02353-A: Characterization of Naturally-Occurring Neuropathic Pain in Dogs

Grant Status: Closed

Grant Amount: $14,752
Paulo V Steagall, DVM, MSc, PhD; University of Montreal
November 1, 2017 - October 31, 2018


Breed(s): Miniature Schnauzer
Research Program Area: General Canine Health
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Clinical experience demonstrates that canine patients commonly suffer from neuropathic pain and little is known to address this issue. The researchers will investigate different tools for the recognition, diagnosis and treatment of neuropathic pain using a multidisciplinary approach. A two-phased study will include client-owned healthy dogs as controls and dogs with naturally-occurring neuropathic pain (Neuropathic Group-NG). In a prospective, randomized, masked clinical trial using appropriate inclusion and exclusion criteria, dogs in the NG group will be assigned to receive treatment with a drug for neuropathic pain (gabapentin), or gabapentin in combination with an anti-inflammatory drug (meloxicam) in a cross-over design (dogs will receive both treatments during the study). Placebo will be administered between treatments to assess placebo effect; additional analgesics will be administered if needed. Quality of life, pain scores, client-specific outcome measures, biomarkers of inflammation and quantitative sensory testing will be evaluated and compared with controls for observation of treatment effect, and blood concentrations of gabapentin will be measured. This multidisciplinary research may have a timely, immediate impact in veterinary medicine, canine health and welfare by providing important insight into diagnosis and therapeutic options for neuropathic pain.


Ruel, H. L., Watanabe, R., Evangelista, M. C., Beauchamp, G., & Steagall, P. V. (2018). Feasibility and reliability of electrical, mechanical and thermal nociceptive testing and assessment of diffuse noxious inhibitory control in dogs. Journal of Pain Research, 11, 2491–2496. https://doi.org/10.2147/JPR.S164483

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