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Many cat owners know the struggle of trying to persuade their cat to take a tablet. It can be stressful for both owners and cats, so we’ve put together our different ways of how to give your cat a tablet.

Different ways to get your cat to take a tablet

If giving your cat their tablet by hand fills you with dread, you can try the following:

  • put it in a treat. Try putting your cat’s tablet in their favourite treat, some pill putty or a bit of plain cooked chicken. Remember to make sure they don’t spit it out and that your vet says it’s OK to give them their tablet with food
  • crush it in their food. If your vet says the tablet can be crushed up and given with food, try crushing it up and mixing it with one of their daily meals (ideally breakfast depending on the time you need to give them their tablet). Make sure they eat all their meal, though, otherwise they may miss some of their medication. Or you could try mixing it, unless your cat is sensitive to the ingredients, in a soft yoghurt-textured treat for cats
  • hide it in something strong smelling. Cats are very sensitive to smells (which is why they can usually find their tablet in their food). Try using a little of something strong smelling, like tuna, to hide the tablet in
  • call your vet. If all else fails, give your vet a call for advice. They might be able offer other suggestions or there might be a different way to give your cat their medication (for example, if it is available as a liquid)

How to give your cat a tablet by hand

Take a look at our handy video on how to give your cat a tablet by hand:

If you’re giving your cat a tablet by hand, follow our steps:

  • try to keep your cat as relaxed as possible and use their blanket under them
  • get someone to help if you can – whoever is holding your cat should have the cat facing away from them on their lap or a table (don’t pick your cat up to give them a tablet)
  • make sure their bum is either against your body or a wall to stop them backing away
  • if you have someone helping, they should gently hold the cat’s chest and upper front legs
  • hold your cat’s cheekbones towards the back of their head, keeping clear of their teeth and whiskers. Gently tilt their head back
  • gently open their mouth using a finger on their incisor (front) teeth – avoid those sharp canines
  • pop the tablet in their mouth (towards the back of the tongue) and close their mouth. Stroke their throat downwards to encourage them to swallow – lip licking is usually a sign of success
  • release your cat and make sure they don’t spit the tablet out. If they stick around, make sure to give them a reward (like a treat of playing their favourite game)
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