Review Article| Volume 50, ISSUE 4, P769-788, July 2020

Feline Chronic Pain and Osteoarthritis

Published:April 27, 2020DOI:


      To read this article in full you will need to make a payment

      Purchase one-time access:

      Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
      One-time access price info
      • For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
      • For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'

      Subscribers receive full online access to your subscription and archive of back issues up to and including 2002.

      Content published before 2002 is available via pay-per-view purchase only.


      Subscribe to Veterinary Clinics: Small Animal Practice
      Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
      Already an online subscriber? Sign in
      Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect


        • Roy M.
        • Piche M.
        • Chen J.-I.
        • et al.
        Cerebral and spinal modulation of pain by emotions.
        Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2009; 106: 20900-20905
        • Melzack R.
        • Katz J.
        Wiley Interdiscip Rev Cogn Sci. 2013; 4: 1-15
        • Mathews K.
        • Kronen P.
        • Lascelles D.
        • et al.
        Guidelines for recognition, assessment and treatment of pain: WSAVA Global Pain Council.
        J Small Anim Pract. 2014; 55: E10-E68
        • Monteiro B.
        • Lascelles B.D.X.
        Assessment and recognition of chronic (maladaptive) pain.
        in: Steagall P.V.M. Robertson S.A. Taylor P.M. Feline anesthesia and pain management. 1st edition. Wiley/Blackwell, Hoboken (NJ)2017: 241-256
        • Klinck M.P.
        • Troncy E.
        The physiology and pathophysiology of pain.
        in: Duke-Novakovski T. de Vries M. Seymour C. BSAVA manual of canine and feline anaesthesia and analgesia. BSAVA, Gloucester, UK2016: 97-112
        • Mobasheri A.
        • Batt M.
        An update on the pathophysiology of osteoarthritis.
        Ann Phys Rehabil Med. 2016; 59: 333-339
        • Enomoto M.
        • Mantyh P.W.
        • Murrell J.
        • et al.
        Antinerve growth factor monoclonal antibodies for the control of pain in dogs and cats.
        Vet Rec. 2019; 184: 23
        • Bennett D.
        • Morton C.
        A study of owner observed behavioural and lifestyle changes in cats with musculoskeletal disease before and after analgesic therapy.
        J Feline Med Surg. 2009; 11: 997-1004
        • Lascelles B.D.X.
        Feline degenerative joint disease.
        Vet Surg. 2010; 39: 2-13
        • Lascelles B.D.X.
        • Henry J.B.
        • Brown J.
        • et al.
        Cross-sectional study of the prevalence of radiographic degenerative joint disease in domesticated cats.
        Vet Surg. 2010; 39: 535-544
        • Hardie E.M.
        • Roe S.C.
        • Martin F.R.
        Radiographic evidence of degenerative joint disease in geriatric cats: 100 cases (1994-1997).
        J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2002; 220: 628-632
        • Clarke S.P.
        • Bennett D.
        Feline osteoarthritis: a prospective study of 28 cases.
        J Small Anim Pract. 2006; 47: 439-445
        • Clarke S.P.
        • Mellor D.
        • Clements D.N.
        • et al.
        Prevalence of radiographic signs of degenerative joint disease in a hospital population of cats.
        Vet Rec. 2005; 157: 793-799
        • Godfrey D.R.
        Osteoarthritis in cats: a retrospective radiological study.
        J Small Anim Pract. 2005; 46: 425-429
        • Slingerland L.I.
        • Hazewinkel H.A.W.
        • Meij B.P.
        • et al.
        Cross-sectional study of the prevalence and clinical features of osteoarthritis in 100 cats.
        Vet J. 2011; 187: 304-309
        • Monteiro B.P.
        • Steagall P.V.
        Chronic pain in cats: Recent advances in clinical assessment.
        J Feline Med Surg. 2019; 21: 601-614
        • Arendt-Nielsen L.
        • Nie H.
        • Laursen M.B.
        • et al.
        Sensitization in patients with painful knee osteoarthritis.
        Pain. 2010; 149: 573-581
        • Knazovicky D.
        • Helgeson E.S.
        • Case B.
        • et al.
        Widespread somatosensory sensitivity in naturally occurring canine model of osteoarthritis.
        Pain. 2016; 157: 1325-1332
        • Schnabl E.
        • Bockstahler B.
        Systematic review of ground reaction force measurements in cats.
        Vet J. 2015; 206: 83-90
        • Monteiro B.P.
        • Klinck M.P.
        • Moreau M.
        • et al.
