But what if you can't talk and are predisposed to hide your pain? How do you tell others where it hurts?Simple, behaviour changes. For dogs, if the pain isn't acute for example, I stepped on a piece of glass and cut my paw, they can have all manner of painhaviours we might miss. These are just some of the symptoms I see regularly when working with dogs:
- Breath, heart or pulse rate change
- Furrowed brow
- Sleeping more
- Not wanting to be touched in a certain area or not at all
- Defensiveness around others of their species
- Over grooming an area
- Spasm/twitch in the skin or a hair change like a swirl or texture change
- Holding themselves differently, i.e. looking tucked up in the abdomen or bearing less weight on one leg
- Reluctance to get in the car or climb the stairs
- Turning around quickly to look at an area of their body
- Lack of appetite
- Excessively stretching .
- If you have a hunch but no hard evidence that your dog is in pain and
- You turn up at the vets and your dog has a massive adrenalin hit which along with their predisposition to hide weakness, covers the few signs they may exhibit.
Animal Behaviourist, Tellington TTouch Practitioner, Real Dog Yoga Instructor & Author
Toni has worked with domesticated and wild canids since 1989. After a long and successful career with the Guide Dogs for the Blind Association, she started her own business as a Tellington TTouch Companion Animal Practitioner. She is now one of the highest qualified Practitioners in the UK. In 2001 her skills in TTouch took Toni to the UK Wolf Conservation Trust were she meet a pack of socialised wolves. She went on to work with them for over a decade as a Senior Wolf Handler and Education Officer for the organisation. In more recent years, Toni has gone on to become a Real Dog Yoga Instructor, (Visit www.therealdogyoga.co.uk to find out more) and updated her qualifications in behaviour with the International School of Psychology and Behaviour, for which she is also an affiliate. She is now a full member of The Association of INTO Dogs as a certified canine behaviourist. She teaches all over the UK and abroad, works with clients' one to one, and writes. Toni lives in Oxfordshire, England with her husband and their dog MrP.
Over the last two decades, Toni has been developing her writing. She spent two years editing and writing features for Wolf Print, the UK Wolf Conservation Trust's international magazine. She went on to write for national dog magazines, rescue society newsletters and blogs. Her first and second book, The Truth about Wolves & Dogs, (Hubble and Hattie 2012) and Among the Wolves (Hubble and Hattie 2015) have been a great success. Her latest writing collaboration with co-author Karen Bush sees a series of books entitled HELP! My Dog is…. Titles include, HELP! My Dog's Scared of Fireworks, HELP! My Dog doesn't Travel Well in the Car, HELP! My Dog is Destroying the Garden and HELP! My Dog has a Canine Compulsive Disorder. All are available in paperback and eBook format on Amazon. Toni and Karen have many more titles planned under the banner of Skinny Dog Books – named as they both own sighthounds and the books are small and concise. Visit www.tonishelbourne.co.uk for more details about Toni, her work and books. Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/The-Truth-about-Wolves-Dogs-216136181810393/ Twitter: @tonishelbourne