Thursday, December 22, 2022

How to Manage Your Cat's Medication Schedule

Cat getting medicine.

Carmine and Tylan both have chronic medical conditions they need to take daily, weekly, and monthly medications to manage. Carmine gets his gabapentin twice a day, his telmisartan and zofran once a day, his adequan injection once a week, and his B12 injection and allergy shot once a month. Tylan gets his methimazole twice a day and his zofran and benazepril once a day. He also gets prednisolone, but how much he gets per day varies by week. And we won't even discuss what Carmine's immunotherapy schedule looked like before he made it to the maintenance stage. 

When your cats take medication, it can be easy to forget a dose or to give the medication at the wrong time. I've found several things to help me manage my boys' medication schedules that you might find useful in managing your cat's medications as well.

Set Reminders: Whenever I need to add a new medication or a new medication time to the boys' schedule, I set a reminder on my Echo Dot. Alexa reminds me to give the medication at the appropriate time. For instance, Alexa announces, "Give Carmine adequan," every Wednesday at 6:45pm. 

If you don't have an Echo Dot, you can set an alarm on your cell phone. Some medication organizers also have alarms you can set to remind you to give your cat his medication at the right time. 

Tylan's pill organizer.
Tylan's pill organizer has a separate container for each day of the week with a compartment for morning and night pills. 

Use Pill Organizers: When you're managing multiple medications, it can be challenging remembering which medication to give at which time. If your cat gets pills, medi melts, quad tabs, or compounded medication treats, you can put them into a pill organizer to help you keep track of which medications to give at various times of the day. You can invest in pill organizers that have one, two, three, or four compartments for each day of the week. 

Carmine and Tylan each have a pill organizer with two compartments for each day of the week - morning and night. Taking the time to fill a pill organizer once a week actually saves me time at medication time as I don't have to take out each bottle of pills and cut them into the appropriate dosages. If you have more than one cat, you can either get identical pill organizers and label each one with a different cat's name or buy a different pill organizer for each cat in your home that takes medication. I found these pill organizers for Carmine and Tylan; I use the pink one for Carmine and the green one for Tylan. 

Pill organizers.
Carmine's and Tylan's pill organizers.

Choose a Meaningful Day: If you need to give a medication once a month, I suggest choosing a day that holds some kind of significance for you. For instance, I give Carmine his once-monthly B12 injection on the 18th of each month. February 18th is Carmine's birthday, so I'm unlikely to forget the day. 

You could choose the date of your birthday, your cat's birthday, your cat's Gotcha Day, your wedding anniversary, or some other meaningful day for a once-monthly medication. 

Write It Down: Personally, I like writing my to-do lists on paper or in a daily planner. A lot of people I know prefer to write their lists in an online app or calendar. Whatever you prefer, it's helpful to write down medication times. I write Carmine's weekly adequan injection in my daily planner as well as on my white board calendar. Having it written down in multiple spots ensures that I will see it the day I need to give Carmine his injection. I do the same thing for his B12 injection. 

Carmine's immunotherapy schedule.
Carmine's immunotherapy injection schedule.

Erratic Medication Schedules: When Carmine initially began his immunotherapy, the schedule of injections was erratic. I did a couple of things to help me stay on track with his injections. First, I tacked his immunotherapy schedule to my bulletin board. I put a thumb tack above the day we were on and moved it to the next dose when I'd given the injection for the day. So, on day 1, I put the thumb tack above, "Day 1." I gave Carmine his injection for the day and moved the thumb tack to, "Day 3." 

The second thing I did was count the days in my daily planner. I wrote down, "Day 1," on the first day of Carmine's immunotherapy. Then I'd write down, "Day 3," on day 3, "Day 5," on day 5, and so on. Counting the days in my daily planner helped me stay on tack with his injection schedule. 

Label It: Some medications are time-sensitive and may go bad before you have a chance to use it all. This is often the case with insulin for diabetic cats, for instance. Carmine takes Vetsulin for his steroid-induced diabetes. Vetsulin is only good for 60 days after you puncture the vial. 

In order for me to keep track of when Carmine's insulin is going to go bad, I write down when I puncture a new vial in my daily planner. I then count 60 days from that date and write down that I need to discard the vial of insulin on that date. I also write the date I puncture the vial on the insulin box. 

As you can see, I've come up with a lot of tricks to managing Carmine's and Tylan's  medications. I hope that some of the tricks I've developed can help you manage your cat's medication schedule, too.

Do you have other tips or tricks for managing your cat's medication schedule? Please share them with me in the comments section. 


  1. Good tips!
    We kept Celestial Chuck's pills in containers; he got a different set in the AM and PM.
    The hard part was keeping the larder stocked; shipments didn't arrive fast enough sometimes.

  2. I used to give the same meds at the same time every day, with Minko, so I didn't have to do much by way of remembering, because it was all in the spot where I had to hand feed him. And his B12 injections were on the first each month, so that was easy enough for me to remember.
    I do think these same principles could apply to humans who are on strange/irregular medication regimes. I keep all mine in those pill holders, so its easy to see if I forgot a dose.

  3. Great post. I never thought of a voice reminder like Echo dot. Emmy has 7 meds, mist twice a day and 2 as needed. XO

  4. Great info. It sure does get confusing at times as to who gets what when.

  5. Wow, that's a great system, Sierra. We usuallyend up making a chart, but thankfully no one has needed meds here in a while. XO