Pain Management

If a pet is experiencing pain, it can also take its toll on the owner if they are unable to provide the assistance needed to help alleviate it. When you bring your pet to Advanced Care Veterinary Clinic, our veterinary staff utilizes not only the most effective medical treatments available, but also provides the compassion needed to make your pet feel more comfortable. Our goal is to develop a customized pain management plan to best suit the unique needs of your pet. In many cases, this may include a combination of medication or complementary treatment options; however, just one approach may be needed. Working with an experienced team of Veterinarians, you can ensure your pet has the best pain management plan possible.

Small white-and-red cat and a huge black dog bulldog with a big mouth. Cat scratch dog claws, pink tongue. Dog scared.

Many pets that need pain management will share the same ailments that their human counterparts may have. This could include joint pain, muscle soreness or a wide variety of other symptoms that you may also experience regularly. It’s important to understand that pain management veterinarians will often encourage some of the same lifestyle changes, medications and care plans that a doctor would prescribe to a human that is also experiencing similar symptoms. As you might have guessed, this could include the prescription of NSAIDs or topical anesthetics but may also require nutritional changes or low-frequency laser therapy for inflammation reduction. Advanced Care Veterinary Hospital employs a variety of pain management strategies and can help create the perfect care plan for your cat or dog.

Signs of Pain in Pets

Doctor holding rabbit

Finding your pet in pain can be a hard situation. Whether you have raised the pet yourself or adopted them at a later age, the bond you have formed with them can make it difficult to feel okay seeing them in that state. Whether the signs are just becoming apparent or they have gradually gotten worse over time, treating your pet's pain symptoms is critical for ensuring they are living the best life possible. That is why being aware of your pet’s current condition and monitoring any changes is so important. The longer pain persists, the worse the impact could be on your pet’s overall health.

Early intervention is critical for minimizing the pain that a pet experiences and improving the chances of proper recovery. For this reason, pet owners need to understand the signs and symptoms associated with pain in pets. Determining whether a pet is experiencing chronic or acute pain is often the first step. Chronic pain persists for long periods and may be accompanied by other health issues that contribute to pain like arthritis, tooth decay or joint inflammation. Acute pain, however, will often be a sudden change that is triggered by a specific event.

Some common signs that a pet may be experiencing pain include:

  • Loss or Change of Appetite
  • Vomiting or Nausea
  • Limping
  • Fever or Behavioral Changes
  • Vocalization
  • Targeted Licking
  • Bathroom Habit Changes
  • Excessive Panting
  • Hiding

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Pain Management Medication for Pets

Dog given medication through iv

Common medications that are given to pets for pain management include non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), analgesics, topical anesthetics or anti-anxiety medications. While many of the medicines that are prescribed to pets are seemingly the same as those found for humans, giving your pet medications that aren’t prescribed to them by a veterinarian can cause irreversible or life-threatening damage in dogs and cats. The same principals that applied to children and safely storing medication should be kept in mind when you have pets in the house as well to avoid any potential problems that may occur with accidental ingestion.

Before starting a pain management medication for your pet, it is important to speak with your veterinarian to determine what medication is being prescribed, the intended goal of the medication, dosing instructions, side effects to watch for, your dog’s previous medical history and any other guidelines that they may have to make the process as safe and successful as possible. Once you begin treatment with pain management medications, it is important to observe your cat or dog for any side effects that may occur.

Things to watch for include:

  • Depression, Lethargy or Behavioral Changes
  • Vomiting
  • Yellowing of Gums, Skin or the Eyes
  • Diarrhea or Black Stools
  • Drinking Changes
  • Scabs, Excessive Scratching or Redness

While most medications are generally considered safe, an underlying condition in your pet could lead to unforeseen problems. Although we take every precaution necessary to pinpoint these problems, they may also develop over time. If you observe any of these potential interactions when your pet begins taking pain management medication, contact the veterinarian staff at Advanced Care Veterinary Hospital. Pets that have an adverse reaction to certain medications may have other options or complementary services available to assist in limiting chronic or acute pain. Our team is here to ensure that your cat or dog has a perfect pain management plan to help them live their best life possible.

