Pain Inflammation in Pets

Pain Inflammation in Pets

PHC LLCSep 24, '19

What is pain inflammation in dogs?

Pain inflammation is a complex biological response of the dog’s body tissues to certain harmful stimuli, like pathogens, irritants, and damaged cells. It is also considered your dog’s protective response for repairing the body, which involves the dog’s blood vessels, immune cells, and molecular mediators.

Pain inflammation happens when white blood cells and plasma are brought to the affected area of the dog’s body to fight infection. Aside from that, this process also initiates tissue repair and eliminates dead cells. 

There is pain because the increased blood flow causes swelling and redness to the affected area. 

Different Types of Pain inflammation

Acute pain inflammation

This type of inflammation is one that starts rapidly and becomes severe in a short amount of time.  The symptoms of acute pain inflammation are usually present for a few days but can persist for a few weeks.

Conditions that may cause acute pain inflammation include acute bronchitis, a scratch or cut on the skin, and intense exercise. 

Chronic pain inflammation

This type of inflammation is caused by pathogens that the dog’s body cannot breakdown. These pathogens include certain types of viruses such as parvovirus and coronavirus. Foreign bodies that remain in the dog’s system can also cause inflammation. 

The onset of chronic pain inflammation is slow and the duration can be from months to years. Chronic pain inflammation can predispose the dog to certain diseases.  This includes certain types of cancer. 

Rheumatoid arthritis and asthma are some conditions that can include chronic pain inflammation.

The following are some pain inflammation conditions for dogs:

Vertebral Disc Inflammation

Vertebral disc inflammation is also known as discospondylitis. This is due to an infection caused by fungus or bacteria. The infection reaches the intervertebral discs through the blood.

Larger dog breeds such as Great Danes and German Shepherds are at greater risks of developing this condition. Male dogs are also more prone to have discospondylitis than female dogs.

The symptoms of this condition include difficulty in standing or jumping, back pain, weakness in the limbs, fever, lameness, stiff gait, and uncoordinated walk. 


This is a condition where the joint becomes filled with inflammatory substances and extra cells. This causes stiffness and swelling around the area. 


Osteoarthritis is a condition wherein the cartilage in the dog’s joints is damaged. Trauma or mineral deficiency may cause this.

Inflammatory bowel disease

This is an inflammation of the intestinal lining or inflammation of the stomach. This inhibits the normal digestion of food. Inflammatory bowel disease can cause long-term diarrhea, abdominal pain, weight loss, and chronic vomiting. 

The underlying cause of this condition may be parasites, bacteria, food allergies, and genetics. 


This is a painful inflammation of the dog’s long bones. Panosteitis is mostly seen in puppies, 5 to 19 months of age.  Dogs that have this condition find it difficult to walk, run and play. 

This condition can be mild or severe. It can last from days to months. 


This condition is an inflammation of the lungs. The symptoms include difficulty breathing and wheezing.

How to prevent pain inflammation in dogs

Proper exercise, good nutrition, low stress can help prevent pain inflammation. Giving dogs vitamins and supplements with calcium and iron also helps prevent this condition. 

Using orthopedic dog beds will help. It is important that your dog has a comfortable area for sleeping and resting. 

In general, maintaining the dog’s healthy lifestyle helps reduce the risk of them having painful inflammation. 

Symptoms of pain inflammation in dogs

The common signs of pain inflammation in dogs include difficulty in walking or limping. 

The following are other symptoms of painful inflammation:

Loss of appetite

This is when dogs show disinterest in food, difficulty in eating, or having difficulty moving to where the food bowl is. 

This can also be a sign for serious illnesses such as dental disease or even cancer.


Panting is a normal dog behavior after an exercise. This is also normal to show tiredness. During hot days, dogs pant to cool themselves since they do not sweat. 

If the dog is panting heavily even if he has rested, this is most likely a sign of stress. In this situation, calm the dog and check for other signs of inflammation such as limping or loss of appetite. 


Sudden changes in the dog’s behavior including aggression can indicate pain inflammation. The dogs become aggressive, even to their owners if they feel threatened. If this happens, it is best to check if they incurred injuries.  Seeking immediate medical help is needed in this case.

Changes in sleeping patterns

The change in the dog’s sleeping habits can be due to the intensity of pain inflammation. The dog will either sleep longer to heal the pain or sleep less. 

Unexpected accidents in the house

If your dog is well- trained in the house and suddenly starts to defecate or urinate inside, this maybe a sign of pain inflammation. 

Being More Vocal

Dogs that are in pain or have inflammation are more vocal. They show excessive snarling, growling, howling and even yelping. 

How to treat pain inflammation

Pain inflammation can be treated through medications and natural remedies. In severe cases, a surgery may be needed to treat the inflammation.  

The common medication used to treat pain inflammation is NSAIDs. NSAID stands for Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. NSAID examples include meloxicam, Carprofen, Firoxcib, and Deracoxib. 

CBD oil or hemp oil supplements are also used to treat pain inflammation in dogs. This is a natural alternative to non-inflammatory drugs. 

Other natural treatments include:

Fish oil

This is a source of omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA. These fatty acids reduce inflammation and pain. Be sure to use fish body oils such as the salmon oil or EPA oil. 

It is best not to give fish liver oil. This oil has high levels of Vitamin D and A but low in omega-3 fatty acids. 


This is an enzyme found in pineapples that has strong anti-inflammatory properties. It is best to give this to the dog an hour or two after eating. This is so the dog will not vomit what he ate. 


This spice has anti-inflammatory properties. Ginger helps improve digestion and circulation. 

In severe cases, surgical procedures are mostly done to treat dogs with severe chronic pain inflammation.