None of us like taking our pills. To make the process easier, the Lincoln, Nebraska, All Feline Hospital suggests wrapping your cat’s meds inside a piece of cheese or lunchmeat, or in a commercial “pill pocket.” It might work if she’s not a big chewer and really loves the treat.
Otherwise, you can grind up the pill and mix it in with whatever food your cat likes most – the trick is that the cat has to eat it all, or she won’t get all the medicine.
If your cat sees through these deceptions and refuses to take her medicine, you’ll have to place the pill into her mouth and somehow convince her to swallow it – see detailed instructions for a variety of methods.
Keep in mind that if you administer the pill by hand, it might get stuck in the esophagus for a while before making its way to the stomach, which you can usually avoid by squeezing a syringe of water or broth into your cat’s mouth after the pill.
Your cat may also get fleas. Homemade flea repellents are easy to whip up and lower your pet’s – and your family’s – exposure to synthetic insecticides.
Lots of cats will turn their noses up at food that’s been sitting out all day while you’re at work.
Small, frequent meals throughout the day actually matches their natural feeding behavior more closely, so if you’re able to fill their dishes just a little several times rather than free-feeding a full bowl, Vitale recommends it: “This also gives the cat an event during the day to look forward to, which may help alleviate behavioural issues.”
If you won’t be home to dispense multiple meals, Vitale again recommends food puzzles.
“This would allow the cat to get the food out at their own pace, give them enrichment to focus on while alone, and help food from sitting out too long,” she says.
Before you rush out and buy a whole lot of pet stuff, take a look at the insider secrets you should know before buying a pet.
Dogs can be as scary (or scarier) than kids, and Vitale suggests introducing your cat to both in more-or-less the same manner: “Always allow cats to sniff, then see the dog or child before physical interactions occur.”
Make sure, too, that your cat has a safe, accessible place to hide if he’s just not interested in participating.
Just like humans, animals have their own unique personalities. When you pair two different species together it can be harmonious – or the clash of the titans. Check out the pet combinations that are most likely to hate each other.
This article first appeared on RD.com.