Complementary Pain Management for Pets

While many pet owners believe that medication is the only way to treat pain in pets, some pain management strategies may include complementary treatments designed to improve healing or reduce inflammation. As a leading provider of modern pain management solutions for pets, Advanced Care Veterinary Hospital offers many alternative therapies for pets including massage, laser therapy, chiropractic care and acupuncture. Whether used in conjunction with pain management medication or administered as a singular approach, our veterinary staff has had great results with a variety of different pets in managing or eliminating pain.

Advanced Care Veterinary Hospital is also a leading provider of canine rehabilitation services. This process involves the use of exercises and regenerative medicine techniques that are designed to improve rehabilitation and recovery in dogs. While this process provides many benefits like improved muscle strength, enhanced circulation and better mobility, it also provides the support needed to alleviate the chronic pain that may be occurring. For this reason, some dogs may need rehabilitation services in conjunction with pain management medication; particularly in geriatric dogs that need improved comfort or confidence in old age.

Acupuncture on paws

In some instances, chronic pain may be a sign that surgery may be needed. As a full-service veterinary hospital, Advanced Care can help ensure you, and your pet, are prepared for the process that is required to complete the procedure safely and successfully. No matter what type of surgery is required, our team is committed to ensuring that pet owners have the resources and information needed to make an informed decision for their pet. For more information about the types of surgery we provide and what to expect if surgery may be needed, please visit our dog surgery page to learn more.

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Why Choose Advanced Care Veterinary Hospital for Pain Management?

If your pet has been showing signs of pain or discomfort, the team at Advanced Care Veterinary Hospital is here to simplify the process. We have helped countless pet owners find the perfect pain management plan for their pets and would love to assist you. Once you bring your pet to our facilities, we can perform a thorough examination to determine the root cause and begin treating it with the appropriate methods. Our goal is to ensure your pet is comfortable and safe throughout their time in our veterinary hospital.

Education is our passion and our staff will take the time to ensure that a pet owner has the resources and information needed to successfully keep their pet free from pain. If your cat or dog is showing symptoms of pain, finding a trusted partner that can help treat them quickly and safely is critical for continued success. Should we find that your pet needs more than just a simple pain medication plan, we can provide surgery or other services as well. No matter what services your pet may need to feel better, our team is here to help provide them!

Doctor examining golden retriever dog in vet clinic

Does My Pet Need Pain Management?

In many cases, your veterinarian will need to perform a series of tests to find the source of the pain and may need to complete x-rays for a more detailed look if the pain is severe. Our veterinarians have refined the examination process to quickly diagnose the root problem and start providing your pet with relief. Don’t let your pet suffer when you don’t have to, let our knowledgeable and compassionate staff get to work helping your pet feel better today. Contact us to get started or schedule your appointment today. We look forward to helping you ensure your pet remains healthy and happy.

Advanced Care Veterinary Hospital Hallway

Meet Our Doctors

Jennifer Patton


Dr. Patton’s decision to pursue veterinary medicine came after she realized that while education and teaching is her passion, it is not something she could do as a career. Veterinary medicine allowed her to combine her love of animals with her love of teaching.

After she graduated from Oklahoma State University with her Doctorate, she practiced in several high volume hospitals in the Tulsa area, developing medical skills with varied case loads and growing her leadership skills.


Allissa Huckabay


Dr. Huckabay’s love of science and animals naturally led her to a lifelong passion of veterinary medicine. She worked and volunteered at a local veterinary hospital before she furthered her education at Oklahoma State University, graduating in 2016 with her Doctorate.

Dr Huckabay immediately found her home at ACVH, where she is able to create a healthy bond with each of her patients as she experiences all stages of their care with their owners.


Phillip Adolph

Phillip Adolph, DVM is a graduate of Oklahoma State University Veterinary Health Sciences. He also attended OSU for his undergraduate studies where he graduated with a Bachelors of Arts and Sciences in Agriculture through the College of Animal Sciences. Dr. Adolph was on the President’s Honor Roll and was a member of the OSU jazz orchestra. He joined the Advanced Care team immediately upon his graduation in 2019 after doing 6 weeks of externships during his 4th year of veterinary school.