Knowing how to take dog’s temperature is vital to determine if your beloved canine is sick or not. It also lets you detect an illness early on, so prompt treatment will be initiated. This will prevent his condition from getting worse. While you can rely on a thermometer to check your pooch’s temperature, it’s best you know how to check even without one.
7 Ways To Take Dog Temperature Manually
What Is Dog Temperature?
Before going on with how to take a dog’s temperature, it is important to note that a fever in a dog can be dangerous if it’s not treated immediately.
The average normal body temperature for dogs is between 101 and 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit, compared to just 97.6 to 99.6 degrees Fahrenheit in humans.
The term fever pertains to the elevated body temperature, which is a normal body reaction to either an infection or an inflammation. So, here’s how to take a dog temperature without the use of a thermometer.
1. Feel Your Dog’s Paws And Ears with Back of Hand
A dog with an elevated body temperature will usually feel hot on their paws and ears. You can measure the temperature by using your body parts that are more sensitive to heat, such as the back of the hands and cheeks. Use the back of your hands and feel his paws or ears. If the temperature is way hotter or warmer than yours then it can be an indication that he is not feeling well.
2. Feel The Dog’s Nose
The dog’s nose may become warm or cold, or dry or wet, depending on the environmental situation they are in. For instance, it is normal for the dog’s nose to become dry when exercising or laying out under the sun. However, in some cases, the dog’s nose can become dry because of dehydration, which is dangerous for canines.
When you feel your dog’s nose and find out that it’s warm and dry, look for accompanied greenish discharge. He may be suffering from an infection, such as an upper respiratory illness. When fever is present, he may have an inflammation or infection.
3. Feel The Groin Area And Armpits
Just like in humans, the armpits and groin areas of dogs may become warmer than the other parts of the body when there is a fever. These areas contain lymph nodes, where immune cells that fight infections reside. When there is an active infection, these lymph nodes may become filled with antibodies or immune cells, making the areas warmer than the other parts of the body. Moreover, these areas are more exposed because they lack fur, making an assessment of dog temperature easier and faster.
4. Check The Dog’s Gums
To assess dog temperature, you can check his or her gums. The gums may become warm and dry when the dog has a fever or an elevated body temperature. Take note, however, that when the dog’s gums are redder than usual, this may signal an ongoing infection, fever, and even septicemia, or infection of the blood.
5. Assess For Low Body Temperature
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Aside from fever, your dog is unwell when he has low body temperature. As the famous adage goes, “Too much of everything is bad,” when the dog temperature plunges to abnormally low levels, he may suffer from hypothermia, which is life-threatening. Check for your dog’s temperature as you would when he has a fever. Also, check for other signs such as low energy and chills.
6. Evaluate The Other Signs Of Fever
When your dog has a fever, he may manifest other signs and symptoms you can look out for. These signs and symptoms include vomiting, diarrhea, fatigue or extreme weakness, poor appetite, slugginess, and social withdrawal. These signs may tell you that your dog is sick or unwell. When he shows these signs and symptoms, it’s better to bring him to a veterinary clinic for further evaluation and treatment.
7. Observe The Dog’s Behavior And Appearance
You can tell if your dog is well or unwell based on his appearance and behavior. If your dog, who was once playful, becomes weak and sluggish, you can suspect an illness. Take note that if your dog becomes too thirsty, weak, and always sleeping, he may be dehydrated. Make him drink more fluid, or if he can’t manage to drink orally, he may need further medical assistance from a veterinarian.
Checking for dog temperature may seem easy but you need to make sure you do it properly. Here’s a video by Veterinary Network for more information:
The best way to measure dog temperature is to feel some parts of his body with your hands. It’s important that you know how to distinguish a fever from a healthy temperature. Keep in mind that elevated dog temperature may signal an ongoing inflammation or infection. Early detection means early treatment, so always watch out for the signs and symptoms of an illness to prevent it from progressing or worsening.
Do you have the same concern with your pet dogs? Let us know in the comments section below how you discovered it and what you did to treat it.