The hard thing about being a dog is that you can’t say when you are hurting. This is why it is your responsibility as a dog parent to know when your dog is in pain.
Admittedly it’s not a very easy job. Especially since dogs are inherently wired to hide any signs of vulnerability. It’s a trait they inherited from their ancestors. But, there are signs you can watch out for. They include:
- Lethargy – If your dog is usually energetic but suddenly loses interest in playing then something is wrong.
- Poor appetite – Dogs love their food and treats. So, if you notice that your dog isn’t getting excited at mealtimes or if they are ignoring their treats it’s a sign they are hurting.
- Change in mannerism – Say your dog loved meeting new people and getting petted. And then all of a sudden, he acts defensively and doesn’t want to be touched. That could mean he is in pain.
- Focusing attention on a particular body part – Sometimes when pups are in pain they will excessively lick the specific part that is hurting. And it doesn’t have to be an open wound or anything visible. The pain could be internal. Also, if you notice that your dog is favoring one leg over the other it’s a sign that the leg is hurting.
- Eyes look different – Look out for bloodshot eyes and dilated or constricted eyes. You may also notice your dog wince when an area that is in pain is touched.
- Trouble breathing – Some signs to watch out for include fast shallow breaths accompanied by heavy panting.
- Body language – If your dog is arching their spine it could be because they are having back pains. Pay attention if you notice your dog unnaturally positioning their body.
Please speak to your vet immediately if you notice any of these symptoms.