Most kittens like taking medicine about as much as they like bath time, but however cute they are, sometimes you have to be the bad guy and force it down. Dispensing liquid medicine isn't always fun, but once you get the routine down, it's over in a snap.
Approach your kitten when he is calm, but lucid. You don't want to wake him up from a nap for this, but you don't want to interrupt playtime, either. He needs to be awake, but not rowdy.
Wrap him gently in a towel or blanket, leaving his neck and head exposed. The goal is to constrict his movement without mummifying him, so make sure he is relatively comfortable without being able to wriggle free.
Grab your kitten's head from above, with your thumb on one side of his face and your fingers on the other. Pull back gently and tilt his head backward, prompting his mouth to open.
Fill a needle-less syringe or eyedropper with kitty's medicine and stick the end of the dispenser into the kitten's mouth. Instead of shooting the medicine down his throat, wedge the dispenser between his teeth and cheeks.
Squeeze the medicine slowly from the dispenser into his cheek pocket, keeping your hand on his head and his head tilted back. Speak calmly and positively to him to help manage his anxiety over the situation.
Remove the dispenser, and after he finishes swallowing, let go of his head and remove the blanket constricting his legs. Pet him and speak encouragingly, and don't take it personally if he wants a little alone time.
Always check with your veterinarian before changing your pet’s diet, medication, or physical activity routines. This information is not a substitute for a vet’s opinion.
- Enlist a second person to help you. The process is significantly easier if someone else restrains the kitten's body while you administer the medicine.
Tom Ryan is a freelance writer, editor and English tutor. He graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a degree in English writing, and has also worked as an arts and entertainment reporter with "The Pitt News" and a public relations and advertising copywriter with the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh.