How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Dr Scott Nimmo Your Own Question
Dr Scott Nimmo
Dr Scott Nimmo, Small Animal Veterinary Surgeon.
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 21793
Experience:  BVMS, MRCVS. { Glasgow UK }
Type Your Dog Question Here...
Dr Scott Nimmo is online now
This answer was rated:

My dog is suffering with a painful tail. I would like to give

him some pain relief so... Show More
him some pain relief so I can take a look. What would you recommend? I only have an Anadin extra, paracetamol 500mg and nurofen in the house. Thank you
Show Less
Ask Your Own Dog Question

Scott Nimmo :

Hello and welcome ... My name is XXXXX XXXXX I am an experienced small animal veterinary surgeon, I will be very pleased to work with you today and will try my best to answer your question to your satisfaction.

Scott Nimmo :

I am so glad you asked this and did not go ahead and dose Guinness with any of those, they are very unsuitable for dogs and there have been problems related to toxicity in dogs with these drugs.

Scott Nimmo :

You do have one option though, aspirin, which I know you may have to go out for. On a short term home remedy aspirin would be much safer and more effective than the other over the counter human pain killers and aspirin is sometimes prescribed for dogs. A typical dose rate would be 5 mg per pound of your dog's body weight twice daily. The judgment whether to dose with aspirin is of course up to you but here is a link to a an accurate web page with all the facts you might need including contraindications : LINK

Scott Nimmo :

That should safely do the trick, do not use coated aspirin in the dog as they cannot dissolve the coating in their intestinal tract, buffered is best but plain aspirin is just fine as well ..

Scott Nimmo :

I hope that has answered your question, can I help you further ... ?

Hello again Louisa,

We can carry on the conversation in this way if you need more information ...


Customer reply replied 4 years ago.
Thanks Scott.
Do you have any suggestions for how I can look at his tail to ascertain what is wrong with it? It feels swollen at the base and he is not lifting it at all. I have tried to feel amongst the hair for any obvious ticks or brambles etc but all I feel is a warm swollen base.
I am trying to avoid spending a significant amount in calling the vet on Easter Sunday but I am conscious he is in pain.
He us eating and drinking normally.
Hello again Louisa,

Glad to talk this over with you further ...

1. It sounds to me likely that Guinness may have a broken tail, or he may have some nerve damage to the upper tail area due to trauma which can also present like this.

This is a common situation which all small animal vets deal with from time to time, you will see it when dogs get their tails stuck in doors and where any trauma, sometimes very slight is applied to the tail.

Such dogs will hold their tail very low and may be reluctant or unable to wag it as usual, and you do see the typical droop from the site of the damage.

2. If this is a broken or traumatised tail then usually no treatment is necessary, in my appearance it will gradually resolve on its own over a two to three week period as the break fuses or the nerve function returns. But pain relief may help if the dog is in discomfort.

However it would be worth having your vet check your dog over if this is at all possible at the next regular consultation as you will then have the diagnosis confirmed but there would only very rarely be more serious conditions which would present like this.


Hello again Louisa,

Just a short note to thank you very much for the good rating, this is very much appreciated. I will get back in touch with you in a couple of days to check on Guinness's progress, and I should also be about for the next couple of hours today so please get straight back to me if things have changed and you want to talk things over further.

Kindest regards,


Scott Nimmo The Online Vet
Hello again Louisa,

I am just getting back in touch to see how Guinness is getting on with his painful tail.

How are things going at present?


Customer reply replied 4 years ago.
Hi Scott
Apologies I have been away with work. Guinness is still not wagging his tail as normal and dies not like us lifting his rail but otherwise he is normal. Eating, drinking, going for walks and peeing and pooing normally so we are considering leaving it another week and seeing how he is. If we do go to the vet I am not sure they can do much for him if his tail is damaged?
Many thanks
Hello again louisa,

Sorry for the delay in getting back to you, I am in a different time zone to you and have just come online first thing this morning and found your message.

Thanks for the update, while it is very encouraging that he is otherwise happy I am sorry to hear that his tail is still uncomfortable for him. If the diagnosis is a broken or traumatised tail { As seems likely } then this is in a way to be expected because it can take up to ten day for things to start to resolve.

With broken tails in most cases the vet will just give pain relief and then sit things out while natural healing takes place, normally that is all that is required. However if things are not going to plan then your next move would often be an X-ray session.