Pain Management

Fuquay Varina Veterinarian: Expert in Pain Management and Treatment

dog in pain in Fuquay Varina, NC

When your pet is in pain, whether from an acute or chronic condition, it’s critical to manage it properly. If pain isn’t managed, your pet may try to avoid it by scrunching up, limping, or something else that could cause further damage and prevent total healing. Often, though, you may not realize your pet is in pain because they don’t show it in the same way we humans do. In fact, their instinct is to hide their pain to keep prospective predators at bay.

If you suspect your pet is hurting, call Hilltop Animal Hospital, our Fuquay Varina veterinarian. We have a safe and effective protocol for alleviating your pet’s pain and making him or her more comfortable whether it’s a case of osteoarthritis, pain from an injury or surgery, or disease such as cancer. Proper pain management can not only help your dog find relief, but also help him to live longer.

Acute vs Chronic Pain

It’s important to understand the difference between acute and chronic pain. Acute pain comes on suddenly and fiercely and usually occurs after surgery, injury or infection. Acute pain can be extremely excruciating and causes a reluctance to move the affected areas. The good news is that prompt and effective treatment alleviates this type of pain quickly. Chronic pain, on the other hand, is more insidious. It comes on slowly and is initially hard to detect. Arthritis is the most common cause, though other conditions, such as cancer, can also cause it. Chronic pain can never be completely cured, but it can be managed through the protocols used by our Fuquay Varina veterinarian.

Signs That Your Cat or Dog May be in Pain

If you think your pet may be in pain, observe him carefully. The signs may be subtle, but with careful monitoring, you will notice some changes in behavior. Here are some of the signs you should watch for:

  • Uncharacteristic quiet and lethargic behavior

  • Whimpering or crying

  • Aggressive behavior: biting, growling or snapping

  • Relentless licking, typically of one area of her body

  • Significant behavior changes

  • Ears held flat against the head

  • No appetite or trouble eating

  • Limps or staggers

  • Avoids active behaviors


Your pet’s pain is a serious issue and if you suspect there is an issue, do contact us at Hilltop Animal Hospital, your expert Fuquay Varina veterinarian, right away. We can isolate where the pain is coming from and provide the medication or therapy that will soothe him or her.  Some of the medications we use include the following:

  • NSAIDS – These medications, generally used for milder pain, help to control inflammatory processes such as swelling and its associated pain. However, careful monitoring is necessary because of potential adverse effects on the liver, kidney or stomach.

  • Opiods – These drugs help alleviate more severe pain and include morphine, codeine, fentanyl, among others.

  • Corticosteriods – Cortisone and prednisone are two examples in this class. These drugs are effective in controlling inflammation but can have serious side effects and need to be monitored closely.


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Read What Our Clients Say

  • "The best. Dr Scotty Gibbs always takes the time to comfort our dogs and us. Have gone there for years. Would not want to go anywhre else"
    Sandy Brink
  • "Dr Gibbs & all the Staff at Hilltop are gifted, talented, caring, and amazing. It would be hard to find a better veterinary clinic."
    Steve Holbrooks