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Allegra has been on several different medications for the past few years. Since she needs to be on half and quarter sizes of some of her pills, that means I have to cut pills. It’s been a bit of a frustrating journey to find a solution that would cut her pills as accurately as possible. I was thrilled when I discovered a hack that has made the whole process so much easier.

Why pill cutters and knives don’t work well for small pills

There are endless models of pill cutters available online. I’ve found that none of them work well when it comes to cutting already small pills into halves and quarters. Allegra’s pills are scored down the center, which makes cutting them in half with a pill cutter or sharp knife relatively easy, but when it comes to cutting them in quarters, they tend to crumble, which meant that I ended up throwing out a lot of pills.

A brilliant hack to make cutting pills easy

Then I came across a video by Ingrid Johnson, a certified cat behaviorist and owner of Fundamentally Feline. She uses a brilliant hack to cut even tiny pills easily and far more accurately than any knife or pill cutter will do: a pair of surgical quality nail trimmers.

After I first saw the video, I thought why not try this with my regular small cat nail trimmers. That actually worked, but I didn’t want those trimmers to get dulled by frequent pill cutting. Trimming Allegra’s nails is hard enough as it is, and I need the trimmers to be sharp enough to cut on the first try. So instead, I purchased the same trimmers that are used in the video, the Miltex Vantage White Dog Nail Scissors. Miltex specializes in making surgical instruments, and these nail trimmers are top notch. Please note that similar scissors are available on Amazon, but they will most likely not the same quality as the Miltex brand.

Pretty Litter

These scissors have made nail trimming a much simpler and quicker task, and more importantly, I no longer waste pills. Initially I still had some waste, but that was mostly due to me not lining the trimmers up correctly. Once I got the hang of it, no more wasted pills.


Medicating Allegra

I’m lucky that Allegra is extremely easy to medicate. She gets three different medications twice a day, and I put all of her pills for each round into an an empty gel cap. She lets me pop that right down her throat.

I follow this with a creamy treat.  Medication should never be given without a chaser of either water, broth or wet food. “Dry pilling” can cause serious damage to the esophageal lining.

Allegra has gotten so used to this routine that she will actually demand her medication on days when I run a little behind schedule. Of course, what she really wants is the treat, but it’s still cute when she comes looking for me.

A note about the photo at the top of the post: I wear gloves when I cut Allegra’s thyroid pills. I’m probably being overly cautious, but there is a small chance that Allegra’s thyroid medication could be absorbed through my skin while I handle the pills, and since I take thyroid medication myself, I’d rather be safe than sorry. Since I place her medications inside an unflavored gel cap, I don’t wear gloves when I give her her medication. Always check with your veterinarian about any precautions you should take while handling your cat’s medication.

Image Depositphotos

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7 Comments on This Hack Will Let You Easily and Accurately Cut Pills for Your Cat

  1. I ordered the scissors to have on hand. I generlly break Tasha’s Cisapride into 4 pieces by my fingers. This will make the pieces more uniform and easier to do. Thanks for the great tip!

  2. That’s brilliant! I never would’ve thought of a nail clipper. Now, I need a surefire way to get meds into my cats (not now, thank goodness). None of my 7 cats (including my two babies today) have ever let me medicate them. No Greenies pill pocket, powder in food, attempt to get them to swallow a pill was ever successful.

    • I’m sure you’re going to be inundated by suggestions, so here ya go. I give my girl a good couple of slurps of Churu and then stuff the pill to the back of her throat, then immediately give her some more. After that she has to share the rest with her sister. As with Ingrid, she ALWAYS reminds me when it is time!
      Pill pockets are a paw down. Can’t even use them for ‘treats’.

  3. Wow! This is brilliant! I have purchased various pill cutters over the years, and none of them worked properly. At best, I ended up with one half of a pill that was useable, while the other half was partially crushed into a powder, making that half unusable and wasting money. Usually though, I ended up with a completely unusable pill.
    I’m going to purchase the Miltex Vantage White Dog Nail Scissors today. Can’t wait to try them. Thanks Ingrid!

  4. I never thought about nail trimmers for cutting pills. I have a really old pill cutter that I use. I got when Pono started needing medication. I think what makes it work so well is the safety guard (that covers the razor blade) broke off soon after I bought it. I just have to be very careful when I use it.

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