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What’s a Dog’s Normal Temperature?

December 31, 2009 By: admin Category: All Sick Dog Blog Posts, Dog Fevers, Dog Symptoms, Ear Thermometers for Pets, General Dog Health, Pet Products, Taking a Dog's Temperature

Pet Temp Instant Ear Thermometer. Available for $49.99 at PetSmart. Click photo to learn more or purchase.

If a pet owner is wondering, ‘Is my dog sick?” one of the first steps is to take the dog’s temperature. But many dog owners don’t know what’s a normal temperature for a dog. So if you’re wondering, “What is a normal temperature in a dog?” read on!

What’s a Normal Temperature for a Dog? – Dog Fevers vs. Normal

A dog’s normal body temperature is much higher than a human’s – 100.5º to 102.5º Fahrenheit is a normal dog temperature when the reading is taken rectally.

Pet owners can also take a dog’s temperature using an ear thermometer. While, pet ear thermometers are much easier to use (and they’re versatile, since they can be used for dogs, cats, and small animals too), readings do tend to be a bit less precise. So if using a pet ear thermometer, the dog’s normal range is between 100º and 103º Fahrenheit.

Whatever the method, a dog’s temperature is below 100º or above 103º, it’s time to visit the veterinary clinic for an exam. A dog with a fever may be sick with a virus, or he may be suffering from an infection or any number of other ailments. Illnesses and medical conditions (i.e. a disease affecting the circulatory system) can cause the dog to have a temperature that’s lower than normal.

What’s a Dog’s Normal Temp? – Determining a Dog’s Temperature Baseline

Unfortunately, this normal temperature range in dogs can complicate matters. If a dog’s normal temperature is 100.5º, then a temperature of 102.5º may mean that this dog is sick. In other dogs, 102.5º is normal. Unlike humans, “normal” varies among individuals.

For this reason, it’s important to determine the dog’s baseline when he’s healthy. Take the dog’s temperature at various points during the day over the course of several days. Once a couple dozen temperature readings have been taken, calculate the average to determine the dog’s baseline.

To ensure accurate readings, avoid taking the dog’s temperature after exercise (the temperature will be higher than normal) and avoid taking the dog’s temperature after sleeping (the dog’s body temperature is lower than normal during and immediately following sleep.)

(Pictured: Pet Temp Instant Ear Thermometer, $49.99 at PetSmart. Click photo to learn more or purchase.)

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Is My Dog Sick?

February 17, 2009 By: admin Category: All Sick Dog Blog Posts, Dog Illnesses and Diseases, Dog Symptoms, General Dog Health, Veterinarians and Veterinary Clinics

Lethargy and sleeping are symptom of illness in a dog. Learn how to tell if a dog is sick.

This article will answer questions like, “Is my dog sick?” “How do I check my dog’s gums?” “How can I tell if my dog is sick?” “What’s a dog’s normal temperature?” and “Why is my dog shivering?”

Checking if a dog’s nose is wet or cold will not tell you if your dog is sick. This is actually an old wives tale!

Instead, dog owners should perform a quick, basic physical examination to look for symptoms of a sick dog.

How to Check a Dog’s Vital Signs

Start by checking the dog’s gum color by lifting up the dog’s lips. Normal gum color in dogs ranges from a bubblegum pink to a darker salmon color. Abnormal gums in a dog will appear brick red, pale white, yellow or blue/grey.


Next, take the dog’s temperature rectally. A normal temperature in a dog is between 100.5 and 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit.

Abnormal gum color and abnormal body temperature are symptoms of a sick dog.

A sick dog may also show other symptoms of illness, including shivering and trembling, lethargy and excessive sleeping, and refusal to eat and drink.

Should I Take My Dog to the Vet?

If a dog has abnormal gum color and the dog has a fever or abnormal body temperature, combined with other symptoms like a dog who is not eating, it’s time to visit the veterinary clinic!

For more on how to tell if a dog is sick, check out Is My Dog Sick? along with Why is My Pet Shivering and Why Isn’t My Dog Eating?


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