Your furball is more than just a pet – it’s part of your family, which is why it is heartbreaking seeing your cat in pain. If you are a loving cat owner, you know how frustrating it can be noticing your kitty is in pain, but not being able to tell where, why or what to do about it. Today, the market is filled with medication that can provide pain relief for pets. However, not all of them are natural, safe or support the overall well-being of your furry loved one. If you ever wondered “What can I give my cat for pain?”, here’s everything you need to know about pain medication for cats, over the counter pain meds for cats and other safe and natural alternatives.
How to tell if your cat is in pain?
Our pets feel pain, just as we do, but it’s difficult for them to let us know how much they hurt. Cats communicate their pain and discomfort in various ways. Unfortunately, it’s easy for us to overlook these signals, since cats are “wired” to hide any signs of pain that would show their vulnerability to potential predators. But, if you spend a lot of time interacting with your kitty, you will definitely notice if something’s off. Here are some of the most common signs that will help you know if you cat is in pain:
Behavioural signs that a cat is in pain
The best way to know if your cat is in pain is to observe it’s behaviour. If you notice decreased interest in things your cat usually likes to do, like playing and exploring outside, it may be a sign that your cat is in pain. It may no longer jump up onto beds or the couch, due to the expectation that it will hurt. Cats being withdrawn and hiding away, easily irritated or losing their appetite is also a reason for concern.
Body language of a cat in pain
A cat in pain may also display gradual or sudden changes in posture and body language. This can include more tension in their body, crouching, hunching or lowering their head, as well as decreased or increased grooming of a particular area, where the pain might be located.
Some health-related symptoms like diarrhea, limping, vomiting, urinating problems, not drinking enough water and so forth, could also indicate that a cat is in pain.
Pain relief for cats
So what can you do to relieve your cat’s pain? Calling your vet immediately and explaining the symptoms should always come first, if you suspect your cat is in pain. If you can’t schedule an appointment soon enough, there are a few pain relief medications for cats that you can give them at home. Remember, though, they’re only temporary and are no substitute for a vet visit.
What medication can you give a cat for pain at home?
The good news is that there’s a lot you can do for your cat if it’s in pain. There are a variety of pain medication and other alternatives you can use to provide pain relief for your cat, although the underlying conditions always need to be treated by a veterinarian. Still, not all pain meds are safe for cats, which is why it is extremely important knowing what you can give your cat for pain.
Over the counter pain meds for cats
Cat owners will often be tempted to give their furry pal a quick fix. Do not give into this urge, as it can be very dangerous. Consult with your vet before giving your cat any over the counter medication for pain relief.
Can you give human medication to cats for pain?
When pet parents ask themselves “What can I give my cat for pain?”, their mind usually wanders to common human painkillers, like aspirin. However, you should never give it to your cat! Many pain medications people use, such as the common anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen, aspirin and especially Tylenol, can be extremely harmful and even fatal to felines, as they aren’t capable of properly digesting them.
Safe pain medication for cats
Don’t open your medicine cabinet looking to help ease your cat’s pain. You may do more harm than good. Here are some safer options:
Corticosteroids, such as cortisone and prednisone, can help relieve your cat’s pain. Since a cat’s pain is usually associated with inflammation, these pain meds are effective, as they treat both conditions. However, they have serious side effects, so shouldn’t be used long-term.
Opioids, such as fentanyl and morphine are a quick pain relief for cats, that veterinarians use for controlling strong, acute pain. But, they are best used in a hospital setting, hence not the greatest option, particularly on a long-term basis.
Safe and natural alternatives to pain medication for cats
Pain meds are not the only, or sometimes even the best way, to provide a cat with pain relief. If you’re wondering: “What can I give my cat for pain?” and wish to keep it as safe as possible, here are a few natural alternative options you should consider:
Appropriate nutrition can go a long way in relieving pain in cats. Instead of giving your cat medication for pain relief, you can change its diet. Excess body weight not only puts stress on your cat’s joints, but it also promotes the inflammation that is at the heart of the pain. Foods abundant in vitamins and omega-3 fatty acids, like salmon can help relieve your kitty’s pain.
Alternative cat pain therapies
Massage therapy, underwater treadmill activity, joint manipulation and stretching, acupuncture and other forms of homeopathic, holistic therapies can help reduce chronic pain and provide natural pain relief for cats with arthritis and other painful conditions.
Vitamin deficiency not only results in a weakened immune system and a number of health issues, but can also increase the pain your feline friend is experiencing. You can boost your cat’s overall health and reduce it’s pain safely by focusing on a vitamin-packed diet or using natural dietary supplements. ImmunoPet regulates your cat’s immune system, helps relieve joint pain and stiffness, and also reduces flaky patches of skin and skin irritations that may arise as a result of localized pain in cats. Oh, and did I mention it’s 100% safe and natural?
What medication can I give my cat for pain at home?
No human pain medication is 100% safe for your pet. Although we treat them as equal members of our family, our pets are not simply “small humans,” and we can’t just adjust the dose of medications to their size. So, resist the urge to give your cat over-the-counter meds for pain to help it feel better, without consulting with your veterinarian first. Together, you can determine what combination of diet and other forms of pain therapy or pain medication might be best for relieving your cat’s pain “fur real”!
Jack was born and educated in Ireland and U.K. He has a varied education, mostly in engineering projects. Since then he has worked with a number of major companies with interests in various parts of the world. His personal interests include athletics, cross country skiing and especially long distance running. Jack has competed in many running events and some at an international level, including many marathons. He has always had a keen interest in maintaining a healthy lifestyle. More recently he has specialized in the areas of health and supplements, with a special focus on the immune system.