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Chronic pain in pets can feel like there is no way to help your pet. Nobody wants to see their pet in pain, especially when the pain is persistent and gradually worsening. When dealing with chronic pain, pets might not seem like themselves. As a caring pet owner, we know how difficult it can be to watch pain change the pet that you love so much. Luckily, thanks to modern veterinary medicine, there are ways you can help your pet deal with this chronic pain.

Noticing Chronic Pain in Pets

In order to get the proper treatment for pets in pain, you must first recognize the signs of a chronic issue. When pets have short-term pain, they are more likely to make it known. They might cry or limp and let you know that they are hurting. When their pain is chronic, however, it might be harder to spot. Common signs of chronic pain in pets include: 

  • Different eating or drinking habits
  • Desire to be alone
  • Difficulty moving
  • Trouble with stairs or jumping on the bed 
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Sudden aggression when being touched
  • Persistent licking of a specific spot
  • Stiffness
  • Limping
  • Disinterest in toys or playing
  • Behavioral changes on walks
  • Increased panting

If you notice any of these symptoms persisting, you should schedule an appointment with your veterinarian. Changes in behavior are often indicative of health issues, and quick attention is the best way to enjoy a positive outcome. Even if you think you are overreacting, it is always a good idea to check in with your veterinary team. It’s much better to find nothing than to ignore a problem that exists.

Medication for Chronic Pain in Pets

Your veterinarian might decide that medication is a good avenue to try to attack your pet’s pain. Please note, you should never give your pet human pain killers. Their system process human medications differently and the dosage is likely too strong for their smaller bodies. Always wait to talk to your veterinarian before giving your pet any kind of medication. Pay attention to dosage, and do not give your pet more than advised. Pay close attention to your pet’s behavior while on the medication, and keep your veterinarian informed of any changes you see. 

Additional Pain Management Options

New advancements in pain management technology are making it more efficient and effective than ever before. Veterinarians will often opt for a multi-modal approach to give pets the best chance to overcome their chronic pain. Finding the right combination of treatment options can give your pet the best opportunity to overcome pain. Popular pain management techniques include:

  • Laser therapy
  • Hydrotherapy
  • Shockwave therapy
  • Electrical stimulation
  • Physical rehabilitation
  • Acupuncture
  • Chiropractic care

If your veterinarian decides that your pet is dealing with chronic pain, he or she will discuss various pain management options with you. By working together, you should be able to come up with a plan to tackle the pain and help your pet return to his or her normal activity levels. 

At Westarbor Animal Hospital, we want to partner with you to give your pets the care they deserve. From pain management to wellness care, we are here to see your pets through every stage of life. To learn more about our services or to schedule an appointment, please call (734) 769-5391.

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