Do You Know How to Manage Your K9 Partner’s Pain?
Whether your partner has just experienced on-the-job major trauma such as a gunshot wound, a moderate injury such as a hard landing onto concrete, or is sore from yesterdays rocky terrain search, it’s essential to have safe and effective options to treat your K9’s pain. Not only is it compassionate to relieve your K9’s suffering, but it is also improves your safety (since you are less likely to be bit), and has also been shown to improve recovery (in humans and likely in K9s). In order to be most effective, the pain medications should be administered as quickly as possible after trauma to best interrupt the pain cascade. So what’s a Handler to do?
Which Pain Medication is best for your Partner?
Take our quick Myth Busting Quiz to Find out!
True or False: Aspirin is always safe and effective for my K9.
False: Aspirin requires Veterinary consultation. A single dose could cause some gastric bleeding and other NSAIDS may need to be avoided for a period of time called a “washout” period. If you DO use it, you need to notify your veterinarian so they can adjust their treatments accordingly. Plus, it can never be used for major trauma. If administered to K9 in hypovolemic shock, i.e. just lost a lot of blood, it could cause acute renal failure.
Unfortunately, Aspirin is still put in many K9/Pet First Aid Kits and recommended on websites. This can cause a lot of harm, and our K9 MEDIC Veterinary Team has been in the unfortunate situation of having to treat dogs because there were given aspirin in pet first aid kits by very well meaning owners.
True or False: Ibuprofen (Motrin/Advil) or Naproxen (Aleve) is a great pain killer for my K9.
False: Ibuprofen is even more dangerous than Aspirin. In addition to gastric risks, these drugs have high risk of toxicity with regards to both dosage and half lives (how long they stay in the system). They can be fatal. Don’t use them. Fortunately, it’s generally well known that these products are dangerous for K9s.
True or False: Since my Veterinarian has provided a K9 Prescription for Pain, I know it safe to use on other team K9s.
False: Every dog is different. My K9 Shadow couldn’t take Tramadol (he would try to stand up for about 24 hrs straight, fall asleep standing, then wake up and try to stand again). My K9 Angel had no problems with it. There is a reason a prescription is for a specific patient!
True or False: Every Handler NEEDS to have a conversation with their Veterinarian about prescribing pain meds for each of the K9s.
Ding, Ding, Ding! TRUE!!!: Understand that acute trauma pain is very different from ongoing chronic pain. Your first aid kit is for emergency trauma only. You will want to have a separate conversation if your Partner suffers from ongoing chronic pain, which can be addressed in many different ways which might include rehabilitation, laser therapy and/or medications.
#thedogISmyhomework Assignment: Enter to WIN a FREE T-SHIRT
Call TODAY and make an appointment to visit your Veterinarian. Explain your situation and talk about the different options that are best for the risk level that you face and the time delay you may encounter before arriving to a Veterinary Hospital. If you would like a template late from our Advisory Team to your Veterinarian to help facilitate the conversation, contact us here
Plus, we know that sometimes we need to motivate you, so we are including this assignment in our new #ClickTreat program. Post a picture of you and your K9 with their prescription and/or their Veterinarian with the following tags and we will consider your entry for a FREE K9 MEDIC T-SHIRT. #K9MEDIC #thedogISmyhomework #K9PainRX
… For Dog’s Sake!