Your dog could be ‘in serious pain’ but suffering in silence, vets have warned – but some surprising signs may show if your pooch is need of help.
Our silent companions can oftentimes sense when we’re down – and so it’s natural to want to offer our four-tailed pals the same comfort.
In a blog post, Vets Now – a UK-based out-of-hours emergency and critical care service for pets – has revealed some subtle tell-tale pointers to look out for.
However, they also stress that any behavioural changes are worth keeping an eye on.
One of the most easy to spot is perhaps anti-social or aggressive behaviour. This could see your pet stop running to greet you at the door or even hide away from you – so make sure to keep an eye out.
In a blog post, Vets Now – an out-of-hours emergency and critical care service for pets – has revealed some subtle tell-tale pointers to look out for (stock image used)
Other potential signals of pain could be your dog being more vocal in their yelping, heavy panting even without exercising and reduced interest in activity or exercise.
Body and posture changes may also important. This may been a ‘hunched’, ‘rigid’ position, or a big ‘downward dog’ style stretch which allows them to focus on their abdominal area if there is pain in that region.
Any irregularities in eating, drinking or sleeping habits are also important to consider.
A dog that is in pain is likely to sleep more in an attempt to heal and rest, and, much like humans, a loss of appetite or any changes to our regular food and drink schedules may signal a symptom of underlying issues.
If your dog is struggling to eat, or chew dry an/or firm food, dental pain could be at play, the outlet added.
And sometimes, the signs may even be a little surprising and initially seem like a positive.
While we want our pups to take care of themselves, excessive grooming may also be a sign that something is wrong – especially if they’re constantly licking their paws, which the posts says is a typical first response to cleaning and tending to a wound.
Vets also advise to keep an eye on mobility issues, especially if they spot stiffness of limping, which could mean an injury, sore paws or in some cases, arthritis.
One of the most easy to spot is perhaps anti-social or aggressive behaviour. This could see your pet stop running to greet you at the door or even hide away from you – so make sure to keep an eye out (stock image used)
Other potential signs of pain are agitation – such as restlessness or a difficulty to get comfortable – and shaking or trembling, which may even be a symptom of something as serious as poisoning or kidney disease.
It comes as the lockdown boom in pet ownership has led to an ‘extremely worrying’ rise in aggressive behaviour by dogs, according to a survey of vets.
Half of vets in the UK have reported a rise in the number of clients concerned about their dogs’ increasingly aggressive behaviour over the last 12 months, the survey shows.
While vets in the survey were often unsure about the exact age of the dogs involved, in cases where the age was known, 87 per cent of dogs were believed to be under three years of age.
Almost one in four (24 per cent) of vets also reported an increase in the number of pets they had treated in the last 12 months who were injured as a result of aggressive behaviour by dogs.
The British Veterinary Association, who commissioned the survey, said the findings highlight the longer-term impacts on puppies bought over lockdown in 2020-2021.