Max and the Pill

BACKSTORY – Early October Max hurt his front paw. The nail was split lengthwise so off to the vet we went. The vet had to cut the nail back almost to the bed and sent Max home with a bandage. Thankfully infection had not set in.

max paw

Charlie says Max should’ve had a blue bandage instead of a pink one. The plastic baggie was to keep the bandage dry since it was raining.IMG_1169

The wound healed nicely and rather quickly. 2 weeks ago Max split the nail right next to the one he hurt last month. I didn’t realize it until Max was limping and growled at me when I tried to touch his paw. Back to the vet we went.

This time Max wasn’t so lucky. The nail/claw, again cracked lengthwise, was severely infected. Dr. Baudy ended up having to cut the nail back but irrigate out the infection and ended up gluing the nail tip back on to help keep the nail clean.  This time Max was sent home with antibiotics and a pain killer.

Usually Max takes pills with no problems. Just chews them up like treats. The first day or two Max took his antibiotic just fine. Then Max started refusing the pill. I did try the whole “force the mouth open/force pill down throat” thing for 2 days but gave up. Have you ever tried to force a Pitt Bull to take a pill when he doesn’t want to? Not that Max got mean or anything – no growling or snarling. Didn’t even try to wriggle out of my grasp. Just steadfastly refused to open his mouth, despite my efforts to pry his jaws apart.

So I hit on the bright idea of putting the pill in with wet dog food. At first I just scooped out a spoonful, mushed the pill into it, and held the spoon down for Max to lick. He licked the entire spoon and left the pill right in the middle of it. *sigh*

The next step was to mix dry and wet dog food together.  Max snarfed all the food right up including the pills. Success!! For the next week this trick worked. Of course Max gets his antibiotic twice a day so I’m paying a fortune for canned dog food.

On Monday I did the usual mix of canned and dry dog food. Put the bowls down and both dogs started eating. I turned around and went about unloading the dishwasher. I heard the clatter of empty bowls being pushed around and didn’t give another thought. As I started loading the dishwasher I looked down and saw a white circle on the kitchen floor.

It was the darn antibiotic pill! Licked clean except for a tiny bit of wet dog food on the edge!  *ARGH*

Does anyone have a Jaws of Life tool I can borrow to force the darn dog’s mouth open?

By the way, Max has no issues with eating the pain pill by itself. Just the antibiotic.  Dog knows to take the good stuff.




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  1. I’ve had success with rolling it into a ball of American cheese. The cheese helps mask the scent or something. lol
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  2. I will have to try the cheese thing.