Dog’s Body Temperature: What Is Normal And What Is Not?

Dogs are just like people – they have a normal body temperature! Just like with people, if your dog’s temperature is too high or too low, it can be a sign that something is wrong.

Knowing what is normal for your dog’s body temperature can help you keep track of their health, and catch any problems early on.

Dogs have a normal body temperature that ranges from 101° to 102.5° Fahrenheit. Most veterinarians agree that if a dog’s temperature reaches 103° F or more, it is considered a fever. Above 106° F, it is considered a medical emergency, and fatal complications can potentially occur.

What Is Normal?

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A dog’s normal body temperature is anywhere between 100℉ to 102.5℉. If the body temperature goes below or above this range, it is time to get in touch with a veterinarian. You must quick action whenever the temperature fluctuates because their bodies are not as adaptive as ours and it might lead to fatal conditions if left untreated.

If a dog’s body temperature goes above 104℉ or stays below 99℉, consider both situations as emergencies and visit a pet hospital right away. It is absolutely unsafe to try and treat such situations by yourself. You must strictly avoid administering over-the-counter medications like ibuprofen or acetaminophen because they could react adversely to these medicines.

Since the cause of the elevated body temperature is not known till you visit a vet, it is best to stay away from such medication.

Symptoms And Causes

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How will you find out whether the elevated temperature of your dog may be indicative of further issues? The best way to find out will be to check its rectal temperature. This is where you need a specially designed thermometer to be used for dogs alone since normal human thermometers will not work efficiently. If the temperature does not fall within the normal range then the other symptoms to look out for will be:

  • Unexplained fatigue
  • Unusual mood
  • Disinclination towards food
  • Nausea
  • Discharge from the nose
  • Shivering

What Can You Do?

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If you have called for a doctor or the distance between your home and the hospital is more than 15 to 20 minutes, you can try bringing down your dog’s body temperature by applying cold water on his feet and around the ears. Keep tracking rectal temperature throughout the way and calm yourself down so that you can function and respond effectively.

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Pete Decker