What Can I Give My Dog For Pain?
No one wants to see their dog in pain, but it can be difficult to know what you should do in order to relieve it. Whether they’re ailed by an injury, infection, diseases, or just the effects of aging, it’s vital that you understand what the best medication is to help your dog feel better.
How Do I Know If My Dog Is In Pain?
Unlike humans, dogs can’t just tell us when they’re in pain. If anything, it’s in a dog’s nature to hide that pain as much as possible and only show it when they have no other choice. That’s why dog owners should be able to recognize the signs of pain in dogs and take action accordingly.
Dogs are often in pain when they:
- Have aggressive or other anti-social behavior changes
- Start drinking more or less water than normal
- Sleep more often
- Eat far less
- Start making more noise, such as barking, snarling, growling, yelping, or howling
- Excessively lick themselves, especially in one spot
- Have a tendency to pant heavy or breathe erratically
- Have mobility issues
- Become restless and being unable to sleep
- Experience swelling on any part of their body
- Shake or tremor, especially when standing
If you dog begins to show any of the symptoms above, then it’s time to call their veterinarian and see what can be done for treatment. It is also time to begin administering some form of pain relief to help your dog cope with the pain they’re in.
What Kind of Painkillers Can You Give To Your Dog?
We highly recommend seeking out a veterinarian when your dog is experiencing any form for pain, especially when you are unaware what the source of their pain may be.
If your dog is in pain, your vet may prescribe a NSAID for dogs. NSAID stands for “non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug,” which is used to temporarily refuse swelling, stiffness, and joint pain. They work by blocking the effects of pain-inducing enzymes. NSAIDs are super effective, but they should only be prescribed by a vet.
Common NSAIDs for pets include the following:
- Deramaxx (generic name deracoxib)
- Metacam (generic name feloxicam)
- Previcox (generic name firocoxib)
- Rimadyl (generic name novox carprofen)
Please note that while humans also use NSAIDs to relieve pain, you cannot give your dog the medicine you use for yourself. Human NSAIDs, such as Naproxen and Ibuprofen are extremely toxic to pets.
Symptoms of poisoning caused by consuming human NSAIDs include vomiting, diarrhea, kidney failure, gastrointestinal bleeding, liver failure, and death.
However, dogs can safely consume over the counter aspirin. The safe amount is determined by your dog’s size and weight. Your veterinarian will be able to prescribe what the safe amount should be. Since it can be easy to overdose, we recommend only giving your dog aspirin when your veterinarian prescribes it.
Alternatives to NSAIDS for Dogs
While NSAIDs are the most effective pain medication for dogs, it’s not the only options out there. Alternative medications include:
- Amantadine (best for treating arthritis, disk disease, and cancer)
- Gabapentin (best for treating nerve pain and seizures)
- Tramadol (best for treating chronic pain due to aging)
- CBD Treats or Oil (best for treating minor pain and anxiety; CBD is unregulated and lack formal research, so take caution before administering to your pet)
If medicine is not the solution for you or your dog, you can also investigate holistic treatments like massages, aromatherapy, and acupuncture. These alternative treatments can help dogs to cope with pain, but are ineffective by themselves. They are best used to complement medicine.