Is your dog in pain?
There's lots of reasons your dog could be in pain, from trauma and inflammation, to bites and wounds. Osteoarthritis and joint changes also cause pain. Most complaints are treated with pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce the animal's suffering.
You must make sure your dog is examined to find the source before giving any painkillers.
A dog that is in pain usually has difficulty settling down, loses its appetite and can become very stressed. If you suspect that your dog is not feeling well, don't wait to make an appointment with your vet.
Signs your dog could be in pain
- Subdued and low, or seem sad
- Refusing to go for a walk
- Difficulty standing up, stiffness and lameness
- Changed general condition with fatigue/lethargy
- Repeated licking in and around the sore area
- Difficulty settling down
Pain treatment for dogs
Sometimes pain relievers are the only way to improve the dog's quality of life. Anti-inflammatory medications help reduce swelling and inflammation in muscles and tissues, providing pain relief. Infected wounds may also sometimes require painkillers for both cleaning and treatment.
It's important to consider that anti-inflammatory medications can also cause nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea in dogs with sensitive stomachs.
There are diseases where pain relief is not always the only option. Arthritis can cause great pain but is a progressive disease that can be alleviated with the help of exercise and keeping your dog at a healthy weight. Your dog's weight and condition are absolutely crucial for them to feel good.
Excess weight puts strain on the joints and causes osteoarthritis to develop more quickly. Physical activity creates muscle mass that helps support the joints. This can lower the pain levels for your dog when they move.
Preventing pain in your dog
To reduce your dog's suffering, it is important that you pay attention to your dog's behaviour. Does they move differently? Do they have difficulty walking? Maybe they've lost the appetite? There are many signs that your dog is in pain. If you suspect that the dog is unwell, you should contact a veterinarian immediately.
Important note on painkillers
Never give your dog painkillers intended for humans. It can lead to damage to internal organs. Animals may only be treated with painkillers prescribed by a veterinarian.
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