Be it vitamins, herbs or medication, the time will come to give your dog a pill. Believe me, it can be tricky. Some of you have tried wrapping a piece of meat around the pill or stuffing it into a bite of hot dog before feeding it to your dog. What you may have found is that your clever dog hijacks the treat and spits out the pill.  What you need is a tasty all-or-nothing option. For me and my dogs, I use organic peanut butter.  

Here’s how it works:

Prime your dog by putting a little peanut butter on your finger and then let them lick it off. Once they get the taste of this awesome new discovery they’ll be looking for more. At this point, dip the pill in the peanut butter and offer it up. You’ll notice they take the pill very willingly. As a final step, follow up the pill with another small finger of peanut butter before they figure out it was a trick.

To be fair, do this exercise using small amounts of peanut butter. While the viewing pleasure may be huge for you, we want to make this a positive experience for the dog. Most vets seem to be fine with giving a dog reasonable amounts of peanut butter, but check with your vet just to be safe. Other alternatives would be wet dog food or liverwurst; anything tasty and sticky enough that the treat remains irresistible and the pill has to go down with it.

If I may add one additional note, I’m a big fan of all natural products with organic being a bonus. If you can, try to avoid the peanut butters that have added sugars, salts, oils and preservatives. The ingredients list should say peanuts, period. You and your dog will benefit from the switch.

Hey, look ma! Rover likes it!

-Chad Culp, Certified Dog Trainer and Canine Behavior Consultant

© Thriving Canine 2013