Loading A Syringe With Nutri-Cal

by Dian Blanchard, Tiny Toi Imperial Shih Tzu

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In the article titled Nutri-Cal, we discussed the uses of this tasty supplement designed to provide extra calories and nutrition for cats.

While low blood sugar is not something we observe in kittens very often, Nutri-Cal is a routine part of the experienced cat breeder's medical bag as it is essential in maintaining the caloric needs of a cat or kitten who is not eating, especially due to illness.

While many cats will lick Nutri-Cal directly from the tube or off your finger, some cats require a more forceful method of feeding.

Fortunately, an easy way of feeding Nutri-Cal to an uncooperative feline is by loading a syringe with the Nutri-Cal. This then allows you to easily syringe the product directly on to the back of the cat's tongue.

You can purchase a 3cc syringe at your local pharmacy (without the needle) and Nutri-Cal is available at pet stores such as PetCo and PetsMart, your vet's office, or online from pet supply stores. 


Remove the plunger from the 3cc syringe . . .

Place the large opening of the barrel of the syringe over the opening of the tube of Nutri-Cal.

Load the syringe holding it upright.

Squeeze the paste into the large opening until the syringe is about half full.

Hold the tube and syringe together and move it horizontally before removing the tube - or the paste will quickly ooze out. 

Remove the tube.

Place the plunger in the syringe.

Don't push the plunger in too far - yet!

Hold the syringe upright.

Push the paste to the top of the syringe.

You may need to tap the syringe as you push down on the plunger to help remove the air from the syringe.

To administer the Nutri-Cal, firmly grip the kitten's head with one hand.   Force its mouth open with your index finger. 

Place the syringe tip on the back of the tongue and push the paste into the mouth.

Remove the syringe and hold the mouth closed for a few seconds — long enough for the the Nutri-Cal to melt in the mouth.

Once the syringe is empty, clean it with hot running water.

That's all there is to it . . .

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About The Author:

Dian Blanchard breeds and shows Shih Tzu under the kennel name, Tiny Toi Imperial. This article was originally written in reference to puppies. The small toy breed puppies can sometimes experience a drop in blood sugar, called hypoglycemia, if they have been playing too long or have not eaten enough. The puppy will become lethargic, glassy eyed, wobbly and/or difficult to wake up.  If not treated immediately the puppy may have a seizure and the condition can possibly lead to death.  The treatment for a puppy with these symptoms is to immediately administer 1cc or 1" of NutriCal to the back of the mouth.  The puppy's body is then massaged to stimulate blood flow. Improvement should be observed within 10 minutes. If no improvement occurs within that timeframe, the puppy must see a veterinarian immediately. This can be a life-threatening condition.

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