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Administering Medication to Your Chihuahua – Part Two

Administering Medication to Your Chihuahua – Part Two

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In the previous article we talked about types of medications and how to give your Chi pills and liquids. We also discussed what to do when you find it impossible to give your little one oral medication.

Although administering medications can sometimes be frustrating, don’t give up.  These drugs are necessary for your Chi and your vet will be happy to work with you to find something that both you and your Chihuahua can handle.

In this article we will discuss ear and eye medications and touch on how to give injections.

Ear Medications 

Ear medications usually come in liquid form and you will need to give a set number of drops into the ears either once or twice daily.  The trick with ear medications is that the drops need to be given far into the ear canal, meaning that you can’t often see how many drops go in.

If you fold back your Chi’s ear on to the top of their head, you will expose the largest angle of the ear canal.  You can drop the medication directly into the deepest part you see.  Sometimes veterinarians will give you a timed dosage – for example, the directions will not be “3-4 drops” but “give a 1 second squeeze”.  This allows you to put the bottle into the ear and not have to watch the drops leave the bottle.

Chi’s ears are small just like the rest of them so be careful not to insert the bottle too deeply into the ear that you cause damage.  After you have put the drops in, don’t let your Chi shakes his or her head.  Massage in front of the ear to work the medication around.  You will often hear a squishing noise.  Now your Chi can give a good head shake.

Sometimes the vet wants you to use a cotton ball to remove debris and excess medication afterward.  Follow the directions you are given and treat for the length of time that the vet recommends.  Just because the problem seems to have stopped doesn’t mean you should stop the medication.  Complete the full course just like you would with drugs like antibiotics.

Eye Medications

Eye medications come in the form of drops or ointments.  When using either form be careful that the tip of the container doesn’t touch your Chi’s eye.  Not only can you damage their eye but you contaminate the bottle.

Administer drops by putting your thumb and finger on the top and bottom eyelid.  Hold your Chi’s eye open and instil the drop of medication.  Let your Chi close their eye and gently massage to move the medication around.

Ointments can be given by pulling down the lower eyelid and squeezing the prescribed amount of drug onto the inside of the lower eyelid.  A strategy that some owners try for giving ointment is to squeeze a line of ointment onto their own finger.  Usually ointments are prescribed by length – “instil a ¼ inch strip into the right eye twice daily”.  Put ¼ inch on your finger, then pull down the lower eyelid and roll the ointment off your finger and onto the eyelid.  Your finger should be almost flat lengthwise against your Chi’s eyelid.  Make sure that the medication is safe to be on your skin.  Some ointments require you to wear gloves when using so make sure to protect yourself accordingly.

Injections

Giving injections is scary for most owners.  Poking a needle into our little Chihuahua’s skin is difficult and we feel bad for them.  With serious illnesses such as diabetes you will have no other option.

Most injections given by owners are subcutaneous, meaning they are given under the skin.  By lifting the skin between the shoulder blades where it is loose you form a tent of skin.  Poking a needle into this tent of skin ensures that you don’t hit muscle and makes the injection less painful for your Chi.

Other Tips

The biggest tip for giving medication is to get help.  Ask someone else to hold your Chi while you administer medication, freeing both your hands for the job.  Have a treat ready to give when you are finished so your Chi gets positive feedback.

Speak to your veterinarian about any concerns or problems you are having.  They are there to provide the best care for your pet and should always be willing to listen.

 

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