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Signs Of Pain In Pets

September 15, 2023

It’s Animal Pain Awareness Month! We can’t overstate the importance of this topic. Our animal companions are susceptible to many of the same painful health issues as people can, but they can’t tell us what’s wrong or make themselves appointments. It’s important to know what to look for. A Middletown, DE vet lists some of the main ones in this article.


There are a few red flags that apply to most, if not all, of our furry companions. Limping, for example, is an obvious sign that something is wrong. Other red flags include vomiting; diarrhea; stumbling; trembling; reduced appetite; visible lumps, lesions, or wounds; fever; skin problems; respiratory issues; heavy/unusual discharge; and unusual posture, stride, or vocalizations. Changes in the color, texture, smell, or volume of your pet’s waste are also an indication that something is amiss. Do some research that is specific to your type of pet, and ask your vet for more information. 


Dogs that don’t feel well often act restless or lethargic. Fido may lick or nibble at a sore spot, such as his leg, paw, or the base of his tail. He may pant heavily, lose interest in play, and may growl, whimper, whine, or bark incessantly. He may also seem to have trouble getting comfortable.


Unkempt fur is one of the telltail signs that something is wrong with a cat. Kitties are very clean, and usually spend a pretty good chunk of their waking time grooming themselves. If Fluffy doesn’t feel well, she’ll abandon her usual beauty routine, and her coat will soon show the difference. Yowling, withdrawal, and uncharacteristic aggression are also indications that something is off.

Pocket Pets

Smaller pets may become lethargic if they don’t feel well. Bunnies may grind their teeth or vocalize in an unusual manner.


If Polly doesn’t feel well, she may hold her wings out for long times, sitting listlessly on her perch or her cage floor, changes in vocalizations, and broken or stained feathers. Any kind of swelling, redness, or discoloration on her feet or cere could also be a warning sign.

Reptiles and Exotics

Snakes and lizards may sit in strange positions, or stargaze. You’ll also want to watch for unshed skin and discharge from the eye, nose, or mouth, and small, coffee-like specks, which would signify mites.

If you see any of these warnings, please contact us right away. As your local Middletown, DE pet clinic, we’re here to help!

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