About Dr Chris Vanderhoof Dvm Mph
Dr. Chris Vanderhoof is a 2013 graduate of the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine at Virginia Tech, where he also earned a Masters in Public Health. He completed a rotating internship with Red Bank Veterinary Hospital in New Jersey and now works as a general practitioner in the Washington D.C. area. Dr. Vanderhoof is also a copywriter specializing in the animal health field and founder of Paramount Animal Health Writing Solutions, which can be found at www.animalhealthcopywriter.com. Dr. Vanderhoof lives in the Northern Virginia area with his family, including 3 cats.
Nsaids Toxicity In Cats
NSAIDs like acetaminophen, ibuprofen, and/or naproxen are NEVER safe to give to your cat. Using these can result in side effects. This is also known as NSAID toxicity and is characterized by the following symptoms:
- Swelling and pain in the abdomen
- Pale gums
It is important to note that NSAID toxicity is potentially fatal. Furthermore, many of its symptoms are similar to the symptoms of overall pain in your cat. If you suspect that your cat is suffering from NSAID toxicity, you have to take them to a veterinarian immediately.
Use Raised Food Bowls
- Make sure your cats food and water bowls are somewhere they can easily get to.
- Raising food and water bowls can help because bending down can be painful when you have arthritis. You can buy special raised bowls, or alternatively just place something solid underneath your cats bowl the lift it up to a height so they dont have to crouch to reach it. A pint glass full of water can be used as a water bowl.
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Laser Therapy For Dogs And Cats
Laser therapy for dogs and cats is a non-invasive, drug-free pain relief option. It involves holding a handheld device that emits concentrated light energy over the affected area. The light energy increases blood circulation and cellular activity which reduces pain and inflammation and speeds healing. It is useful as a pet pain management option for just about any condition or injury that causes pain. However, pets who have cancer will not benefit because the laser light could cause cancer cells to reproduce more quickly.
Common conditions we treat with laser therapy include:
- Wound healing
- Acute injuries
Add Supplements To Their Meals
Supplements can help your cat to stay strong and reduce possible inflammation in their body. These supplements usually contain vitamins, such as C and D, which are known to help common painful ailments like arthritis.
You can find supplements in a chewy tablet or you can get it in a liquid form to mix into their food. The liquid option often contains fish oil which is high in Omega-3s which help to naturally reduce inflammation throughout the body, including the heart, skin, and kidneys.
Its important to be careful though when giving your cat supplements as giving them too much could cause some health problems. For instance, if the supplements contain high levels of certain vitamins, especially D3, it could end up being toxic to your cat. Because of this, its important to read the directions of the supplements to find the right amount to give them. You also should talk your plans over with your vet to ensure that the supplements you plan to use are safe and if they have other supplement recommendations for you to use.
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How Long Will A Cat With Arthritis Live
Your cats arthritis will continue to progress over time. Although theres no cure for arthritis, by working closely with your vet, there are lots of ways you can control the symptoms and keep your cat comfortable.
With long-term management, most cats will have a good quality of life for many years and for a lot of cats, well controlled arthritis wont shorten their lives.
Are There Any Alternatives
Since Meloxicam can have severe side effects and can even result in several complications, many pet parents look for alternatives. There are various alternatives to the drug thatare safer and even more effective. These alternatives are natural ones that can reduce the chances of any side effects. Some most common alternatives to Meloxicam for dogs may be:
- CBD treats
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What If I Miss A Dose
If you miss a dose, then we recommend that you give the dose immediately. However, if a lot of time has passed and its almost time for the next dose, then we recommend that you administer the second dose and forget about the first one. However, do notdouble up the dose as it can lead to poisoning and severe side effects.
Pain Relief For Dogs: The Absolute Nos
The following over the counter human medications are DEFINITE NO-NOs for dogs.
These medications, including anti inflammatory drugs and others, were developed to address human pain specifically and are therefore unsafe to give your dog.
Instead of easing pain for your pup, they can potentially do a lot more harm than good.
NEVER give your dog:
- Ibuprofen found in Advil, Motrin, and Nuprin
- Acetaminophen found in Tylenol and many decongestants
- Naproxen found in Aleve
Though these drugs are commonly recommended as OTC pain relievers for people, they are dangerous for animal consumption and should never be administered to a dog under any circumstance whatsoever.
