.
Image 1: Tablets must be pushed over the back of the tongue with the mouth held open.  Pulling the head backwards helps to encourage opening of the mouth.
Other options for giving tablet medications

“Pill poppers” are available to administer tablets to more reluctant pets (ask a member of practice staff to show you how to use this safely).

Some tablets can be crushed, dissolved in water and syringed into your pet’s mouth (please check with your vet before doing this).

If you are concerned that these options will not suit you or your pet please discuss this with your Vet as there may be other options available.

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Image 2: A pill popper can be useful in safely getting tablets over the back of the tongue.  Willows are able to supply these.
Giving liquid medications in food
In the same way as with tablet medications, the easiest way to give liquid medication is generally to disguise them in food. If the medication cannot be given with food or your pet does not like the taste then the medication can be given directly into your pet’s mouth.
Giving liquid medications straight into the mouth
The best way to do this is to gently close your pet’s mouth and insert the syringe or pipette into the corner of your pet’s mouth between the lips the teeth.

Squirt the medication gently across the tongue rather than to the back of the throat to prevent the pet from accidentally inhaling. Gently, keep the mouth closed and encourage swallowing by stroking the throat.
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Image 3: Liquid medications can be slowly syringed into the mouth through a gap between the teeth.