Pain in Pets: Beyond Physiology

Downing R, Della Rocca G. Pain in Pets: Beyond Physiology.
Animals (Basel). 2023 Jan 19;13(3):355.
doi: 10.3390/ani13030355.


Animals do not speak a language humans understand, making it easy to believe that they do not experience pain the way humans do. Despite data affirming that companion animals can and do experience pain much as do humans, there remains a gap between companion animal acute pain management knowledge and its execution. Companion animal pain is not simply a physiological issue. Veterinary clinicians can and should embrace the foundational principles of clinical bioethics-respect for autonomy, nonmaleficence, beneficence, and justice-translated from human medicine for the benefit of their patients. By reframing companion animal pain as a bioethical issue, as described in this paper, veterinarians affirm their commitment to closing the gap between what is known and what is done for painful companion animals. This takes pet pain beyond physiology.

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L'Associazione Italiana per lo Studio del Dolore è il capitolo italiano dell'International Association for the Study of Pain IASP® e della European Pain Federation EFIC®