Nobody enjoys taking medication, and our pets are no different. Many pets are accomplished pill-avoiders (the dog who eats the entire hotdog you hid the pill in, yet somehow manages to spit the pill out, or the cat who magically disappears for hours right around medication time). It can be frustrating, to say the least, and may even be dangerous for a pet who relies on daily medication.

Pet owners struggling with getting pets to take medication often turn to pill pockets for help. Pet pill pockets are an ingenious (and tasty) way to trick even the most astute pet into swallowing his or her medication, and the team at Oakland Veterinary Referral Services has the inside scoop on how to make your own!

A Spoonful of (Natural) Sugar

The pet products industry has jumped on the pill pocket bandwagon, and there are several varieties available at most major retailers. Not only are commercially made pill pockets often filled with undesirable ingredients (wheat, corn, sugar, and food coloring, to name a few), but they can also become expensive when a pet needs daily medication to treat an ongoing health issue.

Enter the DIY pet pill pocket! Besides saving money, making your own pet pill pockets allows you to customize the ingredients, flavor, and size to suit the needs and tastes of your individual pet with the option to use natural ingredients.

DIY Pet Pill Pockets

You probably already have everything you need in your kitchen to whip up a batch of pet pill pockets. Check out this video for real, natural food ideas and examples, or simply combine two or more of the following pet-friendly ingredients (avoid chocolate or anything sweetened with Xylitol), mold into a traditional pill pocket shape, and freeze on a cookie sheet (if necessary):


  • Oat flour
  • Almond flour
  • Coconut flour
  • Canned pumpkin
  • Canned tuna, sardines or chicken
  • Ground beef

Mix with

  • Nut butter
  • Coconut oil
  • Cream cheese
  • Cottage cheese
  • Tahini

The best treats support your pet in staying healthy and energetic, which is why it’s important to choose nutrient-dense ingredients for your DIY pet pill pockets. Too many treats can add unnecessary calories to your pet’s diet. Be sure to make your pockets large enough to hide the pill, but small enough that your pet isn’t getting too many extra calories added to his or her diet.

OVRS Can Help

If you are still having difficulties getting your pet to swallow his or her medications, or have any questions about which people foods are safe for pets to eat, please contact the staff at OVRS for assistance.