Cat: How do I know if my animal is in pain?

To help veterinarians identify a cat’s pain, stress and anxiety…. A scale called the Feline Grimace Scale (FGS) has been developed at the University of Montreal. This in order to obtain these results from the facial expressions of these felines. The Leenkus editorial team takes stock!

Traits that will help you tell if your cat is in pain

With the help of the World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA)… The University of Montreal created a website to publicize the project launched in 2020. A year later, they therefore launched an application for mobile phones and tablets which effectively allows the broadcast to continue and for more people to interact with the scale.

To continue to help veterinarians and owners of these pets… In recent days, the same Canadian institution has launched an update to several of the keys. By explaining how this tool works and making it easier to use. Owner of a cat? Read on!

Five characteristics define the pain of a cat!

Five characteristics define the pain of a cat!

It is indeed the position of the cat’s ears, the opening of the eyes, the tension of the muzzle. Also the position of the whiskers and the movement of the head.

The Feline Grimace Scale indicates that when a cat is away, the ears are forward, the eyes are open, the muzzle and whiskers are relaxed, and the head is in line with the line of the shoulders. Moderately present? We can observe the ears slightly apart, the eyes partially open, the muzzle a little tense, the whiskers a little curved and the head in the axis of the line of the shoulders.

Finally, for a marked presence of the cat, the ears are flattened and turned outwards, the eyes squinted, the muzzle explicitly stretched, the whiskers straight forward and the head tilted downwards.

A difficult character!

A difficult character!

Indeed, the qualification of pain in a cat is based on the identification of behavioral changes induced by pain. But given their unique behavior…. In these pets, it is quite difficult to recognize pain.

Just like humans, cats in general have both short-term and long-term memory. This allows it to keep all kinds of memories related to its owner or to moments, pleasant or unpleasant.

According to animal behaviorist Mikel Delgado, animals have the ability to store memories and associate actions based on them when the occasion arises. This allows them to easily survive in the wild.

cat: Smell plays a role in memory

Smell plays a role in memory

“If a cat has a very unpleasant experience, it will remember it very well. They just remember what is important to survive and be safe.” Delgado at The Dodo.

Moreover, according to a study published in the journal Animal Cognition… Adult felines can remember the last 16 hours in the short term. Cats less than a year old do not have such a great memory capacity. However, their sense of smell plays an important role in long-term memory. As adults, these pets become more likely to react to a specific smell than to a place or person.

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