Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
LBass

Assess pain

Recommended Posts

Spirit boarded for 3 days while we had new flooring installed in our house.  On the second morning at the kennel, they found him lying on the floor beside his bed, unable to get up.  They helped him up and got him pottied, fed, and settled.  I think  he slipped on slick flooring and then struggled to get up because of age-related frailty.  The vet who owns the boarding facility saw Spirit and called me, suggesting that he might need pain meds.  He was given Carprofen 50 mg twice a day for ~ 5 days.  He has been taking a joint supplement, Dasuquin, for some time but nothing for pain.  Now I'm wondering whether or not Spirit needs pain meds, as this vet is suggesting.  My question here is: In the absence of yelping, whining, limping, or any screamingly obvious indicator of pain, what are some of the more subtle signs, symptoms and evidences I can look for to try to assess his level of pain? 

Background: Spirit is 13 years and 7 months old.  In the last year he's been losing muscle mass in his hind end and is a bit wobbly walking now. He is really quite healthy otherwise.  His 6 month physical was about 3 weeks ago. He's never been a stoic dog--anything that happens that he doesn't like or that scares him results in full a throated GSOD.  He's had no physical injuries in the past so I'm not sure of his reaction to physical pain but I'd expect him to let me know if he hurt.   He's got a vet appointment in a week and a half with his regular vet and I'd like to bring some rational, observation based sense of whether he's uncomfortable to that appointment.

TIA, Lucy


gallery_2398_3082_9958.jpg
Lucy with MoMo (FTH Chyna Moon), Spirit, and Miles the slinky kitty (OSH).
Missing Piper "The Perfect" (Oneco Chaplin) and Winston

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Panting (other than heat related), inability to settle down, change of walking pace, dragging feet, are signs I've seen in my own dogs.


Me & John Reese (Gable Dodge x O Jays) and the 4 kittehs!

36938152140_1a2fd29a1f.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When Sam was 13, he had a night where he'd had his usual pain meds but still panted and didn't sleep all night. That was it for us because we were already at the limit of what meds could do, so I sat up with him all night and told him he wouldn't have to do that again.


15060353021_97558ce7da.jpg
Kathy and Q (CRT Qadeer from Fuzzy's Cannon and CRT Bonnie) and
Jane (WW's Aunt Jane from Trent Lee and Aunt M); photos to come.

Missing Silver (5.19.2005-10.27.2016), Tigger (4.5.2007-3.18.2016),
darling Sam (5.10.2000-8.8.2013), Jacey-Kasey (5.19.2003-8.22.2011), and Oreo (1997-3.30.2006)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As said, panting, difficulty settling, just looking uncomfortable when he moves/walks. It can be very subtle, and especially with older dogs it can be a gradual increase. I’ve also found that while they may give the GSOD over a blade of grass stuck between their toes (yes, really :rolleyes:) this kind of pain, maybe because it increases gradually, doesn’t get an obvious reaction.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Panting, not settling, can’t get comfortable, yes. Something else I’ve noticed with my seniors is them acknowledging me but looking either sideways or beyond me - not looking at me as would be per normal. 

:grouphug


Old Dogs are the Best Dogs. :heartThank you, campers. Current enrollees: Aiden. Bea. Punkin. Annie. Miss M. Cletus, knot like the others.

Angels: Pal :heart. Segugio. Sorella (TPGIT). LadyBug. Zeke-aroni. MiMi Sizzle Pants. Gracie. Seamie :heart:brokenheart. (Foster)Sweet. Andy. PaddyALVIN!Mayhem. Bosco. Bruno.Dottie B. Trevor Double-Heart. Bea.

 

:paw Upon reflection, our lives are often referenced in parts defined by the all-too-short lives of our dogs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

These dogs are very stoic.  It certainly is not going to hurt to put him on 'something'...Metacam / Gabapentin.  I have never worried about  'long-term side effects' when medicating senior dogs for pain and thankfully my Vet agrees. 

I am also a strong  'better a day too early than a minute too late'   believer.   Thankfully all my dogs have told me when it was time.

Nigel -  turned 12 on June 2 - has had an increasingly wonky hind end for a while.   He never verbally complains either, but was struggling to get comfy laying down.   He can still  - cautiously - do stairs and jump on furniture. He was getting regular chiro/accupuncture until the C19 arrived.  His last treatment was 6 weeks ago and at that time our wonderful Vet recommended we start him on daily Metacam and the 'laying-down routine' has gotten noticeably better.   

