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How to Give Medications to Your Cat

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Liquid medicines, including electrolytes and water solutions, are administered into the cheek pouch between the molars and the cheek. A medicine bottle, eyedropper, or plastic syringe without the needle can be used to dispense the liquid.

Adult cats can be given up to 3 teaspoons (15 ml) of liquid medicine as a single dose. Measure the required amount into the bottle, syringe, or medicine dropper. (Use a plastic dropper in case the cat bites it.) Secure the cat as described for administering pills (above). Insert the end of the dispenser into the cheek pouch and, while tilting the chin upward, slowly dispense the medication. The cat will swallow automatically.


Injecting any foreign substance into the body always carries with it the danger of causing an acute allergic or anaphylactic reaction. Treating anaphylactic shock requires immediate intravenous adrenaline (epinephrine) and oxygen. This is one reason why it is best to have your veterinarian give injections. As a precaution, do not administer a drug by injection to a cat who has had any sort of past history of an allergic reaction to that drug.

If it becomes necessary to give injections at home (for example, if the cat is diabetic), have your veterinarian demonstrate the procedure. Some injections are given under the skin (subcutaneous) and others into the muscle (intramuscular). Directions that come with the product will indicate the correct route of injection.

WebMD Veterinary Reference from "Cat Owner's Home Veterinary Handbook"

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