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What Does Gabapentin Do For Cats
Gabapentin is used as a pain medication for chronic pain and, sometimes, to help calm down frightened cats.
In cats, gabapentin is most often used as a pain medication for chronic pain, such as from arthritis.
Gabapentin has also been recognized to be beneficial in reducing the fear responses that a kitty may have to the stress of handling and being examined at the vet.
Its common for vets to prescribe a single dose of it to be given a couple of hours prior to veterinary visits to provide some sedation and help examination and handling to be less stressful for certain patients.
Anecdotally, it also appears to help keep some cats much calmer for car or plane travel and may be recommended to help make longer trips less stressful.
Studies have not shown gabapentin to be as effective for acute pain in cats as some other medications like buprenorphine, and so it is less commonly prescribed for a sudden onset of a painful condition, or after surgery.
What Can I Give My Cat For Pain Relief
Discovering your cat is in pain can be a very difficult thing. How can you help them? Are there medications you can administer to them? How do you know these medicines are safe? It can be easy to panic when your cat is in pain, but its important not to. This article will explore some ways you can help your cat heal and feel better quickly.
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Why Human Pain Medications Should Not Be Given To Cats
Humans and cats are mammals, which means there are similarities in our metabolism and organ systems. However, there are many instances when cats and humans differ greatly in the way they metabolize certain substances or chemicals. This is true with NSAIDs. Cat parents should always remember that over-the-counter human-grade medications should NOT be given to cats as they are extremely sensitive to the side effects.
Getting Your Cat To Take The Pills
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What Can You Do To Manage My Cats Pain
First and foremost your cat needs a full examination from their veterinarian, in order to determine what is causing their pain. From there, your vet will draw up a treatment plan in order to address your cats individual issue.
Depending on the condition, there are a variety of methods to treat your cats pain. Your doctor will likely recommend one or more of the following:
Benefits And Uses Of Aspirin For Dogs
Managing pain, inflammation, and blood clots are the main roles of Aspirin. However, this popular tablet comes with several benefits. Lets take a closer look at the different Aspirin uses for adult dogs.
Aspirin for Pain Relief. The most popular Aspirin use is for pain control. In dogs, common causes of pain and discomfort are osteoarthritis, leg injuries, and dental issues.
Aspirin for Inflammation and Fever. As a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug, Aspirin can control inflammation and decrease fever. This feature can also be used in dogs with arthritis.
Aspirin for Blood Clotting Prevention. Aspirin affects platelet function. Its blood-thinning or anticoagulant effect prevents the formation of blood clots and decreases the risk of strokes in dogs.
Aspirin for Cancer Management. A groundbreaking study showed that Aspirin may prevent cancer spreads in dogs by stopping the malignant cells from hijacking the platelets.
Aspirin for Eye Problems. Another exciting study suggests that Aspirin use helps decrease the incidence of retinopathies in diabetic dogs.
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Pain Relief For Dogs: Final Thoughts
No loving pet parent ever wants to see their four-legged friend in pain.
As tempting as it may be, however, to forage through your medicine cabinet for a quick fix, traditional over the counter medications developed specifically for humans isnt ideal when it comes to pain management in dogs, as the potential side effects can ultimately do more harm than good. The same can be said for many of the stronger pain medications traditionally prescribed by animal hospitals.
Fortunately, there are more holistic options on the market today than ever, many of which are ideal for easing pain, discomfort, and arthritis-related issues such as joint stiffness. Integrating these options into your dogs healthcare regimen in conjunction with the care plan developed by your holistic veterinarian is a sure way to promote your dogs health and happiness and put them well on their way to recovery.
The Sciencehow Nsaids Work
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs affect substances called prostaglandins that the body releases in response to irritation or injury. When a cell is damaged, an enzyme called cyclooxygenase is activated. An enzyme is a protein made by the body that speeds up a chemical reaction. The enzyme itself remains unchanged during the reaction. Essential to all body functions, enzymes are very specificeach enzyme stimulates a specific reaction that causes a specific result.
In the case of the enzyme COX, it stimulates cells to produce several substances, including prostaglandins, after the cells are damaged. COX is present in most body tissues, including the digestive tract and kidneys.
Prostaglandins are present throughout the body and have several important functions. These substances:
- Contribute to pain, inflammation, and fever
- Protect the lining of the stomach and intestines
- Help maintain blood flow to the kidneys and
- Support platelet function .