        Analgesic efficacy of tramadol in cats with naturally occurring osteoarthritis.
        PLoS One. 2017; 12: 1-13
        • Guillot M.
        • Taylor P.M.
        • Rialland P.
        • et al.
        Evoked temporal summation in cats to highlight central sensitization related to osteoarthritis-associated chronic pain: A preliminary study.
        PLoS One. 2014; 9: e97347
        • Guillot M.
        • Moreau M.
        • Heit M.
        • et al.
        Characterization of osteoarthritis in cats and meloxicam efficacy using objective chronic pain evaluation tools.
        Vet J. 2013; 196: 360-367
        • Monteiro B.P.
        • Klinck M.P.
        • Moreau M.
        • et al.
        Analgesic efficacy of an oral transmucosal spray formulation of meloxicam alone or in combination with tramadol in cats with naturally occurring osteoarthritis.
        Vet Anaesth Analg. 2016; 43: 643-651
        • Lascelles B.D.X.
        • Findley K.
        • Correa M.
        • et al.
        Kinetic evaluation of normal walking and jumping in cats, using a pressure-sensitive walkway.
        Vet Rec. 2007; 160: 512-516
        • Addison E.S.
        • Clements D.N.
        Repeatability of quantitative sensory testing in healthy cats in a clinical setting with comparison to cats with osteoarthritis.
        J Feline Med Surg. 2017; 19: 1274-1282
        • Gruen M.E.
        • Alfaro-Córdoba M.
        • Thomson A.E.
        • et al.
        The use of functional data analysis to evaluate activity in a spontaneous model of degenerative joint disease associated pain in cats.
        PLoS One. 2017; 12: 1-23
        • Lascelles B.D.X.
        • Hansen B.D.
        • Thomson A.
        • et al.
        Evaluation of a digitally integrated accelerometer-based activity monitor for the measurement of activity in cats.
        Vet Anaesth Analg. 2008; 35: 173-183
        • Lascelles B.D.X.
        • Hansen B.D.
        • Roe S.
        • et al.
        Evaluation of client-specific outcome measures and activity monitoring to measure pain relief in cats with osteoarthritis.
        J Vet Intern Med. 2007; 21: 410-416
        • Klinck M.
        • Rialland P.
        • Guillot M.
        • et al.
        Preliminary validation and reliability testing of the Montreal Instrument for Cat Arthritis Testing, for use by veterinarians, in a colony of laboratory cats.
        Animals. 2015; 5: 1252-1267
        • Benito J.
        • Hansen B.
        • Depuy V.
        • et al.
        Feline musculoskeletal pain index: responsiveness and testing of criterion validity.
        J Vet Intern Med. 2013; 27: 474-482
        • Klinck M.P.
        • Gruen M.E.
        • del Castillo J.R.E.
        • et al.
        Development and preliminary validity and reliability of the montreal instrument for cat arthritis testing, for use by caretaker/owner, MI-CAT(C), via a randomised clinical trial.
        Appl Anim Behav Sci. 2018; 200: 96-105
        • Gruen M.E.
        • Griffith E.H.
        • Thomson A.E.
        • et al.
        Criterion validation testing of clinical metrology instruments for measuring degenerative joint disease associated mobility impairment in cats.
        PLoS One. 2015; 10: e0131839
        • Guillot M.
        • Moreau M.
        • D’Anjou M.-A.
        • et al.
        Evaluation of osteoarthritis in cats: novel information from a pilot study.
        Vet Surg. 2012; 41: 328-335
        • Piccione G.
        • Marafioti S.
        • Giannetto C.
        • et al.
        Comparison of daily distribution of rest/activity in companion cats and dogs.
        Biol Rhythm Res. 2014; 45: 615-623
        • Gruen M.E.
        • Dorman D.C.
        • Lascelles B.D.X.
        Caregiver placebo effect in analgesic clinical trials for cats with naturally occurring degenerative joint disease-associated pain.
        Vet Rec. 2017; 180: 473
        • Enomoto M.
        • Lascelles B.D.X.
        • Gruen M.E.
        • et al.
        Development of a checklist for the detection of degenerative joint disease-associated pain in cats.
        J Fel Med Surg. 2020;
        • McMillan F.D.
        Quality of life in animals.
        J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2000; 216: 1904-1910
        • Freeman L.M.
        • Rush J.E.
        • Oyama M.a.
        • et al.
        Development and evaluation of a questionnaire for assessment of health-related quality of life in cats with cardiac disease.
        J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2012; 240: 1188-1193
        • Lascelles B.D.X.
        • Dong Y.H.
        • Marcellin-Little D.J.
        • et al.
