They can sense illness and anxiety in us, but it’s hard to know for sure with a pet if they are in tip-top shape!
People get seriously connected to their pets. When your pet gives you extra snuggles and kisses because you’re feeling down, it’s easy to think that you would be able to sense the same things in them and be able to provide the proper care. Unfortunately, this is not always the case, and pets can go weeks or months without proper veterinary care. How do I know if my dog is in pain? Help ensure your pet’s health by checking out the lesser known symptoms below.
Is your dog less active than usual?
Dogs that are in pain will generally be less active than they usually are. Some dogs may want to run, jump, and play, but they will limit themselves or move much slower than usual. An obvious sign of pain is the favoring of limbs, limping, or difficulty getting up and/or laying down.
Is your dog avoiding or demanding your attention?
Notice if your dog is acting needier than normal or seems more standoffish towards you. Both of these behaviors could be signs that your dog is uncomfortable or in pain. Dogs that are usually very clingy and physical with you may seem withdrawn, and prefer to be alone. Observation is crucial in this situation. Other dogs will begin to lean on you if they are feeling uncomfortable standing on their own.
Is your dog exhibiting aggressive behavior for the first time?
Some dogs that have never shown aggressive tendencies will bare their teeth or growl if they are in pain. If your dog growls or winces when you touch a specific part of their body that is a good sign that they are in some sort of pain or discomfort. Take your dog to the vet as soon as possible if they suddenly behave in an aggressive manner with you or others in your home.
Is your dog licking an area of its body more than usual?
Dogs naturally try to heal and help their wounds when they are injured. You may find that your dog is licking a part of his body obsessively. This is a behavior that also should be checked by a veterinarian. In some cases it could be allergies or heat rash, and in other situations it could be severe joint pain.
Is your dog panting excessively?
Dogs pant to cool themselves down. If your dog is panting excessively, even in cool weather and without having exercised recently, this is something to take note of. Some dogs will pant if they are in significant pain as a way of coping. Especially notice any panting happening in the middle of the night. This could be a sign of pain or anxiety.
Is your dog eating, drinking, pooping, and peeing normally?
All of these functions should be monitored if you are concerned that your dog may be sick or in pain. Some dogs may have a harder time lifting their leg to pee if one of their limbs is in pain. Also, dogs that have stopped eating must always be taken to your veterinarian to be checked out.
As adopters, we do our best to learn our dogs’ language and help them to live long, happy and comfortable lives. Do you have a surefire way to know when your dog is in pain? What behaviors have your dogs shown when they were uncomfortable? Let us know in the comments below and remember to share this post with fellow dog owners.