For a long time it was believed that animals suffer less pain than humans. Probably this wrong opinion was held because animals seldom whine and mostly try to hide their pain. Scientists nowadays agree that animals experience pain just as much as we do, and may even suffer from it more. Because while humans can often explain why they are in pain, animals suffer “for no reason” – they do not know why it “hurts” so much. And most of the time it can’t help itself.
In order to save the dog unnecessary suffering, quick help from humans is required. But before that, a person must first recognize that his dog is in pain. If the dog hobbles or evades contact, this is of course a clear signal.
But even with stomach pain it becomes difficult to recognize the symptoms. Only pet owners who watch their pet closely have a chance of noticing this pain. Because as I said: animals usually try to hide the fact that they are in pain. However, this is not vanity, but an innate behavior: whoever shows weakness, quickly becomes the victim of an enemy.
Therefore: Pay close attention to changes in your dog’s behavior and regularly check his skin and coat, his eyes and his nose. These parts of the body can show signs of illness (e.g. discharge, swelling, redness, dull fur). The same goes for feces and urine.
If the dog is in pain, there is usually a difference to “normal” behavior. You need to pay special attention to these symptoms:
When it comes to typical pain symptoms, however, there are also big differences between dogs. Which pain symptoms a dog still shows also depends on its personality. They can react aggressively or apathetically, be restless and nervous, or limp and listless. It also depends on the disease what symptoms a dog shows. Excessive tremors, for example, can also indicate some illnesses.
Dogs rarely make noises when they are in pain. They often cry out only at the first pain, but rarely “whine” or “cry” in pain. All the pet owner usually hears is a low moan. This is why it is so important to know about your dog’s normal behavior. Only those who know their dog exactly can see if something is wrong with them.
If you suspect your dog is in pain, see a veterinarian immediately. Even in the evening or on the weekend there is always a veterinarian on duty. Check with your veterinarian to find out how the emergency services are organized in your area so that you don’t have to spend a lot of time searching and asking if something goes wrong.
Many owners “wait and see” whether they show stronger symptoms and believe that otherwise it can “not be that bad”. This is a completely wrong approach: if your dog can’t help but show his pain clearly, he has come a long way through suffering, and it may even be too late to heal.
It would be completely wrong to give the animal painkillers without consulting the veterinarian. There are two reasons:
Every meaningful pain treatment begins with the search for the cause of the pain. Often it is not that easy to find. You may therefore be prepared for extensive examinations by your veterinarian. This is sometimes tedious and expensive, but the only way to get rid of the root of the problem.
In addition to treating the cause, combating pain is important so that the animal can get well again. Because today we know that chronic pain can itself become the cause of illness. Well-acting painkillers for animals are now available to veterinarians. As a dog owner, you then have two main tasks:
Be a support to your animal. The calmer you are, the more secure your dog will feel. The more restless you are, the more insecure your dog will be. Create a quiet place for him to retreat to when he needs rest. For dogs in particular, it is also important not to be excluded. They should be able to watch their families from their sick bed.
Much pain can also be relieved by warming or cold packs. Talk to your vet about what they recommend in your particular case.