        Relationship of orthopedic examination, goniometric measurements, and radiographic signs of degenerative joint disease in cats.
        BMC Vet Res. 2012; 8
        • Finan P.H.
        • Buenaver L.F.
        • Bounds S.C.
        • et al.
        Discordance between pain and radiographic severity in knee osteoarthritis.
        Arthritis Rheum. 2013; 65: 363-372
        • Yarnitsky D.
        • Granot M.
        • Nahman-Averbuch H.
        • et al.
        Conditioned pain modulation predicts duloxetine efficacy in painful diabetic neuropathy.
        Pain. 2012; 153: 1193-1198
        • Edwards R.R.
        • Dolman A.J.
        • Martel M.O.
        • et al.
        Variability in conditioned pain modulation predicts response to NSAID treatment in patients with knee osteoarthritis.
        BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2016; 17: 284
        • Monteiro B.
        • Steagall P.V.M.
        • Lascelles B.D.X.
        • et al.
        Long-term use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs in cats with chronic kidney disease: from controversy to optimism.
        J Small Anim Pract. 2019; : 1-4
        • Monteiro B.
        • Steagall P.V.
        Antiinflammatory drugs.
        Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract. 2019; 49: 993-1011
        • Guedes A.G.P.
        • Meadows J.M.
        • Pypendop B.H.
        • et al.
        Evaluation of tramadol for treatment of osteoarthritis in geriatric cats.
        J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2018; 252: 565-571
        • Klinck M.P.
        • Monteiro B.P.
        • Lussier B.
        • et al.
        Refinement of the Montreal instrument for cat arthritis testing, for use by veterinarians: detection of naturally occurring osteoarthritis in laboratory cats.
        J Feline Med Surg. 2018; 20: 728-740
        • Guedes A.G.P.
        • Meadows J.M.
        • Pypendop B.H.
        • et al.
        Assessment of the effects of gabapentin on activity levels and owner-perceived mobility impairment and quality of life in osteoarthritic geriatric cats.
        J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2018; 253: 579-585
        • Chew D.J.
        • Buffington C.A.T.
        • Kendall M.S.
        • et al.
        Amitriptyline treatment for severe recurrent idiopathic cystitis in cats.
        J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1998; 213: 1282-1286
        • Kruger J.M.
        • Conway T.S.
        • Kaneene J.B.
        • et al.
        Randomized controlled trial of the efficacy of short-term amitriptyline administration for treatment of acute, nonobstructive, idiopathic lower urinary tract disease in cats.
        J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2003; 222: 749-758
        • Kraijer M.
        • Fink-Gremmels J.
        • Nickel R.F.
        The short-term clinical efficacy of amitriptyline in the management of idiopathic feline lower urinary tract disease: a controlled clinical study.
        J Feline Med Surg. 2003; 5: 191-196
        • Kremer M.
        • Salvat E.
        • Muller A.
        • et al.
        Antidepressants and gabapentinoids in neuropathic pain: Mechanistic insights.
        Neuroscience. 2016; 338: 183-206
        • Gruen M.E.
        • Thomson A.E.
        • Griffith E.H.
        • et al.
        A feline-specific anti-nerve growth factor antibody improves mobility in cats with degenerative joint disease-associated pain: a pilot proof of concept study.
        J Vet Intern Med. 2016; 30: 1138-1148
        • Rausch-Derra L.C.
        • Rhodes L.
        Safety and toxicokinetic profiles associated with daily oral administration of gapriprant, a selective antagonist of the prostaglandin E2EP4 receptor, to cats.
        Am J Vet Res. 2016; 77: 688-692
        • Arzi B.
        • Mills-Ko E.
        • Verstraete F.J.M.
        • et al.
        Therapeutic efficacy of fresh, autologous mesenchymal stem cells for severe refractory gingivostomatitis in cats.
        Stem Cells Transl Med. 2016; 5: 75-86
        • Lötsch J.
        • Weyer-Menkhoff I.
        • Tegeder I.
        Current evidence of cannabinoid-based analgesia obtained in preclinical and human experimental settings.
        Eur J Pain. 2018; 22: 471-484
        • Deabold K.A.
        • Schwark W.S.
        • Wolf L.
        • et al.
        Single-dose pharmacokinetics and preliminary safety assessment with use of cbd-rich hemp nutraceutical in healthy dogs and cats.
        Animals. 2019; 9
        • Wypij J.M.
        • Heller D.A.
        Pamidronate disodium for palliative therapy of feline bone-invasive tumors.
        Vet Med Int. 2014; 2014
        • Ellis S.L.H.
        • Rodan I.
