The International Veterinary Academy of Pain Management (IVAPM) has declared September as the Pain awareness month for pets.
Dogs, like humans, feel pain too. When in pain humans lie down in silence, cry, roll and complain. But, that is not the case with dogs. It is tough to find out if the dog is in pain, because they cannot talk about human language. Therefore, it is vital to monitor them all the time and consult the vet in case you see a change in their behaviour.
So how do you find out if your dog is in pain?
Limping, whining, not eating, etc. are the signs that your dog is suffering from something that he/she is not able to communicate to you.
Whining, snarling, growling, yelping, and howling are symptoms that your dog is in pain. Although it is normal behaviour for your dog to vocalize, doing it excessively is something that you have to notice of.
When hurt, the first thing that dogs do is to lick and clean the wound. This applies to both internal and external injuries as they cannot differentiate it. Therefore, if your dog is licking a spot too much, consult your vet.
All Dogs have a specific eating and sleeping pattern. In case you notice that they are not following that routine for a day or two then it is something that you must be concerned about. This can happen due to a variety of reasons and may indicate a possible health condition that is causing pain aligned with mental and physical stress.
Like humans, dogs tend to breathe fast when exposed to high physical activity. But, if your dog pants too much on a typical day with limited physical activity, consult your vet immediately. This could be due to increased heart rate.
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Eyes are a significant area of observation when it comes to pain. They tend to get smaller if your dog is suffering from eye pain and tend to get bigger if he/she is facing pain in any other part of the body.
Need for space/love
Each dog is different. Some search for their humans when they are sad or in pain while some choose to be alone and handle it themselves. If your ever-loving fido decides to stay alone or wants you more by their side, then there is something that you might want to check.
These are a few pointers to how dogs behave when in pain. That said, there is no written rule that this is how all the dogs would handle pain. It varies from dog to dog depending on their age, weight, stress, family, breed etc.