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As a pet owner, you obviously want your dog to lead a happy and healthy life. However, that isn’t going to be completely possible. There are bound to be issues in a dog’s lifetime. He or she is going to get ill or injured and the only thing you can do is help the little one out.
Speaking of helping out, pain is obviously one of those things that you can’t see your dog in. But, like we said earlier, your dog is going to experience it at some point in time, especially as he/she gets older. Fortunately, there are solutions to help your dog deal with pain.
In fact, most of the pain medications available today for dogs are far more effective than they used to be.
Here are the various types of pain medication you can currently get your hands on.
NSAID refers to Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflamatory Drug. These are the most common type of pain medications for dogs. NSAIDs work by inhibiting the production of enzymes responsible for tissue swelling. Currently available NSAIDs are far safer than what they used to be. With these medications, helping your dog through the pain is a much easier task now. Plus, there are no major side effects.
Typical examples of NSAIDS are Rimadyl, Novox, Metacam and Previcox etc.
Nutraceuticals include nutrients such as MSM, Omega-3 Fatty acids, and Glucosamine. These are basically supplements used along with the prescribed pain medications. They help your dog deal with chronic pain, especially in the case of arthritis.
Opiates function by inhibiting the dog’s ability to sense pain. These medications are actually classified as narcotics and can be very strong, which is why they are prescribed only for severe pain.
Most veterinarians will choose NSAIDs over opiates any day, but, their use is still warranted in extreme cases. Opiates are also regulated by the D.E.A.
There is also the problem of side effects such as your dog developing a tolerance for this kind of pain medication.
Opiate examples include Morphine, Codeine, and Buprenorphine.
Alternative treatment here refers to the use of herbal medication or altering the dog’s environment to ease the sensation of pain.
For example, a lot of pet owners prefer to avoid medications altogether. In this case, they may choose “non-medication” strategies such as massaging the arthritic joints, creating a low stress environment by filtering out disturbances such as noise, and generally leaving the dog at peace to help the healing process.
Apart from altering the environment, herbal or natural treatments may be provided. For example, traditional Chinese veterinary medicine or acupuncture may be used. A lot of pet owners have reported positive results with such treatment.
However, do discuss with your vet about what pain treatment or medication may be suitable for your dog.