Yay!! Keep trying!!
When you are there, no bottles. You can't be associated with bottles. See...I know this because DH gave bottles. Before, when we night weaned, I had DH take over night time parenting because they didn't expect to eat from him. Well, Gavin does. And now we are having a heck of a time night weaning him. If he won't nurse, feed any other way. And switch to a bottle that is much harder to get milk from. Like try a Breastflow. An Adiri. Something.
Gavin had to use special feeders. Cleft babies are not like regular babies. When we even stopped the feeders, it was for an even more specialized feeder the hospital gave us for post-op use. Then when he was able, we started using Breastflow bottles, to teach him to suck, but the damage was done. He had lost his ability to nurse and it traumatized him. He never would nurse. I offer now, and he either turns away or cries. When he was a tiny baby, I had "nursed" him with an SNS, but it took so long, I had to top him up, and I was pumping, and the doctors were riding me about his weight, that I quit; it didn't help that I started to have lipase again, and I filled the SNS with some lipase milk one day and he refused to drink it. And I regret it. I should have also finished at the breast, even if he couldn't nurse.
You need a bigger syringe. Ask your vet for a 20 cc syringe.
And yes, you could do pancakes, although he still needs breastmilk or formula as his primary source of nutrition at this age. So I would not do bottles of water. I would leave them bottles of milk, but see above. And depending on how solds go for him and how long you are away, you might be able to wean early from pumping. My third would not take bottles well at all, I worked 2x a week, and when he was 9-10 months, I quit leaving bottles for him. Heate solids while I was away and nursed on demand when with me. Nursed that kid well into my next pregnancy
I have always nightweaned after 12 months. Or let them do it on their own.