        • Carney H.C.
        • et al.
        AAFP and ISFM feline environmental needs guidelines.
        J Feline Med Surg. 2013; 15: 219-230
        • Dantas L.M.S.
        • Delgado M.M.
        • Johnson I.
        • et al.
        Food puzzles for cats: Feeding for physical and emotional wellbeing.
        J Feline Med Surg. 2016; 18: 723-732
        • Heath S.
        • Wilson C.
        Canine and feline enrichment in the home and kennel: A guide for practitioners.
        Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract. 2014; 44: 427-449
        • Eccleston C.
        • Palermo T.M.
        • Williams A.C.
        • et al.
        Psychological therapies for the management of chronic and recurrent pain in children and adolescents.
        Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2014;
        • Kroon Van Diest A.M.
        • Powers S.W.
        Cognitive behavioral therapy for pediatric headache and migraine: why to prescribe and what new research is critical for advancing integrated biobehavioral care.
        Headache. 2019; 59: 289-297
        • Gourkow N.
        • Phillips C.J.C.
        Effect of cognitive enrichment on behavior, mucosal immunity and upper respiratory disease of shelter cats rated as frustrated on arrival.
        Prev Vet Med. 2016;
        • Marques V.I.
        • Cassu R.N.
        • Nascimento F.F.
        • et al.
        Laser acupuncture for postoperative pain management in cats.
        Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2015; 2015
        • Suresh S.
        • Wang S.
        • Porfyris S.
        • et al.
        Massage therapy in outpatient pediatric chronic pain patients: do they facilitate significant reductions in levels of distress, pain, tension, discomfort, and mood alterations?.
        Paediatr Anaesth. 2008; 18: 884-887
        • Machin H.
        • Kato E.
        • Adami C.
        Quantitative sensory testing with Electronic von Frey Anaesthesiometer and von Frey filaments in nonpainful cats: a pilot study.
        Vet Anaesth Analg. 2019; 46: 251-254
        • Adami C.
        • Lardone E.
        • Monticelli P.
        Inter-rater and inter-device reliability of mechanical thresholds measurement with the Electronic von Frey Anaesthesiometer and the SMALGO in healthy cats.
        J Feline Med Surg. 2018; (1098612X1881342)
        • Lynch S.
        • Savary-Bataille K.
        • Leeuw B.
        • et al.
        Development of a questionnaire assessing health-related quality-of-life in dogs and cats with cancer.
        Vet Comp Oncol. 2011; 9: 172-182
        • Freeman L.M.
        • Rodenberg C.
        • Narayanan A.
        • et al.
        Development and initial validation of the Cat HEalth and Wellbeing (CHEW) questionnaire: a generic health-related quality of life instrument for cats.
        J Feline Med Surg. 2016; 18: 689-701
        • Gruen M.E.
        • Griffith E.
        • Thomson A.
        • et al.
        Detection of clinically relevant pain relief in cats with degenerative joint disease associated pain.
        J Vet Intern Med. 2014; 28: 346-350
        • Zamprogno H.
        • Hansen B.D.
        • Bondell H.D.
        • et al.
        Item generation and design testing of a questionnaire to assess degenerative joint disease-associated pain in cats.
        Am J Vet Res. 2010; 71: 1417-1424
        • Benito J.
        • DePuy V.
        • Hardie E.
        • et al.
        Reliability and discriminatory testing of a client-based metrology instrument, feline musculoskeletal pain index (FMPI) for the evaluation of degenerative joint disease-associated pain in cats.
        Vet J. 2013; 196: 368-373
        • Tatlock S.
        • Gober M.
        • Williamson N.
        • et al.
        Development and preliminary psychometric evaluation of an owner-completed measure of feline quality of life.
        Vet J. 2017; 228: 22-32
        • Klinck M.P.
        • Frank D.
        • Guillot M.
        • et al.
        Owner-perceived signs and veterinary diagnosis in 50 cases of Feline osteoarthritis.
        Can Vet J. 2012; 53: 1181-1186
        • Noble C.E.
        • Wiseman-Orr L.M.
        • Scott M.E.
        • et al.
        Development, initial validation and reliability testing of a web-based, generic feline health-related quality-of-life instrument.
        J Feline Med Surg. 2019; 21: 84-94
        • Noble C.
        • Scott E.
        • Nolan A.M.
        • et al.
        Initial evidence to support the use of a generic health-related quality of life instrument to measure chronic pain in cats with osteoarthritis.
        Vet Comp Orthop Traumatol. 2018; 31: A0012