Then last week, he got bumped by one of the other dogs, slipped, fell and could not get up.  Of course it was on the only small non-carpeted area of the mud room.  Sigh.  Thankfully I was right there and got him up, but he was visibly shaken. Poor boy trembled for quite a while.  He wore a RuffWear Web Master harness for the next 24 hours until I was sure he was OK.

He goes to the Vet next week and I'll text her over the weekend to give her an update before she sees him.   I am also suspicious that he has LP  so we need to chat about that too.

Hugs to Spirit.... Getting old is not for sissies.....


NSK-Winter.jpg.a6ea578c2e544932c5222b81cda3216d.jpg

Nancy...Mom to Nigel (Nigel) , Sid (Peteles Tiger) and Kibo (112 Carlota Galgos)Missing Casey, Gomer, Mona, Penelope, BillieJean, Bandit, Nixon (Starz Sammie) and especially Ruby (Watch Me Dash) waiting at the Bridge.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rethink the situation before making any changes. It sounds like they don't have staff overnight at the boarding facility which means that Spirit may have fallen early in the evening and struggled for awhile to get up until the staff came in the morning.  It would be nice if they gave you more information about the position Spirit was found in (his back legs splayed out and not able to get traction or the front not able to lift).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, MaryJane said:

Rethink the situation before making any changes. It sounds like they don't have staff overnight at the boarding facility which means that Spirit may have fallen early in the evening and struggled for awhile to get up until the staff came in the morning.  It would be nice if they gave you more information about the position Spirit was found in (his back legs splayed out and not able to get traction or the front not able to lift).

Agreed...awful to think this 13 year old dog may have been struggling.  Regarding pain...I would put this dog on galliprant ( considered one of the “safer” nsaids)....at 13 one must assume this dog is most certainly dealing with arthritis. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you all for this good thoughts for Spirit and the helpful info.  This is exactly what I need to help me watch and asses over the next few days.

 


gallery_2398_3082_9958.jpg
Lucy with MoMo (FTH Chyna Moon), Spirit, and Miles the slinky kitty (OSH).
Missing Piper "The Perfect" (Oneco Chaplin) and Winston

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sweet Spirit, your friends down here on the coast are sending all their good energy your way. :kiss2


Me & John Reese (Gable Dodge x O Jays) and the 4 kittehs!

36938152140_1a2fd29a1f.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

:beatheart  Spirit!!  :beatheart 

In addition to what everyone has said above, often they will have an increased heart rate with pain.  Check it when he's laying down and relaxed.  This is a physical symptom I try and keep track of throughout their lifetimes, so I know what a normal rate for a particular dog is, and when it's elevated.

I'd second the Galliprant, as it seems to be much easier on stomachs than other nsaids.  Just always give it on a full stomach right after eating.  A low dose of Gabapentin might also be in order.  If that duo doesn't aleviate his symptoms, a true pain reliever like codiene sulfate (NOT Tramadol) would be worth trying.

Getting old sucks.  Watching our sweet hounds get old is even harder.  {{{hugs}}}


Chris - Mom to: Lilly, Felicity (DeLand), and Andi (Braska Pandora)

35764734494_93de5b5963_b.jpg

Angels: Libby (Everlast), Dorie (Dog Gone Holly), Dude (TNJ VooDoo), Copper (Kid's Copper), Cash (GSI Payncash), Toni (LPH Cry Baby), Whiskey (KT's Phys Ed), Atom

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'll third the Galliprant. Sweep has done well on Previcox for many years, but since she's approaching 11, I wanted something gentler and Tracy (tbhounds) recommended it. Sweep made the switch after a washout period with no issues and it seems to be just as effective at keeping her limp at bay.

Best thoughts for Spirit and :grouphug to you!


