What are some tips on how to give nose drops to a cat?
Original Question: Any suggestions on how best to give nose drops to a cat that isn’t cooperating? - Anonymous
Thanks for your question.
I appreciate your frustration. This is a challenging issue to help you in writing but I can give you some thoughts and tips to consider that may get you a little closer to success. I worry that you may read these tips and think that they are easier said than done.
Regardless, here are some strategies on how to give nose drops to a cat:
- Consider dropping by your veterinary hospital and request if a registered veterinary technician can show you how to do this. RVTs are a great resource for this kind of need and this shouldn’t cost you anything.
- When performing this at home, keep in mind that cats do not like to be approached from the front. Their first instinct will be to back away. The ideal approach would be to get your cat into a crouch position on the floor in front of you with you kneeling them. You can apply gentle pressure to their back to push them into the floor to prevent them from running away. In this position, you are now both facing the same way, with you behind them.
- You then take your domino hand and hold their head firmly by placing all 4 fingers under their chin and your thumb on top of their head. The best way I can describe this is to think of your hand in the same position that you would hold a TV remote and you are directing the head towards that TV.
- Then you tilt the head completely vertical so that their nose is pointed straight up. This will fully extend the neck and when the neck is stretched to this position, the muscles are at their weakest and the ability to break free from your hand is reduced.
- With your none dominant hand, you hold the dropper above the nose and administer the dose.
- You have to be firm but not brutal. Remember that if he/she struggles and you give up, they now know that they can win by struggling and it can embolden them to fight vigorously the next time. So you have to harden your heart, be bold and firm, keeping in mind that you aren’t torturing them but in fact you are helping them.
- I’m going to assume this may not be an option, but you could ask your veterinarian if the nose drops for cats medication comes in a different form that can be administered a different way that may result in better success.
- If you truly can’t achieve success, you could find someone in your neighborhood who may be good with animals, often neighborhood pet sitters will be veterinary assistants who could drop by your house to administer the dose or help you until you can do it on your own.
I wish you the best of luck. I hope this was helpful.
Dr. Clayton Greenway
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