Dog Friendly Tips: Administering a pill
With your right hand pick up the pill or capsule between the thumb and first or second finger and with the little finger pull down the lower jaw. Hold it open with the side of the little finger and drop the pill as far back on the tongue as possible.
With your forefinger, or with the forefinger and second finger, push the pill gently but quickly as far back into the throat as you can. Then withdraw your hand quickly, let the mouth close and hold it together until the dog sticks out its tongue in the act of swallowing.
Several pills and capsules may be poked down in this way one at one time.
Some capsules contain bitter or irritating drugs. If a dog bites them they may cause fright, suffocation, and a taste so obnoxious that the dog will try for many minutes to cough or scratch it out. If you are giving your pet medicine of this sort, make sure no capsules are dropped between the teeth or insufficiently pushed down the throat that the dog tries to chew it.
Short-nosed breeds, such as Boston Terriers, Boxers, English Bull-dogs, and Bullmastiffs, have such fat tongues and restricted throats that laymen frequently have difficulty in properly medicating them. When wet, the pills or capsules become slippery and slide around sideways over the back of the broad tongue. It is wise never to try to give wetpills, especially wet capsules.
If you are unsuccessful in the first attempt to give the medicine, take the capsule out and dry it. It will often stick to your finger just enough to enable you to pilot it into the back of the throat properly. Sometimes two fingers can keep it from sliding side-ways, and on large dogs even three fingers may work well.
There are other effective methods you may prefer in the administration of pills, tablets, and capsules. You may have noticed how when offered a tidbit of food dogs smell it, pick it up gingerly, chew, and swallow it. If it is to their liking, most gulp down the second and subsequent morsels.
With this in mind, prepare three units of food. Place the capsule or tablet under the chosen goodie on the second unit of food. Give the dog morsel number one, which will be checked out thoroughly, then give the second identical looking morsel with the medication and immediately show the third tidbit. The dog will often gulp the second the more quickly to get to the third.
One owner solved the problem by sewing chicken skin around each capsule and placing them in the refrigerator to give to her dog at the appropriate timed intervals during the day.
Another method of administering solid medications is in marshmallows. Leave a few exposed to the air for a few hours until they become tough on the outside, then insert the medication in one of three. Once again, give one without the medication first. Meatballs and soft cheese can be used in the same way.
Liquid medicine presents a greater challenge. It may work to combine it with honey or corn or maple syrup and pour the mixture on a piece of bread or just mix it into their feed.