Anything that causes pain in people can be expected to cause pain in animals. Pets may not show the same symptoms of pain as people do; they usually don't whine or cry, but you can be sure they feel it. Pain medications needed will depend on the surgery performed. We include pain management with every surgical procedure for both the comfort of the patient, and to speed the recovery process. This may involve a postoperative injection which will ensure the patient is comfortable upon waking as well as a restful night's sleep at home.
When deemed necessary by the doctor, medication for the next few days is also included. Major procedures require more pain relief than things like minor lacerations. For dogs, we may recommend an oral anti-inflammatory the day after surgery and several days after to lessen the risk of discomfort and swelling. We use newer medications, which are less likely to cause stomach upset and can be given even the morning of surgery.
The cost of the medication will range depending on the size of your dog. Because cats do not tolerate standard pain medications such as aspirin, ibuprofen, or Tylenol, we are limited in what we can give them. Recent advances in pain medications have allowed for better pain control in cats than ever before. After surgery, pain medication is given on a case by case basis. Any animal that appears painful will receive additional pain medication.
At no time should you give your pet human medication unless directed by a veterinarian.