3 Good Ways To Stay Safe While Giving Your Cat Medication
Whether you're a novice or well-experienced in giving a cat medication, doing so can be an arduous task. Cats are equipped with sharp teeth and claws, and aren't typically thrilled to have their mouths pried open to administer medication. Maintaining control of the situation and preventing yourself from being injured is extremely important. If you're worried about being bitten or scratched, give these three suggestions a try to stay safe.
One easy option is to put an e-collar on your cat prior to administering the medication. E-collars are the cone-shaped collars that prevent cats from cleaning themselves when they have a wound. However, it can also help to prevent a cat from scratching you while you give them their medication.
There are two ways you can use an e-collar in this situation. One is to put it on normally, where the cone faces outward from the cat's face. Put your hand inside the cone to keep it safe from your cat's claws. The other is to put the cone on backwards, with it forming a shield over your cat's shoulders. This will prevent your kitty from raising their front paws, so they can't scratch you.
Another choice is to wear a good pair of gloves when giving your cat medication. Standard disposable latex gloves aren't an ideal choice, as they don't provide a lot of protection from claws or teeth. Instead, try gardening gloves or leather gloves to give yourself an extra layer between you and your cat. Make sure that your gloves are clean and free of any contaminants since your fingers will have to go into your cat's mouth. If you don't have a clean pair of gloves, buy a new pair. Used gardening gloves can potentially have traces of pesticides or plant material that's poisonous for cats, and leather gloves can get dirty or gather oil if you use them while driving a bike.
Lastly, another option you can use in combination with the steps above is to scruff your cat during the medicating process. This step should be used with caution, as scruffing your cat while injecting medication into their mouth or releasing a pill into their mouth could cause them to choke.
To properly scruff your cat to give them medication, grab the loose skin behind their neck and pull gently. They should become more relaxed if you've grabbed the correct area. Then, open their mouth gently and insert the syringe or pill you need to medicate them with. Now, in one quick motion, release their scruff and only then inject or release the medication or pill. This will allow them to have full control of their body to swallow the medication so it doesn't go down their windpipe instead of their esophagus.
Medicating a cat isn't easy, but if your veterinarian has prescribed pet meds, keep in mind that it's necessary in order to make your cat well. With these steps, the process should be a little easier for you and your cat.