Dogs feel pain for many of the same reasons as humans: infections, dental problems, arthritis, bone disease, and cancer. They also feel discomfort following surgical procedures.
Unfortunately, unlike humans, they are unable to speak to us about when and where they hurt.
Whining, howling, whimpering, yelping, groaning, grunting
Decreased appetite, withdraws from social interaction, changes in sleeping or drinking, lapses in housetraining, sleeps more
Licking, biting, scratching a particular part of its body
Restless, reluctant to move, difficulty getting up from a laying position, repetitively gets up and lies down, trembling, circling or lying very still, seeks more affection than usual
Grimaces, vacant stare, glazed, wide-eyed or looks sleepy, enlarged pupils, flattened ears, pants excessively when at rest
Coat lacks normal shine, hair stands up in places
Protects a body part, doesn’t put weight on a limb, limps, doesn’t want to be held or picked up, hides
Aggressive: (especially a previously friendly dog)
Acts out of character, growls, hisses, bites, pins ears back, a normally aggressive dog may act quiet, docile
Hunched, with hindquarters raised and front end down on the ground, lays on its side.
As with cats, never administer pain medication without consulting your veterinarian. After diagnosing the problem, your veterinarian will explain the benefits, risks and costs associated with various treatment options. That way, you and your veterinarian can choose the approach that best meets the needs of you and your dog.