Updated: Dec 7, 2020
I want to tell you about my senior girl, Eve. She is the happiest, most joyful gal I've ever met. Her motto is "Puppy for life, never grow up!" She never complains, just enjoys life and doesn't make a fuss. But she's 11 years old and so, naturally, life becomes a little achier, slower, and things just don't work like they used to. I noticed her occasionally licking her front legs, but aside from that minor sign, nothing else indicated anything out of the ordinary. She was still happy go lucky Eve.
And then I started learning about pain in dogs and how it's not as easy to spot, unless of course it's extreme pain.
Dogs experience pain much like we do, physically, mentally and emotionally, but the difference is that they can't tell us about it. And if you think about it, unless we're in extreme pain, we don't always have obvious physical signs either. But we can talk about it!
Researchers have discovered that most dogs are in some kind of pain, at all times, without their owners having any idea! When I found this out, I felt really, really bad that my dogs may be suffering and I wasn't doing anything about it!
If I didn't know that my dog was in pain, though, how was I supposed to help them?
So I decided to learn the subtle signs of pain in dogs and also how important it is to put your hands on your dog regularly to check for any super subtle signs of underlying pain.
There are actually several signs that are easy to notice once you learn about them, that can really help you stay on top of any pain that crops up for your pup. I've compiled those signs into a handy PDF file for you, so that you can easily learn what to look out for (or feel). You can download it here --> Pain checklist
Back to Eve. After I learned the signs of pain, I put my hands on her and, holy cow, was I surprised by what I found! Poor thing had loads of pain and I was completely blind to it! But now that I know what to look and feel for, I'm confident in knowing that she'll never have to suffer in silence again.
There's actually some pretty cool techniques you can use to work on your dog's muscles and fascia to release the pain on a regular basis, but that's for another article...or course! Wink wink.