When your dog suddenly starts limping noticeably, it's important that you call us right away to schedule an appointment. Because dogs are good at compensating for low-grade chronic pain, you may not become aware of the limping until the underlying condition has progressed to a more acutely painful stage. Serious limping and lameness indicates an animal in real distress, and we need to determine what's creating it and alleviate the discomfort. Contrary to popular belief, pets rarely cry when in pain. The most common signs of pain in pets are limping or stiffness, decreased energy/activity, decreased social behavior, and decreased appetite. Shaking, aggression, and excessive licking or scratching of a specific area are other common signs.