Pilling… an Olympic Sport!

October 2010 022

The normal demure Gg, 10-10

No, there are no photos from the event.   It’s all hands on deck getting pills into the little feisty patient, and I’m not sure who won this morning’s round.  I believe I got all of it in, but if there are time limits or only X attempts allowed, I’m sure I was disqualified and Gretchen won on a technicality.

No points were awarded for style or technique.  However, the boxing committee representative said his decision would have given the match to Gg.  She made contact far more often than I did.  (No, I am not now suffering from dog bites too.  She’s as sweet as she can be about clamping that strong JRT jaw shut while working the offending foreign object(s) out.)

Thanks to the power of social media, I do want to share (and save someplace I can find it quickly in the future) some of the suggestions my wise and experienced friends shared.

My youngest cousin (okay, note to self… she’s been an adult with two children of her own for a few years… she’s almost old enough to be in More Magazine’s target audience… you’re contemporaries and have been for a while now) suggested a pill popper, which was seconded by an old rescue squad friend.  Only problem is, a search for one online leads to a tool to aid in releasing pills from those foil packs and to something Amazon warned me was explicit.  Hem.  What they were suggesting is a tool that helps shoot said pill to the back of the throat and I’d love to try one with my competitor – er, my sweet baby girl.

Crushing and mixing with peanut butter is another popular option.  I don’t believe that will work for us, as Gg tends to spit new to her foods out, inspects them, and then and only then will either eat or leave it to Sissy, who has no such compulsions about what she puts in her mouth or swallows.  I realize PB is impossible to spit out, but I don’t want Gg to battle an icky pill after-taste for a long time!

One of the brilliant ideas I hadn’t thought of came from a League friend who is a faithful foster for a local rescue.  She also gave advice on how to get the wee one to eat kibble again.

 Dissolve in small amt of water and leave that as the only water bowl out next to her food when she eats .. Peanut butter should also work… Dissolve in small amt of water and add the water to her crunchy food etc. she will eat eventually.

And for anyone who has never “pilled” before, my childhood friend, a nurse and a great doggy dad, described the technique.  I’m sure the Pet Olympics Committee will be using this precise description of the ideal technique in the next rule book:

Hold the mouth open with one hand, put pill to back of throat with 2 fingers on the other hand, close mouth & hold while stroking the throat with the other. That makes them swallow. Then an immediate treat plus lots of cheers and accolades.

I also love that I knew before I joked that Gg and I would be right over to let one successful pilling friend help, she’d tell me to come on.  Never mind that she’s trying to get three kids ready for church on her own (her hubby is also a fire fighter/acting battalion chief), she’s just that awesome and will always help a friend… or anyone in need.

Another friend with a sister who is both a pharmacist and worked in a vet’s office at another point in her life has suggested compounding the offenders.  Liquids might be an option, but gosh, I don’t know that THAT would be easier than pilling.

Awesome doggy-blogger mom and friend Houndgirl introduced me to chasing and proved that Gg’s new fascination with cheesecake (when not used to disguise a pill) isn’t so unusual.

Unused cream cheese it was sweet and worked. We also used a chaser system – as soon as he had it in his mouth I was waiting with some Cheerios his other favorite thing and he would would swallow the pill for the Cheerios.

THAT, I’m filing away for the next time Sis needs pills.  Gg is too disciplined – her own personality, not anything we’ve trained into her – for distractions, I think.

Tomorrow, we meet our probably new vet to have the drain removed, and I’ll definitely as her about compounding and/or liquids.

I don’t know about Gg, but I need a nap.  Have you ever had a pet that made pilling an Olympic event?


5 Responses to “Pilling… an Olympic Sport!”

  1. Bubblesknits Says:

    Micro is the *same* way. Recently gave him his flea/tick/heartworm treatment and I didn’t think we were ever going to get him to swallow it. O.o Let me know what works for y’all.

  2. Kristi Says:

    I found that a pill shoved into a bit of hotdog worked better than peanut butter. I’m not sure it would work for Gg, but it might be worth consideration.

    Good luck!

  3. Nichole Says:

    We have had to do the pilling and chasing here lots… fortunately Zeus takes his with a pill pocket (which is nice for a large dog who has to take liver meds twice a day) and Lola has been gulping hers down with her breakfast/dinner (also nice for a girl on pred twice a day). Sophie is the one we typically have to pill…..

  4. The week in review « Don't Mess with my Tutu Says:

    […] Two Doggy Divas Journey Through Life « Pilling… an Olympic Sport! […]

  5. Mitch and Molly Says:

    We’re easy patients! Just swipe any pill through peanut butter or cream cheese and we will crunch it up for you.

    Love ya lots,
    Mitch and Molly

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