If you believe your pet is in pain, find out how your veterinarian can help you identify and help manage it for a healthier and happier life for your furry family member.
Although they may not always communicate their discomfort as clearly as humans, pets are equally as capable of feeling pain. Whether from an injury or an illness, pets feel pain and are just as in need of relief as their owners in similar circumstances. Fortunately, our veterinarians have a number of tools and techniques that can help manage and treat pain in your dog, cat or other pet. Seeking pain management for pets is an important part of being a good owner, and something we are happy to help you with.
When we refer to pain as acute, we are indicating that the pain felt by your pet is the result of something specific that happened, like getting hit by a car or being bitten by another animal. Acute pain is usually more noticeable from an owner’s perspective, as the change is often immediate and there may even be some definitive indication that the animal is distressed, like yelping, whimpering or limping.
Chronic pain is often less obvious and may take a long time to progress to the point where it is noticeable to an observer. Chronic pain can result from a wide variety of issues, such as osteoarthritis, slipped discs or other injuries that your pet may be able to compensate for somewhat, at least at first. Owners are often surprised when they bring pets in for a seemingly new problem, only for a vet to discover through examination that the problem has been ongoing.
It is important to note that while all pets may initially hide discomfort to some extent, cats are actually much more adept at disguising pain than dogs. You can often detect that your dog is feeling pain by his or her behavior, such as seeking more comfort than usual, being aggressive, worrying a spot on the body by constant licking or biting, etc. With a cat, it may be impossible for you to detect a problem without bringing your pet in for an examination.
For acute pain, there are often steps we can take as veterinarians to find the source of the pain and eliminate it, or at least minimize it. Through medication, physical therapy or surgery, it is often possible for us to address acute pain effectively.
Chronic pain can be more challenging, especially if there are no clear solutions to solve the problem permanently. However, there is still a lot that we can do in most cases to ease the pain and help your pet return to a fairly normal lifestyle. For instance, when a dog has joint issues that cause chronic pain, we can help with anti-inflammatory medication, massage, changes in diet to lose weight and more.
If you suspect your pet is in pain, or if you just want to verify that your pet is in good health, we encourage you to get in touch with our veterinarians at Town & Country Animal Hospital. You can fill out our contact form, or just give us a call at (352) 840-7020. We are here to help.