17369590311_3d5eeef92f.jpg

Rachel with Sweep and kitties Olive and Momo.
Always missing my boys Mud and
Henry

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Eye candy, since no post is complete without a photo:

116435688_10213720740532073_703932467171888813_n.jpg?_nc_cat=100&_nc_sid=730e14&_nc_ohc=SY4AIL_lAOkAX_fJGSX&_nc_ht=scontent.fcae1-1.fna&oh=14dc2fe774ae36e98a02a001b9ad547e&oe=5F474CCA


gallery_2398_3082_9958.jpg
Lucy with MoMo (FTH Chyna Moon), Spirit, and Miles the slinky kitty (OSH).
Missing Piper "The Perfect" (Oneco Chaplin) and Winston

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

:beatheart :beatheart 

Conner was on Galliprant for about 6 months, it seemed to work and he didn’t have any issues with it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, LBass said:

Eye candy, since no post is complete without a photo:

116435688_10213720740532073_703932467171888813_n.jpg?_nc_cat=100&_nc_sid=730e14&_nc_ohc=SY4AIL_lAOkAX_fJGSX&_nc_ht=scontent.fcae1-1.fna&oh=14dc2fe774ae36e98a02a001b9ad547e&oe=5F474CCA

13? No way. Just incredibly senior handsome :beatheart :beatheart 


Old Dogs are the Best Dogs. :heartThank you, campers. Current enrollees: Aiden. Bea. Punkin. Annie. Miss M. Cletus, knot like the others.

Angels: Pal :heart. Segugio. Sorella (TPGIT). LadyBug. Zeke-aroni. MiMi Sizzle Pants. Gracie. Seamie :heart:brokenheart. (Foster)Sweet. Andy. PaddyALVIN!Mayhem. Bosco. Bruno.Dottie B. Trevor Double-Heart. Bea.

 

:paw Upon reflection, our lives are often referenced in parts defined by the all-too-short lives of our dogs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, that's some of the new flooring and one of the many runners I've got out for Spirit and Nate. :lol   Spirit really is a sweetheart.  He started off as a dog who was so afraid of anything and anyone.  He's still not wild about meeting new people, but he's bloomed so beautifully at home and has gradually expanded his world of acceptable humans.  Once you're "in" with him, he can't get enough attention and petting.  He has also gotten amusingly demanding as he has matured, which seems to me to be a kind of confidence in his humans.  He loves ice cubes and generally comes into the kitchen for his cubes if he hears the ice maker.  If he doesn't appear in the kitchen, then cubes are delivered to him in bed. He demands his evening Greenie and I'd better get a move on.  Nate eats in his crate and Spirit goes in to check on his "brother" about halfway through every meal.  Hum, I wonder if he'd like his food bowl next to Nate's crate?  I'd better try that this evening.  


gallery_2398_3082_9958.jpg
Lucy with MoMo (FTH Chyna Moon), Spirit, and Miles the slinky kitty (OSH).
Missing Piper "The Perfect" (Oneco Chaplin) and Winston

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've met and been accepted by Spirit, he is such a sweetie, even if he is Chicken Little sometimes. :D He has become a good big brother, too.


Me & John Reese (Gable Dodge x O Jays) and the 4 kittehs!

36938152140_1a2fd29a1f.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
41 minutes ago, LBass said:

Yes, that's some of the new flooring and one of the many runners I've got out for Spirit and Nate. :lol   Spirit really is a sweetheart.  He started off as a dog who was so afraid of anything and anyone.  He's still not wild about meeting new people, but he's bloomed so beautifully at home and has gradually expanded his world of acceptable humans.  Once you're "in" with him, he can't get enough attention and petting.  He has also gotten amusingly demanding as he has matured, which seems to me to be a kind of confidence in his humans.  He loves ice cubes and generally comes into the kitchen for his cubes if he hears the ice maker.  If he doesn't appear in the kitchen, then cubes are delivered to him in bed. He demands his evening Greenie and I'd better get a move on.  Nate eats in his crate and Spirit goes in to check on his "brother" about halfway through every meal.  Hum, I wonder if he'd like his food bowl next to Nate's crate?  I'd better try that this evening.  

You know what messing with routine can do! I am not saying don’t move his dish, just be prepared in case he objects :lol

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You're likely right.  Any change ot routine is likely to throw him for a loop.  I'l leave well enough alone!


gallery_2398_3082_9958.jpg
Lucy with MoMo (FTH Chyna Moon), Spirit, and Miles the slinky kitty (OSH).
Missing Piper "The Perfect" (Oneco Chaplin) and Winston

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...