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Home > See the Signs
Here are some of the signs that your pet may be suffering from some type of chronic pain:
Changes to normal behaviors such as decreased ambulation or activity, lethargic attitude, decreased appetite, decreased self-grooming (cats).
Expressions of abnormal behaviors such as inappropriate elimination, vocalization, aggression, decreased interaction with other pets or family members, altered facial expressions, altered posture, restlessness, hiding (especially in cats).
Reaction to touch such as increased body tension or flinching in response to gentle palpation of the injured area and palpation of regions likely to be painful, e.g., neck, back, hips, elbows (cats).
Physiologic parameters like elevations in heart rate, respiratory rate, body temperature, and blood pressure or pupil dilation.
Current pain relief products for pets such as NSAIDs (just for dogs) such as Carprofen (Novox or Rimadyl), Deracoxib (Deramaxx), Etodolac (Etogesic), Firocoxib (Previcox), Meloxicam (Metacam ) or Tepoxalin ( Zubrin) have been shown to cause kidney, liver, or digestive problems. Cats do not tolerate NSAIDs of any kind well. The only approved NSAID for cats in the United States is meloxicam and it is only approved for a single post-surgical injection to relieve pain. The dose must be exactly correct for the cat’s weight. If it is given longer to cats, it often causes severe kidney damage.
Other Medications such as Amantadine, Gabapentin and Tramadol may cause upset stomach, decreased heart rate, panting, and constipation. Veterinarians may prescribe stronger opiates only for a short periods. They usually don’t prescribe steroids for pain, as they can have serious side effects. Veterinarians are usually hesitant to utilize pain therapies in companion animals because of the following: significant side effects, including nausea, vomiting, drowsiness, itching, constipation and respiratory depression; buildup of tolerance to analgesic requiring higher dosage over time to experience same effect; addictive properties that include severe withdrawal symptoms.