Animal Pain Awareness

September is Animal Pain Awareness Month. This is one cause that is very important to us here at Kenhaven Animal Hospital. Your furry friend can’t tell you if something is bothering them, so it’s up to you to watch for warning signs that something is wrong. Here, a Rockville, MD veterinary clinic discusses some common signs of pain in pets.

Bone/Joint Issues

These issues are most common in older pets, but any of our animal friends can be afflicted. With these issues, you may notice things like limping, stiffness, lack of interest in play/exercise, a reluctance to jump or climb, trouble managing stairs, and, in Fido’s case, problems getting in and out of cars.

Tummy Issues

Digestive issues are no more fun for pets than they are for us. A lack of appetite is one thing to watch for here. Diarrhea, vomiting, constipation, and changes in the amount, color, or texture of your pet’s waste are also red flags. (It’s worth noting that these issues can be indicative of many types of illness.)


Ear problems can be both painful and dangerous for our furry pals! Your pet may shake his head, rub against things, paw at his ears, or tilt his head if his ears are hurting. You may also notice discharge, wax buildup, or foul odors.

Dental Trouble

If you’ve ever had a toothache, you know they aren’t much fun. Drooling and dribbling food are two common red flags. Your pet may also have visible tartar buildup or bleeding gums. Pets with dental trouble often chew on one side of their mouths, eat slowly, or prefer softer food. Bad breath is another common issue, though, as many other warning signs, this can actually be an indication of many different issues.


There are also some general warning signs to look for. Pets often withdraw when they don’t feel well. Your furry pal may not feel very playful, and/or may act a bit grouchy. Behavioral changes are also red flags. For instance, a cat that is usually quite vocal, but suddenly becomes quiet, may be ill. If you see any of the symptoms we’ve listed here, or anything else out of the ordinary, call your vet immediately. The sooner an issue is diagnosed and treated, the better!

Do you know or suspect that your pet isn’t feeling well? Contact us, your Rockville, MD vet clinic, today!

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