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Tips for Giving Pet Medications – Hiding Pills in Dog Food

December 24, 2009 By: admin Category: All Sick Dog Blog Posts, General Dog Health, Pet Medications

Giving a pet medication can be difficult! Learn how to give pills to a dog! (Adam Ciesielski Photo)

With five dogs and seven cats — all special needs animals — I give out many pet medications on a daily basis. Over the years, I’ve developed many great tricks for giving pills to a dog or cat. These tips for giving pet medications will definitely come in handy!

Hiding Pet Medication in Dog Food or Dog Treats – Don’t do it!

Never, ever give a dog medication by trying to hide the pill in dog food or dog treats that the pet eats on a regular basis. Dogs have a very acute sense of smell. In short, he’ll smell the pill from a mile away. The dog will be accustomed to the normal smell of his dog food or treat; he’ll detect the difference right away.

In addition, if you try to give a dog a pill in his dog food, you risk the dog forming an aversion. It’s a form of conditioning. If the dog has a bad experience while eating his dog food (i.e. biting into a pill – ever chewed a pill? It’s awful. And if you’re not expecting it, biting into a pill would be like encountering an olive pit in a jar of “pitted” olives – quite startling! )


In short, the dog will associate that negative experience with the dog food. And it only takes one negative experience for a dog to form an aversion. The end result? A dog refusing to eat dog food.

Related Articles on Pet Medication

Dog owners may also enjoy learning tips for giving a pill to a dog. To learn more, read The Sick Dog Blog’s article titled Pet Medication – How Do I Get My Dog to Eat a Pill?

Cat owners may also want to read How Do I Give a Pill to a Cat?

When trying to give a pill to a dog or cat, a pill shooter, also known as a pill gun, can be really helpful. To learn more about how to use a pill shooter and why they’re helpful for medicating a pet, read What is a Pill Shooter or Pill Gun?

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Pet Medication – How Do I Give a Pill to a Dog?

December 24, 2009 By: admin Category: All Sick Dog Blog Posts, General Dog Health, Pet Medications

Learn a trick for how to give pills to a dog! Make pet medication time easy! (Maria Kaloudi Photo)

Wondering how to get your dog to take a pill? Giving a dog medication can be a struggle that’s traumatic for both dog and owner. So many pet owners go through unnecessary hassle, trying to pry a dog’s jaws open (good luck with that) then, they’ll stick a hand inside the dog’s mouth in an attempt to toss the pill down the dog’s throat.

Many dog owners end up having to repeat the process when the dog spits out the pill. Then you’re left trying to repeat the process with an agitated dog and a disintegrating, sticky pill. Some even end up with an accidental dog bite, when their hand is in the wrong place at the wrong time, all while the dog is trying to snap his jaws closed in an attempt to avoid the pill.

So instead of wrangling your dog, try this simple trick to giving a dog pills.

Getting a Dog to Take a Pill – Cream Cheese and Peanut Butter

This method for getting a dog to take medicine in pill form is really easy. Place the pill in a dollop of peanut butter or cream cheese. Then, offer it to the dog – this is, hands down, the easiest way to give a pill to a dog.

This method also works if a dog won’t eat. If a dog is really sick, he won’t eat the peanut butter or cream cheese voluntarily. This is where the sticky nature of these foods comes in handy.

For a dog who won’t eat, smear the pet medication-laden cream cheese or peanut butter onto the roof of the dog’s mouth, right behind his front teeth. The dog will lick the peanut butter/cream cheese off the roof of his mouth, ingesting the pill in the process.

Giving Pets Medication in Cheese and Hot Dogs

If you don’t have cream cheese or peanut butter on-hand, you can try cheese or hot dogs. To give a pill to a dog using cheese, warm a bit of cheese in the microwave for 10 seconds – just enough to soften the cheese. Then, squash the cheese into a ball and insert the pill. Then, give the dog the cheese containing the pet medication.

You can also use hot dog bits. Cook a hot dog and cut a piece that’s a bit longer than the pill. Stick the pill into the center of the hot dog and serve.

Unfortunately, giving a dog a pill with cheese or hot dog bits only works if the dog is interested in eating. If a really sick dog won’t eat, there’s a good chance he won’t go for the cheese or hot dog bits. In that case, you’ll need to opt for peanut butter or cream cheese.

Related Articles on Pet Medication

Dog owners may also enjoy learning about why you should avoid giving dogs medication by hiding pills in dog food. To learn more, read The Sick Dog Blog’s article titled Tips for Giving Pet Medications – Hiding Pills in Food.

Another helpful tool can be a pet pill shooter or pill gun. To learn more about how a pill shooter works and why it’s helpful for giving medication to a dog or cat, read What is a Pill Shooter or Pill Gun?

Do you also own a cat? Cat owners may enjoy learning Methods for Giving a Pill to a Cat.

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