Not feeling well? Having cramps? What do you do when you have cramps? Get cranky, have mood swings, and experience an emotional roller-coaster. Ever thought about what your dog goes through during her periods?
Just as we humans have our menstrual cycle, dogs have their heat cycle. And they feel every bit of the pain we feel and have emotional and hormonal imbalances as well. It is not just some mild discomfort they feel.
When a dog is in her heat cycle, she can experience period cramps. It is different from what we humans face. They may not be extremely painful, but they can get quite uncomfortable, which is visible when they are in that phase. Before knowing how to relieve dog period cramps, it is important to know the symptoms.
Symptoms for period cramps in dogs.
It is not easy to understand if your dog is getting cramps. They can’t express their pain through words like us, so we have to figure out if they are having cramps through their symptoms.
A dog shows symptoms like lethargy when they are cramping. It is also a very basic symptom of any kind of illness. They get exhausted and become restless during this time. Their digestive system gets stressed, as well as their spine. They might limp as they walk and move more slowly than they usually do.
This can continue even after the cramping has been reduced. It is best to keep them at rest until they are feeling their usual self. You can use a calming bed if necessary.
Decrease in appetite
Dogs can stop eating or eat less than usual if they are getting period cramps. It is not unusual to have a decrease in appetite. It could be a sign that they are in discomfort or in pain.
If your dog is a foodie and you notice that she is not in the mood to eat, then that is a sign of period cramps. But if that continues for a long time, then you need to consult a vet as that could be something very serious.
Another sign of having period cramps is a bloated belly. An increase in fluid retention can be a reason. This happens during their periods. This puts a lot of pressure on their lungs because of the extra fluid, and they start panting more than usual.
A dog or puppy can start to breathe heavily as they are menstruating. This can happen because of the hormonal changes that their bodies are going through; the hormonal changes can make them anxious.
As humans, we show our discomfort and pain in many ways, but our dogs can. So when they are experiencing pain, they start to stress about it, and that is when the painting starts. Just try to keep them calm and provide a peaceful environment to help her go through this difficult time.
Dogs shake when they are in pain. This can take place when their heat cycle starts but mainly can happen when they are cramping. If the cramps are mild, then the shaking can also be mild, and if they are severe, the intensity of the shaking can increase.
But don’t always think they are shaking because they r cramping. This can happen when they are cold or anxious as well.
How to relieve dog period cramps?
This is a difficult time for them. Their behavior changes, and it is probably best to keep them away from your other pets and let them relax and have what they want. Let’s check out the possible answers to the question of how to relieve dog period cramps.
Use dog-specific heating pads
Use a specific heating pad for dogs under her belly when she is lying down. Do not keep it on her for a long time; just give it at regular intervals. This helps in relaxing the muscle tissues in the uterus. The heat helps improve the flow of blood and relaxes them.
If you don’t have a heating pad, use a hot water bottle. That will help as well. You can have a homemade heating pack. Put a wet towel in a microwave-safe freezing bag and then heat it in the microwave. Check the temperature, and if needed, use another cloth so that it is comfortable for your furry friend.
A gentle message goes a long way. They are in pain and can’t express that in words, so the best we can do is to keep them comfortable. A nice message with soothe them, and she might get rid of the negative emotions she is feeling.
This is basically just calming them down and taking the tension away. They may not understand the reason behind feeling uneasy during their heat cycle.
Their reaction will let you know if the massage is helping or not. If they are not enjoying it, then stop. But if they are making low grunts and keeping their eyes closed, then it is okay. That means the massage is helping.
Give her attention
During this heat cycle, dogs can behave in two different ways. Some dogs like to be left alone and deal with the pain by themselves. But some crave attention and care more than anything during this time.
If they follow you around the house and want to be by your side, then they need your attention. Just be by their side and give them assurance that you are there for them. Run your fingers through their coat and talk to them. They feel calm and relaxed through these gestures.
Take them for a walk
The best way to deal with pain is to divert attention to something else. That applies to dogs as well. Take their mind off the pain. Play with them or take them for a walk. This way, you can bond with your canine queen, as this will take her mind off the stress as well. They don’t completely understand why their body is changing or why they are not feeling their regular self.
Another thing is if they are exhausted and tired from all the play sessions and work, they will rest more or sleep more. That will ease their discomfort.
Give them toys
Chew toys are like yoga for dogs. It calms them down, distracts them from the negative emotions, and helps them relax.
Different kinds of chew toys will keep them entertained and keep the stress away. If treat-stuffed toys are there, then that is even better. All their attention will be on unfolding the treat, and this will keep their mind off the pain. Again distraction comes to our rescue.
Music helps everyone to relax, and that includes dogs as well. This has been seen that relaxing music can help dogs calm down and relieve their stress. Researchers have seen that soft rock and reggae help dogs calm down. So why not play some music and help them during this difficult time?
If you want to do something else for your dog, then you can try acupressure. Get her to a holistic vet and see the changes in her behavior. It improves the flow of blood and relaxes the uterine muscles.
This helps in stimulating pain-relieving and anti-stress hormones known as endorphins. This will help her with her period cramps.
The heating session is a dreadful time for dogs as well as their parents. This is when you have to see them go through the pain that they can’t even express properly. You have to be prepared for anything, as their odd behavior can catch you off-guard. You have to try all the ways possible to give them the comfort they need if they are letting you get close to them.
All you can do is try to help them as much as possible. Try to distract them and take their pain off. But if nothing else works, you can try pain medications after consulting a vet. These are the simple answers to the question of how to relieve dog period cramps.