What Can You Give a Dog for Pain?

It can be a sad and upsetting experience when your dog is suffering from pain. Oftentimes when your dog experiences pain it can make you feel quite helpless.

What is more, deciding on how to help your pet can be challenging as well as daunting. However, there are many ways to help ease your dog’s pain.


NSDAIDs or Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs are often used for your dog’s pain when they have joint pain, swelling, stiffness, surgery pain or arthritis. However, some NSAIDs can cause side-effects with certain breeds such as vomiting, loss of appetite, redness of the skin, diarrhea or tarry stools and changes in behavior.

You should also avoid giving your dog NSDAIDs that has been prescribed for humans. According to WebMD, there are actually Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs that are specifically made for dogs such as:

  • Firocoxib (Previcox)
  • Meloxicam (Metacam)
  • Deracoxib (Deramaxx)
  • Carprofen (Novox or Rimadyl)

In addition, always give your pet the prescribed amount. Likewise, be careful not to give your dog too much because it can cause an overdose. Equally, never hesitate to take your dog to the veterinarian if you notice any side effects.


Aspirin is actually a type of NSDAID. Although NSAIDs such as aspirin, naproxen (Aleve) and ibuprofen (Advil and Motrin) are effective for humans, they are not good pain relievers for dogs.

In fact, even a small dose can be toxic. A prescription from your vet is always advised. Side effects include gastric ulcers, gastrointestinal irritation and hemorrhage, hepatic problems, anemia and renal failure.

Significant factors to know when giving your dog aspirin:

  • Never give aspirin on a continual basis
  • Always consult your vet before administering
  • Use only for short period of time for minor pains only, not for chronic pain


Out of habit, many people reach for Tylenol when they are in pain. Unfortunately, Tylenol should not be used as a pain medication for dogs. However, Tylenol is sometimes administered to dogs under a veterinarian’s supervision.

Like aspirin, small doses of Tylenol can be toxic for dogs as well as cats. Overdose may cause liver damage and potentially destroy red blood cells. Additionally, cats have been known to die from small doses of Tylenol.

Prescription Medications

According to Top Dog Tips, there are times when NSAIDs doesn’t work for your dog’s pain. Sometimes the pain is caused from a condition that is far more serious and regular meds do not help the pain whatsoever. Instead of administering an NSAID, your vet may recommend a prescription medication. There are numerous prescription medications for your dog such as:


this anti-Parkinson’s medication for humans also helps dogs with serious conditions like degenerative arthritis, cancer and disk disease. Amantadine side effects are minimal which include agitation and diarrhea.


or Neurontin, is a neuralgia and anti-seizure med for humans. It also helps relieve pain caused by nerve damage. Gabapentin should only be administered to your dog under strict monitoring from your veterinarian. Side effects include drowsiness but symptoms may dissipate once your dog adapts to the medication.


this medication is a type of opiate making it a very potent painkiller. It is often used for dogs suffering from cancer, lameness, Osteoarthritis, pain after surgery, nonsurgical intervertebral disc disease and overall pain from an injury or other conditions.

Further, the side effects can be just as strong as the medication. According to the American Kennel Club, side effects may include:

  • Anxiety
  • Nausea
  • Tremors
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Constipation
  • Loss of appetite

Natural Remedies

Today you can find a myriad of natural remedies that is recommended as pain relief for your dog. Some of the remedies include fatty acid supplements, turmeric, Chinese medicine that utilizes herbs and acupuncture, CBD oil, certain essential oils, massage and other natural pain remedies.

Some natural solutions are suitable for your dog’s pain. For example, if your dog has mild to moderate pain, a natural remedy may be the answer. But you may need something stronger for you dog if they suffer from moderate to severe pain. The best solution is to contact your veterinarian when in doubt.

Fortunately, today’s veterinarian will oftentimes subscribe a natural remedy for minor pain for your dog. According to the Veterinary Secrets, there is Dog Pain: Home Remedies That Quickly Work. These natural remedies may be effective if your dog is not in severe pain.


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