Look for changes in attitude. Some dogs in pain will be scared or submissive. Others may be unwilling to interact with people. They may refuse to eat or lie down. There may be changes in body movement such as trembling without any stimulation or flinching with light pressure or brushing the fingertips over the affected area. Facial expressions may change. Your dog may have tight facial muscles, a wrinkled brow, lips drawn back, dilated pupils, or you may see a
grimace on your dog’s face with a fearful look in the eyes. Your dog may guard or bite at the painful area, tense the abdomen or growl when approached. Dogs with back or abdominal pain may appear hunched up or tense. Severe abdominal pain and your dog may stand with the rear legs with the front end and sternum on the ground. Short, shallow breathing can indicate pain. And the most obvious is crying, whining and whimpering.
Each dog is different in their pain tolerance and how they will show their pain, just as people are. Remember that some signs can have multiple causes. For example, short shallow breathing can be from anxiety as well as pain. Look at the circumstances as well as your dog’s personality when interpreting signs of pain. By paying close attention to little details you may find that your dog is indeed telling you something