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Is Your Dog in Pain? Observe His Behavior for Signals

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Dog in pain

Jessie, your early-in-the-week dog blogger who offers more educational and informative posts than that “TGIF cat Party Marty” does on Fridays: 

I don’t know where you live, but here in the Midwest, the sun is shining and the air is warm! Yes…spring is nearly upon us and I could not be happier. Plus, having lost an hour to daylight savings time this weekend means that Party Marty is lagging today and will not interrupt my work! In fact, he is still sleeping and I suspect that he thinks it’s still last week! So, without wasting another minute, I wanted to discuss today’s topic:   Recognizing the various ways that dogs will show you they are in pain.

We are strong and noble creatures and pride ourselves on our ability to endure so much. We may not always vocalize when we are in pain, however, so if you notice your dog doing any of the following actions, a visit to the veterinarian may be in order.

If your dog is constantly grooming a localized area on his body, he is probably hurting there, especially if the grooming is obsessive. Some grooming is obviously normal, but if he continues to lick and attempts to take care of the pain himself, it is time for you to step in and take action.

If your dog is panting but has not been exposed to heat nor is exhausted from play or other physical activity, the panting could be stress-induced due to pain and discomfort.

Just as many humans lose their appetites when they are in pain or not feeling well, dogs may avoid the food bowl. Be in tune with any sudden changes in appetite.

If your dog is normally happy to race to the door to greet you each day but then suddenly shows no interest in doing so…or does not want to walk up the stairs, or cries when you pick up him, those are red flags. Dogs can often become antisocial and may often “hide” to avoid attention when they are feeling sick or are in pain.

So, if you notice your dog exhibiting any or all of these behaviors, please have him seen by your veterinarian as soon as possible. (Now if Party Marty is hiding somewhere or avoiding social interactions, I simply assume he is up to something mischievous and must stay alert for other reasons!)

Thanks to the for this helpful information!


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