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dog worming tablet

The easiest way to give your dog a worming tablet

There are a few different methods which may be used to make your dog take their worming tablet. You may need to try a few on your pet to see which method works best for you. Remember to always wash your hands after handling any medication.

1. Simply offering flavoured tablets as a treat

Pharmaceutical companies spend a lot of time, money and research trying to make their tablets as tasty as possible, if you are lucky your dog might enjoy their tablet as a treat. It is certainly worth a try. Offering the tablet when they are hungry, just before their regular meal time may improve your chances of success.

2. Hiding the tablet in food

This is certainly the most popular method used by dog owners. This may involve hiding the tablet in their regular meal or in a favourite treat. Only use foods you know your dog likes and does not upset their stomach. Here are our tips to successful tablet hiding:

a. In a treat

Use a strong-tasting food, when possible, to mask the smell of the tablet. A piece of sausage or cheese are handy options as the tablet can be hidden inside them. Give a regular treat followed by a piece containing the tablet, then finish with another regular treat as a reward. There are commercially available ‘pill pocket’ treats designed to wrap around a tablet.

b. In their dinner

Some dogs have a surprisingly skilful ability to eat everything in their dish apart from the tablet you had hidden. To maximise your chance of success with this technique wait until you pet is hungry and looking for their food. Then hide the tablet in a small portion of their regular meal. This small portion is likely to be eaten quickly and less carefully than if you put the full meal into the meal at once. Once the small portion and tablet have been eaten, then the remaining food can be given.

3. Direct Tabletting

Some dogs are just too clever to fall for any of the above methods. For these pets the best solution is often to give the tablet directly into their mouth. If you have any concerns that your pet could become aggressive or bite, then this solution is not for you.

When done correctly direct tabletting is reliable and quick and your dog will barely know what happened.

How to give your dog a worming tablet

  • Choose a time your pet is calm and relaxed, try to remain calm and relaxed yourself.
  • Get them to sit, ideally with their bum facing into a corner to stop them backing away from you.
  • Hold your dog’s upper jaw in one hand, with the other gently lower the bottom jaw and using this same hand place the tablet as far back on their tongue as you can.
  • Then close their mouth and rub under their chin, or gently blow on their nose to encourage swallowing.
  • Not placing the tablet far back enough will allow them to manoeuvre their tongue to spit it out.
  • Most times if you see a tongue sticking out then you know they have swallowed the tablet.
  • Have a tasty treat ready to reward them once the tablet is gone.

Written by Lindsay Rose MA VetMB CertAVP CertVBM MRCVS

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