Published by: Ingrid King. Last Updated on: February 6, 2023 by Crystal Uys


Cats are masters at masking pain. While acute pain may be fairly obvious to cat parents, it can be more difficult to discern whether your cat is in pain when it comes to chronic pain from conditions such as arthritis. Sadly, even veterinarians sometimes overlook signs of feline pain, or are not aggressive enough in treating it.

British veterinarian Mike Farrell, BVetMed CertVA CertSAS Diplomat ECVS MRCVS, an orthopedic surgeon with a strong interest in chronic pain management, has done a lot of work over the past few years to provide pet parents and veterinarians free access to clear and simple decision-making aids when it comes to dealing with cats in pain. “We currently rely on behavioral clues such as willingness to exercise and ability to jump, groom and interact,” says Dr. Farrell. He is collecting data about normal cat behavior that also include exercise, hunting habits, grooming, playing and eating. This important information will be used to answer the question “Is my cat painful?” by comparing the habits of normal cats to those of painful cats.

“If we couldn’t speak, like beauty, pain is only in the eye of the beholder,” says Dr. Farrell, which is why it’s so important that cat parents learn to detect signs of feline pain.

Please watch the video for more information.

Help Dr. Farrell’s research by completing a quick survey

A big thank you to all of you who already took Dr. Farrell’s original survey and participated in his research!

You can learn more about feline pain, and take a 3-minute survey to compare your cat to the cats whose data Dr. Farrell collected by by visiting his website. By taking the survey, you will contribute your cat’s data to the database and help expand knowledge about feline pain.

Photo by Cintya Marisa on Unsplash

About the author

3 Comments on How to Tell If Your Cat is in Pain

  1. Thank you. Garfield has some arthritis in his spine and hips. He misses his jumps a lot. He is under pain management.

    • Hi My name is Carla ,
      I have a black feral cat.
      I always make sure my Midnight
      is ok. I love him, I would do anything
      for him. We understand each other.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *