Rescue Journal

recognizing pain

Carol  ·  Aug. 12, 2008

i said earlier that animals display many of the same signs of pain that we do...but they have their own unique ways too.

the obvious

stiffness or soreness or reluctance to get up, sit down, lay down or move around.

whining, yelping or crying

loss of appetite

increased sleeping

decreased sleeping, inability to settle with alot of pacing.


loss of interest or interaction with their surroundings.

the subtle

increased neediness

increasing confusion or dementia

night time yowling

night time restlessness

night time pacing

standing in corners and staring off into space.

vorocious appetites, devouring everything and anything including things not meant to be eaten.

sudden unexplained biting, snarling, growling, snapping.

repeated and continuous needy type behaviors like seeking reassurence and touching.
sudden onset separation anxiety

falling, tripping, getting stuck in odd places

increased and obsessive thirst

destructive behavior

self mutilation

running away



darting around and acting afraid.

there are probably a whole bunch i am missing cuz my brain is foggy, i just woke up from a power nap.

news from today

it is now official, lady has been formally adopted by laura and lana. yay lady!!!!
nola is moving into permanent foster care around the beginning of sept with dawn. yay nola!!!!
the vet came out and watched spritely RUN AWAY FROM ME IN VERY HIGH SPEED. he said..."wow, i cannot believe she can move around that well"

anyway he doesn't know what the clear glue-like crud copiously oozing from her anterior lower leg is but said to keep on with the injectible abx's, the hosings and washing it with iodine. he did say her foot is not falling off and he is actually astounded that it hasn't yet so that is very good news. yay spritely!!!!

percy tried to intentionally kick me while the vet was here...the vet said he is way too friendly and full of himself and was i honestly going to keep the young spoiled rotten little beast for the next 20 years? bad percy!!!!
i talked to him about rusty the rooster and he couldn't offer any other suggestions than what we are already doing but he seemed to think it was possibly really old age too. he was going to go home and ask his wife the former chicken now cat vet and see if she could suggest anything else.
tammy and i did 2 huge dump runs in the past couple of days and we picked up some more plastic shelving units in anticipation of moving the storage into the shop. yay, soon to be moving stuff into there!!!

time to put the barn guys to bed and wash down spritely's not so sore leg.



An addition to the 'obvious' for cats - inappropriate urination! If they think the litterbox is causing them pain, they keep trying to find a place to pee that doesn't hurt them. (Bladder issues, as everyone probably already knows.)

And a silly story - my dog ("The Destructor") has eaten absolutely every inedible thing imaginable in his lifetime. Awhile back he stopped eating - 2 days no food, a day no pooping. Walking around hunched up like he has to poop but doesn't. I assume he's eaten a catnip toy, as he'd been chasing them lately, and has blocked himself up. Go to the vet and insist on xrays. After hearing that he's thirteen, she says not likely - he's well past the age of destruction. I tell her that he's eaten two shoes and a chair cushion in the past month. He gets full body xrays, and is completely empty except for gas.
She starts to palpate his spine, he cries Really Loudly, and she gives me pred for a disc issue. We get home, I hold his food bowl up at nose level (he's a tall dog), and he scarfs his food up like ... well, like a dog that hasn't eaten in two days. I felt terrible. He was starving because it hurt him to reach his head down to the food bowl, and I was assuming (because of his history) that he'd eaten a stuffed toy. This was before the Great Poisoned Food thing last year, otherwise I'd have probably assumed he wasn't eating because it was full of Melamine.
A long-winded way of saying, "any" unusual behavior can be a symptom of pain, really, and I've finally learned to mash on anyone that's acting strangely to see if they're sensitive anywhere.