How can medication be given to a challenging small dog?

Giving Medication to a Difficult Small Dog: Tips and Tricks That Worked for Us

This article is a follow-up to a previous question I asked on this platform not long ago. I want to share what I have learned and express my gratitude to everyone who helped us. Your input made a huge difference in our lives and most importantly, in the life of our beloved dog. Without proper medication, our dog’s health would be at risk. This article aims to provide helpful tips and tricks for giving medication to a difficult small dog, based on our own experiences.

1. Stay as Calm as Possible

One of the most crucial aspects of giving medication to a difficult small dog is to stay as calm as possible. Although it may take some time initially, remaining calm and quiet is highly beneficial. As you become more experienced, the process will become quicker and more efficient. Dogs can sense our anxiety, so by staying calm, we can create a more relaxed environment for both ourselves and our furry friends.

2. Powdered Peanut Butter – A Sneaky Helper

If your dog cannot have fat, powdered peanut butter can be a helpful tool. By mixing powdered peanut butter with the medication and placing it in your dog’s cheek, you provide a distraction. Your dog will be so focused on trying to eat the peanut butter mixture that they may not realize that you are also administering the medication with a syringe. This technique works especially well for pills, but can also be effective for liquid medication.

3. Utilize Assistance

Having two people to administer medication to a small, difficult dog can make the process easier, particularly in the beginning. One person can hold the dog securely, with their head tucked into their neck, while the other person administers the medication. This prevents the dog from pulling away and makes the process more manageable. As you become more skilled, you may be able to handle the task alone. In that case, gently wrapping the dog in a blanket can help limit their movement.

4. Follow Up with a Treat

After administering each dose of medication, it is important to follow up with a treat for your dog. This positive reinforcement helps create a positive association with the medication process, making it more likely that your dog will cooperate. By rewarding them with a treat, you show your appreciation for their cooperation.

5. Be Cautious with Mixing Medication in Food

If you have a tiny dog, be cautious when attempting to mix medication in their food. While this approach may work for some dogs, it can backfire for others. If your dog realizes that their food has been altered, they may refuse to eat it altogether. It is essential to find the method that works best for your specific dog, taking into consideration their size and preferences.

6. Consider Appetite Stimulants

If your dog lacks an appetite and is not food-motivated, consult your vet about the possibility of using appetite stimulants. These medications can help stimulate your dog’s hunger, ensuring that they consume the necessary food alongside their medication. Maintaining a healthy weight is crucial for their overall well-being and medication effectiveness.

7. Stay Calm and Allow Time

When starting the medication routine, it is normal to feel panicked and overwhelmed, especially if your dog is difficult to handle. However, it is essential to take a deep breath, remind yourself that your dog’s health is at stake, and allow yourself time to adjust to this new challenge. Find moments to relax and let your dog relax too. Regularly remind yourself that the less tense you are, the better your dog will respond to the medication process. For restraining your dog, a soft blanket can provide comfort and security.

8. Shave Hair Around the Mouth

If your dog has long hair, consider shaving it tight around their mouth. This will provide you with a clear view of their mouth and make it easier to administer the medication. It may seem like a small step, but it can significantly improve the efficiency of the process.

While our dog still doesn’t enjoy taking medication, the techniques and strategies outlined in this article have greatly improved our experience. It is important to remember that every dog is unique, and what works for one may not work for another. Adapt these tips to suit your dog’s needs and personality. The support and advice we received from the amazing individuals on this platform played a crucial role in our success. If you find yourself in a similar situation, I hope this article can provide encouragement and assistance. Remember, you are not alone, and with patience and perseverance, you can successfully administer medication to your difficult small dog.

Take care and cherish your beloved companions!

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