The vet gave us some pointers about how to give a pill to a cat. He suggested that we wrap him tightly in a towel and just force it down. Now, anyone who has given cats pills would know, that is not a viable option.
We did try wrapping Rock in a towel to get the pill in, but let's just say that was not an option. I then tried hiding it in some tinned chicken (both Rocky's and Petey's favourite). After carefully removing all remnants of the chicken from around the pill, he left the pill untouched in the centre of the plate.
I now have an elaborate system of grinding the pill to a fine powder, adding the juice form the tin of chicken, adding some of the chicken pieces to cover up the wet pill powder. I also have to make a plate up for Petey (no pill in his), only then will Rocky entertain the idea of 'taking' that pill. I then supervise them both to make sure all goes down, and the right cat gets the medicine.
But this whole process of giving Rocky this pill reminds me of a joke that has been circulating for a number of years. I first read it many years when Rock was just a Little Rock. I thought I would share. I have taken some literary license to edit the original a little, tailoring it more to Rocky's disposition. For example, the original suggested that you cradle the cat - our autistic Rocky will never ever tolerate being cradled. He is either needs to be held on to firmly, or he's not having anything to do with it.
How to give a cat a pill
- Pick cat up and hold it firmly. Take your forefinger and thumb and apply pressure where the jaw opens. Use your other hand to place pill at the back of his tongue. Shut cat's mouth firmly, and wait a few moments for cat to swallow.
- Retrieve pill from floor and cat from behind couch. Hold cat in left arm and repeat process.
- Retrieve cat from bedroom, and throw soggy pill away.
- Get a new pill, hold cat again with left arm, holding his paws tightly with left hand. Force jaws open and push pill to back of mouth with right forefinger. Hold mouth shut for a count of ten. This time gently massaging cat's throat from the top to bottom. This will force the swallowing reflex.
- Retrieve pill from fish tank and cat from top of wardrobe. Call spouse from yard for assistance.
- Get out another pill, kneel on floor with cat wedged firmly between knees, hold front and rear paws. Ignore low growls emitted by cat. Get spouse to hold head firmly with one hand while prying mouth open (being very careful to avoid the gnashing teeth). Drop pill into mouth and rub cat's throat vigorously.
- Check label and call Poison Control Centre to make sure pill not harmful to humans, drink glass of water to take taste away. Apply bandaid to spouse's forearm. Apply cold compress to cheek and check records for date of last tetanus shot. Throw shredded clothing away and get dressed again. Treat blood stains in rug with some carpet cleaner.
- Retrieve cat from curtain rod, and get another pill. Make note to buy new curtains and rod. Carefully sweep shattered figurines and vases from hearth and set to one side for gluing later.
- Wrap cat in large towel as you would swaddle a newborn, and get spouse to lie on cat with head just visible. Imbed the pill into a piece of steak, and shove the steak into the cat's mouth, and squirt in water with a turkey baster to help wash it down.
- Dry off and ask your spouse to drive you to the hospital for some stitches.
- Call vet to ask for replacement pills, and pay for them. Relax, you've only got another 4 days to go.
- Seriously consider getting a hamster the next time you are thinking about getting another cat.
How to give a dog a pill:
- Wrap it in bacon.
Contributed by Jamie Naessens