dog in pain

One of the worst nightmares of every pet owner is seeing their pets cry due to pain and not understanding how to help them. When a dog is in pain, there will be significant changes in its behavior. Loss of appetite is one of the common signs that your pet is not feeling okay. Cats tend to hide away when they are in pain, making it hard for the fur parent to notice the symptoms. They might need pet pain medications due to a broken tooth, an injury, or an underlying health condition.



Pet Pain Management

pet medication by vetThe good news is that there are many ways to provide pain relief, and veterinarians can prescribe medications safe for dogs. However, it would help a lot to know the side effects of each medication to know if it’s working for your fur baby.

NSAIDs for Dogs

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can also be found in human medications. These drugs help reduce swelling, inflammation, and stiffness in dogs, cats, and humans. As a matter of fact, NSAIDs can give pain relief for dogs who have chronic pain due to arthritis or those who need to recover from surgeries.

But it is still important to ask your dog’s vet for safety purposes. Do not give your dog an NSAID medicine without consulting a veterinarian; this might harm your pet. However, there are specific NSAIDs that are safe for dogs, such as follows:

Deracoxib -Deramaxx. Deracoxib (Deramaxx) is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug that vets often prescribe for dogs to control postoperative pain and inflammation related to dental and orthopedic operations.

Meloxicam -Metacam. Meloxicam (Metacam) is a powerful painkiller. Due to its potency, it is one of the NSAIDs that requires a prescription used to treat pain.

Firocoxib -Previcox. Veterinarians commonly use Firocoxib (Previcox) to relieve a dog’s pain. It is usually given to dogs with osteoarthritis conditions.

Carprofen -Novox or Rimadyl. Carprofen (Novox or Rimadyl) is an NSAID medication used to alleviate pain in dogs. This is basically ibuprofen for humans.

Overall, anti-inflammatory drugs NSAIDs are safe for dog use. But the side effects in a dog’s kidney, stomach, and whole body could result in severe complications.

Effects of NSAIDs on Dogs

A lot of over-the-counter drugs fall under the category of non-steroidal inflammatory medicines. Some of its common examples are aspirin, naproxen, and ibuprofen. Basically, they all work to promote pain management and provide pain relief. However, overusing NSAIDs or giving them to your dog without consulting a veterinarian might result in uncontrollable effects such as:

  1. gastrointestinal ulcers
  2. vomiting
  3. fever
  4. appetite loss
  5. kidney failure
  6. liver damage
  7. bleeding
  8. skin redness
  9. diarrhea
  10. changes in behavior

Aspirin is generally okay for dogs. Their vet might allow a safe dosage and amount of this medicine in a short period. It is not supposed to be taken for a long period of time due to the serious risks it poses. Vets are particularly concerned about few factors that contribute to problems in dogs that take medications. For instance, some fur parents give their dogs a high amount of dosage without proper consultation. If you notice that your dog’s reaction to the drugs is somehow bothersome, stop giving them the medication and call an animal doctor immediately.

Other Pain Relief Options

Since NSAIDs usually relieve pain instantly, veterinary doctors don’t usually recommend other pain relief methods for dogs. But in rare cases, your dog might need other choices. Depending on your dog’s health condition, the vet might consider giving tramadol or gabapentin. Tramadol is commonly given to older dogs. It treats pain by working like opioid medications. Some of its side effects include stomach pain and dizziness. On the other hand, gabapentin is typically prescribed with other drugs. Its effects include sleepiness that goes away in few days.


Supplements are also safe replacements for medical treatments. Although further research may be needed, some studies suggest that they help in reducing swelling and promote cartilage self-repair. Before replacing medications with supplements, be sure to ask your doctor about their safety first.

Symptoms That Your Dog is in Pain

It’s easy to see if dogs are in pain if they are naturally active and energetic. On the contrary, it’s quite hard to see the pain in a usually quiet dog and behaved. As a pet owner, it is one of your responsibilities to read their body language and changes in their behavior. Oftentimes, the symptoms are right in front of us, but because we lack knowledge about animal care, we tend to overlook all the important things. Here are the common signs that your dog needs medical attention:

Aggressiveness and antisocial behavior. Your dog might stop running towards you after you get home if they feel pain. Their usually happy and bubbly self will become grumpy all of a sudden.

loss of appetiteChanges in daily habits. They will also start to exhibit changes in appetite and sleeping habits. Either they sleep almost all of the time, or they do not touch the food you serve.

Problems in movements. One of the most common signs of pain in dogs is when they start to move stiffly. Simple tasks such as walking become pretty challenging for them.

Trembling or shaking. When a dog is shaking, it’s usually due to fear. But if they are shaking even though they are in their comfort zone, that might indicate that they are suffering from pain.

Restlessness. When your dog starts to walk back and forth or show signs of restlessness, it might be due to discomfort.







Nine warning signs that could mean your dog is in pain (

What Can I Give My Dog for Pain Relief? (

Pain Medications for Dogs (