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A Spoonful of Sugar

Filed in - Small Pets - Clicker Digest

Medicating a sick pet is a source of frustration for many owners. On the Clicker Bunny and Critters mailing list, a list member needed to give oral medication to an unsocialized frightened bunny who had recently joined her family. She was using a syringe to squirt the medicine into her bunny's mouth, but the process was a struggle each time.

List members recommended using banana or unsweetened applesauce as a treat. Using the syringe to deliver the soft fruit would help associate the syringe with "good things," making the bunny more relaxed when his owner medicated him. This protocol might help only a little bit with this round of medicine, but if the owner regularly uses the syringe to deliver treats, delivering the medicine would likely be easier next time, especially if the vet allows the medicine to be diluted into the applesauce to help make it more palatable.

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