Some dogs are easy to medicate. Wrap a pill in a bit of cheese or stick it in a Pill Pocket and—GULP!—down the hatch it goes.
But what do you do when your dog hates taking pills or you have a particularly bitter-flavored medicine that renders your usual technique useless?
Here’s a fun trick that you can play on your dog.
- 5 bite-sized pieces of super yummy food (cheese, leftover steak, meatball, etc)
- 1 pill
- 1 unsuspecting dog
- Hide the pill in one of the 5 pieces of yummy food.
- Call your dog over.
- Toss him one of the pieces that has no pill.
- Continue tossing pieces of yummy food one after another until you have no more.
- Pat yourself on the back for being so clever!
- “My dog can’t catch treats. They just bounce off his face.”
- Solution: Call your dog into the kitchen. Ask for a Sit or Down and a Wait/Stay. Make a line of 5 treats with a few inches between each one. Release your dog to Hoover up the treats.
- “My dog chews and then spits out the pill!”
- Solution: Smaller pieces. Ideally something your dog will swallow whole. If the pill is large, you can cut it into smaller pieces (assuming it’s not extended release—ask your vet!). Use 8-10 treats and hide the pill pieces in 2-4 of them.
- “My dog now spits out treat #3!”
- Solution: Make it treat #5. Or treat #2. Mix it up every day so your dog doesn’t expect it
- “My dog is really smart and has wised up to this game, too!”
- Solution: Up the ante to something he can’t refuse. Liverwurst. Canned tiny fish (in water). Canned cat food.