What Is The Normal Temperature For A Dog?

So many dog owners have never thought about taking their dog’s temperature even when they suspect something might be wrong with their pet. Even experienced dog breeders are guilty of this as well, but undertaking this simple activity can tell you a few things about your dog’s general wellbeing and health. However, before checking the temperature of your furry companion, it is important to know what the normal temperature for a dog looks like.

In this piece, we will learn more about fever in dogs and how to take your dog’s temperature to confirm the state of their health.

How To Check A Dog’s Temperature

There are basically two ways to check your dog’s temperature, both of them produce accurate results and the choice of which method to use is up to you. Both methods involve the use of a thermometer but different parts of the body are required to get the normal temperature of a dog.

You can use an ear thermometer designed for dogs to check their temperature. Just put this device deep into the horizontal ear of the dog and wait till it beeps. The beeping sound is triggered after obtaining a reading that would then reveal the temperature of your dog.

The second method – which is a more intrusive one, is to use a rectal thermometer to measure your dog’s temperature. To do this, you will need to first lubricate the tip of the rectal thermometer with petroleum jelly or oil and have your dog’s tail lifted up and turned to the side. During this procedure, it is important you try as much as possible to prevent the dog from sitting down in the following events.

Initialize the lubricated rectal thermometer and push it in by about half an inch to a full inch into your dog’s anus. Hold the thermometer in there for about a minute until it beeps after obtaining a reading. While checking your dog’s temperature, be sure to keep the pet steady and don’t push the thermometer too far inside to avoid touching sensitive parts.

Normal Temperature For A Dog

The Normal Temperature For A Dog Is Close To That Of Humans

Just like their human owners that have a normal body temperature range of 36.4 to 37.6 degrees Celsius (97.6 to 99.6 degrees Fahrenheit), dogs also have a temperature range of between 37.5 to 39.2 degrees Centigrade (99.5 to 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit). This is considered the normal temperature for a dog and anything thing above this temperature range is considered high. As such, anything below it is considered to be too low.

Notwithstanding the temperature range, different factors can influence the body condition of your dog, and these circumstances may not necessarily be a cause for alarm.

Factors That May Cause Fever In Dogs

Developing a fever is part of a dog’s body mechanism for fighting off infections which could be from both internal and external sources.

For internal sources, your dog may develop a fever if it is experiencing any of the following:

  • Ongoing viral or bacterial infections

Infections such as rabies, salmonella, staphylococcus Aureus, Campylobacter, Coxiella burnetii, and several others can cause your dog to develop a high fever in response. These are some of the common infections that can affect the canines and trigger a change in the normal temperature of a dog.

  • Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs)

Just like humans, dogs can also suffer from UTIs which can equally trigger a fever. Infections such as Bacterial Cystitis, Prostatitis, Pyelonephritis, etc, can make your dog develop a fever.

  • Infected Cuts, Bite, or Scratch

Considering their sharp claws and teeth, as well as how rough they often play, scratches are common among dogs. These wounds are often not noticeable but can cause health challenges if ignored. If any of the above situations exist and is left untreated, it will cause feverish reactions in your dog.

  • Infections in Internal Organs

If your pooch has an ongoing infection in its internal organs such as the lungs, kidneys, or any other organ, the body will react to fight off the infection. Naturally, this would be accompanied by a fever as the body is fighting to ward off the infection.

  • Abscessed Tooth Infection

A tooth abscess that is not properly looked after in your dog will lead to infections, which would trigger its immune system to fight off the infection with accompanying feverish conditions.

  • Ear Infections

Infection in your dog’s ears can lead to feverish conditions, especially if it is left untreated. Asides from infections and diseases, the following factors can lead to feverish conditions in your dog:

  • Toxic Human Foods

If your dog ingests human foods that are toxic to its body system, it will trigger feverish conditions in order to ward off the effects of such ingestion.

  • Feeding on Toxic Plants

If your dog feeds on plants such as tomato, ivy, aloe vera, etc, it will trigger allergic reactions in them that may induce feverish reactions.

  • Human Drugs/Medication

If your dog gets access to your medicine cabinet and ingests some of your medications, it can prompt an allergic reaction that will be accompanied by fever. Clearly, human drugs are not meant for dogs.

  • Ingestion of Non-natural Substances

Should you be careless with substances like engine oil, antifreeze, transmission fluid, body cream, and other substances that might be harmful, your dog might find them palatable and go ahead to ingest them. Once inside the body system, these substances can lead to allergic reactions, triggering fever and altering the normal temperature of a dog.

Read Also: Can You Declaw A Dog? Why Declawing A Dog Can Be A Felony

When To Visit The Vet For Abnormal Dog Temperature

If you notice any of the following symptoms in your dog – loss of appetite, red eyes, shivering, lethargy, vomiting, warm and dry nose, coughing, etc, then it is time to pay the vet a much-needed visit.

Also, if the temperature reading of your dog is above 39.4 degrees Celsius (103 degrees Fahrenheit) then it’s best to rush down to the vet’s office to get a clear diagnosis.

As a general rule, take your dog to the vet once you notice anything is out of place. Additionally, always take care of wounds and simple infections before they get out of hand.

error: Content is protected !!