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The Power of Pain Management

Pain management is one of the most overlooked areas of senior pet care. Many pet parents think their companion animals slow down from old-age, but in fact, it is often pain, not age, slowing them down. Unlike hospice care, pain management and palliative care are not reserved just for end-of-life scenarios, though they are an important part of hospice care planning. The right combination of pain management can actually be restorative and add years to a pet’s enjoyment of life. We are committed to providing your pet with compassionate care for optimal comfort and a life worth living.

PLEASE NOTE: Due to our current case load, we are not able to schedule new Hospice Consultations or Palliative Care Consultations. We will continue to help families say goodbye in their home and we can help families with end of life decisions through a virtual Quality of Life Consultation with one of our specially trained Veterinarians.

Common Causes of Pain in Senior Pets

Animals, especially older ones, instinctively try to hide pain or weakness because it puts them at risk from predators. A key aspect of Pain Management is to identify the source of your pet’s pain.

Common Sources of Pain Include:

  • Arthritis
  • Cancer
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • IVDD
  • Chronic disease and a variety of other conditions

Our Pain Management programs are as unique as your pet because different sources of pain require different treatment plans.

Recognizing Pain in Your Pet

The most common signs of pain in your pet are:

  • Decreased activity – Take notice if your pet is not playing as much as usual
  • Not going up or down stairs – This could be an early sign of osteoarthritis
  • Difficulty standing after lying down – can also be a sign of osteoarthritis
  • Over grooming or licking a particular area – can be a sign of referred pain
  • Decreased appetite – this can signal mouth pain
  • Reluctance to jump up onto surfaces – this especially applies to cats
  • Behavior changes – such as growling at fellow companion animals or withdrawal

Download a detailed description of Signs of Pain in Dogs from the AAHA.

Download a detailed description of Signs of Pain in Cats from the AAHA.

Resources for Identification and Management of Pain

How To Tell If Your Pet Is In Pain

This short article and infographic will help you identify some of the common signs that your pet is in pain.

Managing Arthritis Pain

This article discusses arthritis in senior cats and dogs, which is the leading cause of pain in aging pets.