Comments & suggestions  should be directed to jroese@lssu.edu Visit my website Oral Gavage Oral gavage is commonly used in drug and toxicology studies to deliver a precise amount of test material, and can also be used to administer medications.  A special gavage needle with a ball at the end is used to deliver materials directly into the stomach.  The ball on the gavage needle prevents entry into the trachea.  The length of the gavage tube required is determined by measuring the distance from the mouth to the last rib.  The rat should be held with the head and neck extended and in line with the back.  If the gavage tube does not easily pass into the esophagus, remove it and try again. A gavage needle is used to deliver materials directly into the stomach.  The animal is held with head and neck extended. The length of the gavage tube is determined by measuring from the mouth to the last rib.  Insert the gavage needle with gentle, steady pressure.  Administer the substance slowly.  No resistance should be felt.