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5 Signs of Pain in Dogs and Cats for National Animal Pain Awareness Month

September is Animal Pain Awareness Month. Throughout the month our veterinarians are helping to raise awareness of the sometimes subtle signs of pain in pets to help pet parents better recognize when a pet might be in pain so that dogs and cats can get the treatment and relief they need.

Why Is It Hard to Tell When a Pet Is in Pain?

In nature, animals instinctively hide signs of pain, illness, and injury because they are also signs of weakness that can make them more vulnerable to predators. Even though dogs and cats have been domesticated, they have not lost the instinct to protect themselves.
As a result, it can be extremely difficult to recognize when a pet is in pain unless the pet is experiencing fairly severe symptoms. To ensure your pets get the veterinary treatment they need, it’s up to you to pay close attention to subtle changes that could indicate illness, injury, or pain. These can sometimes be slight changes in your pet’s behavior, energy level, routine, appetite, personality, or appearance.

5 Common Signs of Pain in Dogs and Cats

1. Loss of Mobility
If your pet limps, favors a limb, or has trouble moving around like normal, they might be in pain.
2. Disinterest in Play
A normally playful pet that suddenly loses interest in fetching, chasing, running, or jumping could be experiencing pain.
3. Excessive Vocalization
If your dog or cat is whimpering, yowling, howling, growling, or hissing, they might be in pain.
4. Excessive Panting or Purring
Dogs pant at rest and cats purr excessively in an attempt to soothe themselves. This behavior could indicate pain.
5. Shivering or Trembling
In pain, your pet might tremble or shiver when at rest or when they put weight on a painful limb.

Pet Pain Management at TangleWilde Veterinary Clinic

If your pet is experiencing pain, our veterinarians can examine your pet to determine the underlying cause. We’ll then recommend a treatment plan designed to address what’s causing your pet pain while also providing symptomatic relief.
We offer a variety of treatments to help pets that are experiencing chronic or acute pain, including cold laser therapy, prescription medications, and surgery. The treatment that’s best for your pet will depend on what’s causing your pet’s pain and your pet’s overall health.
To learn more about pet pain management or to schedule an appointment for your cat or dog, we welcome you to contact our veterinary clinic in Houston today.