Many NSAIDs work by blocking COX, so fewer prostaglandins are produced:
Other NSAIDs work by blocking some activity of certain prostaglandins:
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How Can I Know If My Cat Is In Pain
With obvious injuries or after surgical procedures, it can be reasonably assumed that a cat will experience pain. Although the signs may be subtle, careful observation of a cats everyday behaviors will often reveal pain when it is present. A cat may decline to jump, avoiding the windowsill or the back of the sofa. They may still be able to get to their favorite resting spots, but take several small jumps to get there, for example from a chair to a table to a windowsill. A cat may decide that the stairs are too difficult to navigate and remain on a single level of the home. Some cats that are in pain will sleep more than usual, while others may be restless and unable to settle into a comfortable position. A cat that begins to soil out of the litterbox may in fact be feeling pain and is avoiding the step or jump into a high walled litter box.
Keep in mind that arthritic pain is common in older cats and may be manifested in many different ways depending on the area of the body that is affected, yet it is very difficult for a pet owner to identify the source without professional help. Observe your cat carefully before visiting your veterinarian so you can report accurately the changes in behavior you are seeing.
Some additional signals that a cat could be in pain include :
- resisting handling or being picked up
- withdrawal from family activity/anti-social
- aggression or unexpected reactions when approached or handled
- stiffness or limping
What Is An Analgesic What Is An Opioid
Lets quickly and briefly define some of our terms. When it comes to caring for cats, we should be well aware of what exactly we are giving them in service of pain relief. Analgesic is the simplest place to start. Not to go too far down the etymological trail, but the word derives from Greek, and it means a method of freeing someone from pain. This includes medications ranging in strength from childrens aspirin and mundane, over-the-counter things such as ibuprofen to dangerously -addictive drugs such as morphine and buprenorphine.
These last two are classified as opiates, or, more broadly, opioids. What are opiates, then? And how are they different from opioids? Strictly speaking, a proper opiate is a medication whose direct source is found in the poppy plant. An opioid used to be medications synthetically crafted to mimic or duplicate the actions of naturally derived opiates. Today, opioid is the preferred nomenclature, because it encompasses natural, semi-synthetic, and purely synthetic products. Opioids do not treat the source of pain or distress, they simply block receptors in the brain that send pain messages to the body.
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Give Your Cat A Comfortable Bed
- Place a selection of beds around your home for your cat to choose from. Remember to put them at several at different heights, your cat may not be able to jump as high up as they used to.
- Orthopaedic memory foam beds can be really comfortable for cats with arthritis.
- A heated bed can naturally help sooth your cats joints.
Can I Give My Dog Aspirin
Yes, you can give your dog Aspirin. However, first, you need to talk to your vet in terms of suitability, dosage, and administration frequency. This is because Aspirin is a human pain-reliever, and its use in veterinary medicine is off-label.
Aspirin is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug with accented fever-reducing, pain control, and anti-clotting properties. It belongs to the group of NSAIDs together with Ibuprofen and Acetaminophen .
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What To Do When Your Cat Is In Pain
A call to your veterinarian is an important step in addressing your pets dilemma. Prepare to be asked about your pets history and to explain or enumerate the symptoms displayed by your cat. Depending on your vets assessment, you may be asked to bring your pet in for further examination and laboratory tests.
Pain Management For Your Cat
When it comes to managing your cat’s pain, Cat Care Center offers the highest quality of care utilizing compassion and the most effective feline-centric medical treatments available. We develop a unique pain management plan to best serve the individual needs of your cat. This plan may include medication and complementary treatment, such as My Pet Laser, Loop of Assisi, or a combination of both.
Pets often share traits in common with their humans like a love of popcorn or an achy hip. Research has shown animals also share the way they experience pain. Therefore, you may recognize some medications, techniques, and care for animal pain that your own doctor similarly prescribed for you. Common medications we prescribe for pets include analgesics, non-steroidal anti-inflammatories , anti-anxiety medications, or topical anesthetics. However, it is very important to note that you should never give your cat medication designed for a human without first consulting with us. Many medications designed for humans can cause life-threatening and irreversible reactions in cats. As with small children, medications should be kept out of reach of your cat.
We may also prescribe lifestyle changes for your cat. A specific diet, soft bedding, stairs to access perches or vertical spaces, age-appropriate play, raised food and water dishes, or an extra snuggle now and then are just some of the things that may help decrease your cat’s pain at home.
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