Cat Won't Swallow Pills? Try Compounded Medication

Posted on: 23 September 2020

Your cat needs to take their medication to stay healthy and to avoid feeling lousy. But distracting your cat while you're giving them the pill stopped working last week and hiding it their food is having mixed results at best.

You could get a pill crusher and try to mix it into their food that way, but there is a more professional answer to this problem. A pharmacist who makes compounded pet medication can swap out those pills for a form your cat is more likely to accept.

Compounded medication is the same medicine your vet has prescribed but mixed or altered in a way that is tailored to your individual cat. For example, those unpalatable pills can be turned into a liquid oral suspension, similar to suspension medications given to children. The suspension can then be given to your feline friend with an oral syringe or mixed into a small serving of food. It can also be enhanced with a flavor that appeals to your particular cat, such as tuna, chicken, liver, or even bubble gum.

Oral powders are another form to try if the medication itself does not have a strong taste. You can sprinkle the powder on your cat's food, so the necessity of swallowing an easily detected foreign object is removed. If your cat likes peanut butter as a treat, you can just mix the powder into the peanut butter.

Another option is a medicated chew treat. Treats can be made to the dosage specified by your veterinarian, and taste like chicken, fish, bacon, or cheese. Your cat will just feel loved instead of medicated.

But in the event that you've got the pickiest cat in all the world, compounded pet medicine can also be administered using non-oral methods. Transdermal gels are a somewhat pricier, but popular alternative for cat patients who flat out refuse oral medicine of any kind. These come in dosed applicators that you apply to the inside of your cat's ears, and the medication is then absorbed through the skin, directly into the bloodstream. Another advantage of this method is that it won't upset your cat's stomach.

Complying with medication instructions has always been a problem for cat parents. According to registered veterinary technician Saleema Lookman, compliance depends on finding a form of the medication that your individual pet will take without a struggle. Pharmacies that offer compounded medications for your cat can help.