A Few Ways for Pilling a Cat

Pilling a catPilling a cat can be a task that involves your complete attention and a little preparation. Most will struggle to get away when something is shoved down their throat, and they will fight with all their strength to stop it.

If you have ever played rough with your cat,  you were probably amazed at the strength of these little guys, although most cats are very small in size.

But if she really needs her medication there are ways to get your cat to take their pills, which we will cover below.

The easiest way to give pills to cats is to crush the pill into a powdery form by putting it between two spoons.  Once the pill is crushed to powder, mix it in with some wet cat food. Cats that are used to eating dry, will see the wet food and think of it as a treat.  They will normally eat it right up, unaware that they just took their meds.

If the medication is in capsule form, all you have to do is open the cap and sprinkle on a little wet food and feed normally.

The Pill Gun Method

If your pet is to sick to eat, chances are she won’t eat it.  If this is the case, you should look into a cat pill dispenser.

You can get these handy devices from your veterinarian. They are made of plastic that hold the pill until you press a plunger mechanism which shoots the pill deep into the throat. When you get your pill dispenser for cats, your vet will give you a quick tutorial on how to use it.

Here is An excellent video explaining the Pill Gun Method from

Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine

These devices work great and probably the most difficult aspect of using the pill dispenser is getting your cat to open his mouth.  The gun will more or less shoot the pill into the cat’s mouth, and with a little messaging, down his throat.

You’ll need to hold her tight by wrapping her with a towel to make sure she doesn’t wiggle loose and scratch you.  Once you have the mouth open,  gently tip the cats head back,  squeeze the trigger and pull the gun away quickly.  After she takes her pill, make sure to reward her by giving a treat. Many times the reward makes the process go smoother the next time.

Pilling a Cat by Hand

If you have a cat that is easy to work with,  try giving pills by hand.  This is the most common method and to do it this way, you’ll need to wrap her with a towel or blanket and hold your cat still, tilt the head back and open her mouth with your hand.

Once you have the mouth open,  aim for the back of her throat and throw the pill in.  Once in her mouth, close the mouth with your hand and hold it shut for a few moments and gently massage the mouth and throat. The cat will swallow the pill if she hasn’t already.

If she is real putting up a battle and you can’t get any of the above techniques to work, you can always contact your vet and have the local pharmacy make flavored meds or gel using your cats medication. This form of treatment can get quite expensive. and should be used, as a last resort.