What Can I Give My Dog For Pain

There is nothing worse than watching your dog experience daily aches and pain. We want to find any method to ease their discomfort, but what is actually safe for our pups when it comes to pain management? Though humans have many at home options for pain relief, it’s not as simple for our furry friends.

In this article we will help you understand what could be causing your dog pain, and introduce you to safe pain relief options for your pup.

What Are The Signs Of Pain In Dogs?

What Can I Give My Dog For Pain

So how do you know if your dog is in pain? Since our pups can’t tell us how they are currently feeling, we have to rely on changes in their daily habits to help us determine their comfort.

Some of the most common symptoms of pain in dogs include:

  • Panting
  • Whining
  • Change in posture
  • Shaking
  • Disinterest in activities they once enjoyed
  • Slow to get up and down
  • Slowing down in general
  • Limping or lameness
  • Stiffness
  • Loss of appetite
  • Licking or biting a certain area
  • Crying out
  • Vocalizing when certain areas are touched
  • Swelling

Since every dog is different, you can assume that any change in your dog’s behavior could possibly be pointing to pain. In order to be sure, it’s best to contact your vet at the first sign of any changes in your canine friend.

What Can Cause Pain In Dogs?

Similar to you and I, our dogs are not immune to daily aches and pain. Our dogs can experience sudden injuries or chronic pain that can cause them great discomfort.

Some of the most common causes of chronic and acute pain in dogs include:

Chronic Pain

  • Joint pain & arthritis
  • Dental disease
  • Chronic ear infections
  • Painful cancers

Acute Pain

  • IVDD (intervertebral disc disease)
  • Pancreatitis
  • Cystitis or urinary tract infections
  • Sudden injury

While these are the most common causes of pain in dogs, there are many other factors that can lead to your dog’s discomfort. By being aware of the symptoms of pain in dogs, you can catch on to their discomfort through the clues in their behavior. Though we are going to discuss pain relief options for dogs, we recommend you contacting your vet at any sign of pain in your furry friend, as acute causes of pain can be a medical emergency.

Dangers Of Over The Counter Pain Medications For Dogs

Whenever we think our pups are experiencing pain, we may feel tempted to reach in our own medicine cabinets and offer them some of the human pain relief that we take. Though we don’t mean our pets harm by doing this, these over the counter medications can threaten our dog’s health in major ways.

Some of the most common forms of pain medication, such as Tylenol or Advil, can be deadly for our furry friends. Acetaminophen can cause liver failure in dogs, while Ibuprofen and aspirin can cause severe gastrointestinal ulceration and bleeding. Though some companies will make low doses of these medications and claim that they are safe for our furry friends, it’s important to never offer any of these options without the direct advice of a veterinarian.

If your dog has consumed any of the above medication, it’s best to contact your vet immediately for further care. It is also important to mention the use of any of these medications to your veterinarian, as it can be dangerous to start other prescribed medications with these substances in their system. 

Safe Pain Relief Options For Dogs

Now that we have discussed the dangers of over the counter pain relief for our dogs, it’s time to dive into the safe pain relief options that are available for our pups. Each of the options listed below can offer your pup some much needed relief, all without threatening their health.

It’s important to discuss each pain relief option with your vet before offering them to your dog, as they may recommend a better option for your dog’s specific situation.

Omega Fatty Acids

Omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids are a group of nutritional fats that promote immune health and reduce inflammation in dogs. Since most chronic pain is a result of an inflammatory process in our pups, these fatty acids can target the inflammation and make a huge difference when used daily. Omega fatty acids are ideal in dogs that struggle with joint pain, as well as those that suffer from chronic allergies.

Glucosamine & Chondroitin

Combining glucosamine and chondroitin is an incredible way to help dogs that suffer from chronic pain. While glucosamine contributes to maintaining the strength and elasticity of connective tissue, chondroitin can provide strength to the cartilage in joints. Because of this, glucosamine and chondroitin are wonderful additions to the lives of dogs that experience chronic joint pain.

Joint Supplements

These are extremely beneficial in either preventing joint pain or offering relief to dogs that already struggle with joint pain. Joint supplements combine multiple anti-inflammatory agents and ingredients known to restore the strength of their joints. By offering supplements daily, your aging pup can find the extra comfort they deserve. Our favorite veterinary approved joint supplement for dogs is Cosequin.


While there are not many studies that have been performed for the use of CBD in dogs, many vets are beginning to recommend CBD oil and CBD products for dogs with chronic pain. CBD not only helps to relieve pain in dogs, but can also be used in dogs that struggle with forms of anxiety. If you think your dog is in pain, it’s worth talking to your vet about their opinion of CBD.


Acupuncture is gaining massive popularity in the canine health world. With acupuncture promoting healing and the release of pain relieving substances within the body, this type of therapy can offer incredible benefits to dogs that suffer from chronic pain.

Prescribed Pain Medication

So what pain medications are actually safe for dogs? Though over the counter medications for humans are not approved for pups, there are quite a few prescription options that our veterinarian can offer. Some of the most common prescribed pain relief for dogs are:

  • Carprofen
  • Meloxicam
  • Galliprant
  • Tramadol
  • Gabapentin

My Dog Is Dying, What Can I Give Him For Pain?

Unfortunately, there are no other ways to make a passing dog more comfortable than the assistance of euthanasia. Over the counter medications can still cause a passing dog discomfort, and you would never want your dog to experience even more discomfort than necessary. If you are wanting to be by your dogs side in the comfort of your home, you can always seek out the help of an at home euthanasia service. Most cities have this option, and are always ready to come to your painful dog’s aid.

We hate to see our beloved pets in pain, making it so important to be aware of safe pain relief options for the dog in your life. Be sure to review the information we discussed above, and your dog will be pain free in no time!

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