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Signs Your Dog is in Pain

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No one wants to see their dog in pain. While an obvious limp, wound, or cut are easy to identify, other causes can be harder to spot. Your pet cannot tell you what they’re feeling, making it extremely difficult to know if and when your dog is in pain. Some dogs will even attempt to hide pain as part of their natural survival instinct. It’s important to learn the signs of a potential problem. This way you can spot and treat the cause of pain before it gets worse.

Changes in Behavior

Any changes in your dog’s normal behavior warrant a trip to the vet. Even if the change is minor or seems insignificant, it’s important to address the issue immediately. Certain problems can escalate quickly, increasing your dog’s discomfort and reducing the chance of effective treatment.


Dogs communicate through barking, growling, and whimpering. A dog that suddenly starts whimpering is trying to let you know that something is wrong. While whimpering may indicate frustration or other emotions, it can also let you know when your dog is experiencing pain.

Pay close attention to your dog’s behavior. Whimpering when you touch certain areas of their body or while walking or laying down is a clear sign that something isn’t right. Common causes include osteoarthritis and elbow dysplasia. A trip to your vet can help determine the cause.


Limping is one of the most obvious signs of a problem. Pets limp for many reasons including injury, irritation to the paw, and osteoarthritis. Older pets and certain breeds experiencing problems getting up, moving, and traveling upstairs likely suffer from osteoarthritis. Your veterinarian can help you determine the cause and provide ways to ease the pain. DogLeggs® provides several products designed to provide comfort and support to dogs suffering from osteoarthritis and other conditions that can cause pain and limping.


When in pain, dogs may pant excessively. If you notice your dog panting at night, while resting, and/or in an air conditioned room, it’s time to see your vet. In addition to panting, dogs may tremble or experience other changes to their respiratory rate.

Temperament Changes

Dogs can become aggressive or moody when in pain. See your vet if your dog suddenly starts growling or attempts to bite when touched. Sometimes you’ll notice this occurs only when you touch certain areas. This can help you pinpoint the origin of the pain. Other common changes in behavior include a pet that suddenly becomes withdrawn or demands more attention. As mentioned above, any changes in normal behavior could indicate a problem.

Final Thoughts

Many pet parents find it distressing when their dog experiences pain. However, you should never attempt to give your dog human medications as they can cause a potentially hazardous situation for your pet. It’s important to talk to your veterinarian at the first sign of a problem. This ensures proper diagnosis and treatment.

DogLeggs® provides products specially designed for the support and treatment of painful conditions. Please contact us for more information about our products.