Chronic Disease & Pain Management
Some diseases can be easily prevented, treated, or simply run their course and go away. Chronic conditions, on the other hand, are much more challenging because they usually cannot be completely resolved. Chronic diseases must be dealt with throughout a patient's life. Although there's no cure for chronic illnesses, they can be treated, and their progression can be slowed. Our veterinarian will also address the pain and symptoms pets experience as a result of chronic disease.
Common Chronic Diseases in Pets
Many chronic medical conditions affect both dogs and cats, including:
- Heart disease
- Chronic pancreatitis
- Hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism, and other endocrine disorders
- Kidney stones
- Kidney disease
- Inflammatory bowel disorder
- Urinary incontinence
Symptoms vary, depending on the condition and the pet. Any behavioral changes in a pet could indicate a problem and warrant a veterinary exam.
How to Tell if Your Pet Is in Pain
Pets have similar nervous systems as humans, which means they experience pain and elevated anxiety in a similar way to us. Pets, however, have no way to verbalize the pain they suffer, and they instinctively work hard to mask any signs of illness. If your pet is in pain, you might notice some of the following signs:
- • Stiffness or limping
• Difficulty laying down or standing up
• Decreased activity and disinterest in play
• Holds ears flat against their head
• Persistent licking of a certain area
• Reluctance to be handled
• Unusual vocalization or whimpering
• Personality changes
Early Diagnosis and Treatment of Chronic Conditions
The early detection and diagnosis of a chronic medical condition is essential to our veterinarian's ability to provide your pet with effective treatment. It's easier to slow the progression of a chronic disease than it is to reverse the damage it's already done. Since most pets mask their symptoms, it's important for pets to have regular wellness exams and for our veterinarian to perform diagnostic testing, such as x-rays, blood tests, or urinalysis, on a periodic basis.
If your pet is diagnosed with a chronic disease, our veterinarian at Wesson Animal Clinic will work with you to determine the best treatment plan possible. To manage pain and a chronic condition, our veterinarian will likely recommend a combination of lifestyle and dietary adjustments, dietary supplements, medication, and wellness therapies to slow the progression of disease, manage symptoms, and help your pet live a happy, comfortable life.