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Pet Pain Medication Bellingham WA

Many veterinarians similarly experience unbearable pity for the suffering of animal kind. Unlike Russell, who longed to reduce suffering but could not, we hold in our hands, hearts and minds a dramatic capacity to intervene on behalf of animals and lobby for better treatment, whether in the feedlot, the research lab or in the veterinary clinic.

Kulshan Veterinary Hospital
(360) 325-7310
8880 Benson Rd
Lynden, WA
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Call Kulshan Veterinary Hospital Today to schedule an appointment for your pet!
Hours
Monday 7:30 AM - 6:00 PM
Tuesday 7:30 AM - 6:00 PM
Wednesday 7:30 AM - 6:00 PM
Thursday 7:30 AM - 6:00 PM
Friday 7:30 AM - 6:00 PM
Saturday 7:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday Closed
Services
Animal Boarding, Animal Daycare, Animal Flea Control, Animal Grooming, Animal Microchipping, Bird Vet, Declawing, Emergency Veterinary Clinic, Equine Vet, Exotic Animal Vet, Large Animal Vet, Reptile Vet, Small Animal Vet, Spaying/Neutering, Veterinarians, Veterinary Dentistry, Veterinary Euthanasia, Veterinary House Calls, Veterinary Medical Specialties, Veterinary Surgery

Banfield Pet Hospital - Bellingham
(360) 325-7502
4379 Meridian St
Bellingham, WA
 
Banfield Pet Hospital - Burlington
(360) 442-4967
1969 Marketplace Dr.
Burlington, WA
 
Little, Shannon, Dvm - Banfield The Pet Hospital
(360) 312-3974
4379 Meridian St
Bellingham, WA

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Mountain Veterinary Hospital
(360) 592-5113
3413 Mt Baker Hwy
Bellingham, WA
 
Birch Point Cat & Dog Clinic
(360) 325-7271
1733 H St Ste 800
Blaine, WA
Hours
Monday 9:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Tuesday 9:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Wednesday 9:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Thursday 9:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Friday 9:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Saturday Closed
Sunday Closed
Services
Animal Flea Control, Animal Microchipping, Declawing, Holistic Veterinary Medicine, Small Animal Vet, Spaying/Neutering, Veterinarians, Veterinary Dentistry, Veterinary Docking, Veterinary Euthanasia, Veterinary House Calls, Veterinary Medical Specialties, Veterinary Surgery

Kulshan Veterinary Hospital
(360) 325-7531
8880 Benson Rd
Lynden, WA
 
Birch Point Cat & Dog Clinic
(360) 325-7366
1733 H St Ste 800
Blaine, WA
 
Banfield The Pet Hospital
(360) 312-4166
4379 Guide Meridian St
Bellingham, WA
 
Curtis, Michael, Dvm - Fountain Veterinary Hospital
(360) 733-2660
2430 Meridian St Ste 2
Bellingham, WA

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Standard of Pain Care

In his autobiography “What I Have Lived For,” humanitarian Bertrand Russell reflected on his past, writing:

“Three passions, simple but overwhelmingly strong, have governed my life: the longing for love, the search for knowledge, and unbearable pity for the suffering of mankind. … Love and knowledge, so far as they were possible, led upward toward the heavens. But always pity brought me back to earth. Echoes of cries of pain reverberate in my heart. … I long to alleviate the evil, but I cannot, and I too suffer.” 1

Many veterinarians similarly experience unbearable pity for the suffering of animal kind. Unlike Russell, who longed to reduce suffering but could not, we hold in our hands, hearts and minds a dramatic capacity to intervene on behalf of animals and lobby for better treatment, whether in the feedlot, the research lab or in the veterinary clinic.

We can upgrade standards of care from within our profession or wait for them to be imposed by public pressure. For better pain management in particular, science supports it, caregivers want it and we can provide it.

Ethics of Pain

It’s unclear why some veterinary patients are sent home to live a life of chronic pain after not receiving adequate pre-emptive, intraoperative or postoperative analgesia. That prompts one to ask what the medical or ethical justifications might be for letting animals live in pain.

Similar frustrations exist in the human medical community regarding insufficient pain control by practitioners who lack adequate awareness and education in pain medicine. This problem led the National Pain Foundation to assemble a Pain Patient Bill of Rights. 2

The bill highlights the “five pillars” of pain management:

  • Emotional and cognitive comfort. 
  • Physical restoration by means of therapy and rehabilitation measures. 
  • Pain medication. 
  • Interventional pain procedures (e.g., injections, regional blocks, epidural analgesia). 
  • Integrative pain medicine approaches such as acupuncture and manual therapy. 3

5 More Rights

Whether pain management can be considered a human “right” remains unresolved; it is questionable whether a parallel set of veterinary patient rights to proper pain management would be upheld by the profession. 4

At the very least, welfare standards advocated for animals used for food should apply to companion animals. Back in the 1970s, the Farm Animal Welfare Council assembled a list of “five freedoms” for farm animals. 5 Thirty years later, these freedoms still ring true no matter the animal’s role in life: freedom from hunger and thirst; freedom from discomfort; freedom from pain, injury or disease; freedom to express normal behavior; and freedom from fear and distress. 

Based on the five freedoms and the five pillars, a starting point emerges around which to begin discussion for standards of care regarding veterinary patients’ pain management:

1. Caregivers should receive pain management information and have their q...

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