By Amy Caldwell
Published: 09/12/2017, edited: 08/10/2021
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There is nothing like consistent, debilitating pain to dampen your day. It leaves you feeling lethargic and uninterested in your usual daily activities. Fortunately, there is a range of easy-to-access painkillers that can limit your pain and allow you to go about your day. Advil (ibuprofen) is one such drug that is used all over the world for its pain-relieving effects. But what do you do when your dog is in pain? A host of human medicines can have very nasty adverse effects on dogs – some can even be fatally toxic. This article will establish whether it’s safe to give your dog Advil and what other pain relief options there are for your canine friend.
Advil: Yes or No for Dogs?
Advil works by inhibiting cyclooxygenase, an enzyme that produces prostaglandins, which encourages pain and inflammation. However, prostaglandins also play a significant part in other important canine functions. It ensures blood flow to the kidneys and helps prevent blood clots. If you give your dog Advil, these capabilities will be impaired and your dog could suffer unpleasant effects. They can often throw up and excrete blood, their kidneys and liver can fail, and without treatment, they could even die.
So if you’re thinking of giving your dog Advil… don’t! Instead, consult your local vet and explore some of the other, safer pain relief options available.
How To Go About Getting The Right Pain Relief for Your Dog
If you’re worried your dog is in considerable pain and want to ensure they get effective relief, then the first place you need to go is your local vet. Human medication, for the most part, is simply not safe for canine consumption. However, recent decades have seen a surge in scientific research into the problem. This has led to the crucial development of a scale to evaluate pain in dogs, documented in 1999 by the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association.
This research has led to a number of safe and effective pain relief drugs being developed. Popular canine pain relief medications are carprofen, deracoxib, etodolac, and meloxicam. They can be used for a range of problems, from arthritis to ear infections and all can be accessed via your local vet.
Alternative Pain Relief Options for Dogs
If you don’t want to go down the drug route, there are other ways to help relieve your dog’s pain. One straightforward alteration is to their diet. Adding omega-3 fatty acids to their diet can reduce inflammation and pain. A 2015 article from Philip C. Calder looked in-depth at the effects of omega-3 and highlighted its potential benefits. This is a quick, safe and readily accessible food supplement you can utilize.
It is also worth ensuring your dog is not overweight. Extra weight will put stress on the heart and all of the limbs and organs. Regular exercise and a balanced diet of raw, lean meats, fresh fruit and vegetables, and steering clear of starchy foods, may help your dog lose weight, reducing strain and decreasing pain.
Of course, there are times when medication is the only answer. Discuss the above options with your dog's vet to ensure they are getting the pain relief they need to be comfortable.
Seek Your Vet's Advice
Pain can leave your dog feeling lethargic, miserable and seriously dampen their quality of life. Human medications like Advil, however, can be seriously damaging to your dog’s internal organs and should be avoided. Instead, seek advice from your vet about the canine-specific medications mentioned above. In addition, alterations to your dog’s diet and adding supplements such as omega-3 fatty acids may naturally help relieve your dog’s pain.
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