Sweet Relief – Is Your Cat in Pain?

By January 26, 2018Uncategorized

Most of you will have heard the saying “cats are masters of disguise” – it is true.  As a species they are not just hunters but also hunted – that means that displaying any signs of weakness (including pain) in the wild will dramatically decrease their chances of survival. 

Meet the Atlantic Cat Hospital’s very own Duck – our Office Manager and Head Receptionist.  Duck came to the cat hospital as a young cat with a fractured pelvis in 2009.  She recovered from her injuries and did well maintained on glucosamine supplements.  Duck has always enjoyed a game of chase/toss but these were usually limited in duration and frequency.  After a week on pain medication (gabapentin) she really has her “game on” – is far more involved, insistent and interactive with everoyne at the cat hospital, demanding more play time throughout the day versus the odd session.(photo coming soon…)

When Yoda came to me he had a number of ‘bad teeth’ in his mouth.  There were no outward signs that anything was amiss.  Prior to his dental surgery he was a happy cat and engaged in short periods of play each day, including his favourite “fetch the crinkle ball”.  Following dental surgery and removal of the problem teeth his play periods have increased dramatically in both frequency and duration.  It is obvious that while he was ‘happy’ before, he is much happier now that those issues and the associated discomfort have been dealt with. (photo coming soon…)

There are several categories of pain:  Acute, Chronic and Persistant. 

Acute is immediate or sudden onset of pain usually associated with an injury, surgery, etc

Chronic is longterm pain that is often associated with arthritis, dental disease, etc. 

Persistant may relate to an ongoing illness (such as cancer) that must be treated palliatively. 

If acute pain is unmanaged it can become ‘chronic’ pain which can involve another set of challenges in treatment affecting the choice of pain medication or combinations of medication (mulit-modal) chosen to treat.    Multi-modal therapy will target different areas of the pain pathway to enhance relief. 

Common pain medications used include: buprenorphine, gabapentin and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories.  Additional classes of pain medication may be used for in hospital patients.

Your veterinarian will discuss with you to determine the best options for your cat if needed. 

For more information visit:  https://catfriendly.com/feline-diseases/signs-symptoms/know-cat-pain/


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