The month of September is Animal Pain Awareness Month.
Animals suffer from pain just like people do and it comes in many forms: surgical pain, arthritis and cancer related pain, just to name a few. Acute pain is obvious and distressing. Chronic pain can be subtle, and masked as “getting old” or “slowing down.” Old age is not a disease, but pain is. There are many options to treat the various causes of pain in animals including pain medications, if you suspect your cat or dog is experience pain schedule an exam with your veterinarian right away.
Pain management has been recognized as an essential component of compassionate care in canine and feline medicine—increasingly so over the last 20 years.
As all cat owners know, cats are not small dogs and when it comes to pain and pain management, this is certainly true. Cats are less likely to show outward signs of pain, especially when they are suffering from chronic pain. Similarly, dogs will instinctively hide their pain as a survival mechanism, which previously led well-meaning experts to presume that dogs did not feel pain the same way humans do.