How to Take a Dog’s Temperature and When It Is Necessary

Do you even know how to take a dog’s temperature and what is its natural temperature? It would be better to be prepared before you need it, so you can’t be surprised.

Your dog doesn’t seem very well today. Does it have a higher temperature? You are looking at it with a thermometer in your hand and thinking where you should put it. Or you may be a step ahead and speculate over the result and what temperature is even normal. To prevent such situation from happening, read the following lines and learn about the method of taking dog’s temperature, the normal value and when it is even necessary to take it.

We already know a warm muzzle is not an indicator of high temperature. Its temperature and dampness rather reflect the situation in the dog’s environment. However, if your dog seems sick, apathetic, doesn’t want to eat, vomits or has diarrhoea, it’s time for a thermometer. Another reason might be a suspicion of hyperthermia or too low temperature (hypothermia, the greatest risk is for puppies).

The normal temperature of a healthy dog is higher than the normal human temperature. So, don’t panic if it has higher values than you are used to. The temperature is okay between 37.5 and 39 ºC and it is taken in the rectum. A perfect tool is a digital thermometer with a flexible tip (e.g. a rectal thermometer for children).

For an easier introduction of the thermometer and the prevention of an undesired dog injury, you can oil the tip of the device or use any other lubricant such as vaseline or lard. It should be introduced to the depth of approximately 2 cm depending on the size of the dog. If you can ask someone for help, do it. Dogs tend to sit down with the introduced thermometer.

If the value on the display is higher than 39 ºC, visit a vet. A long-term high temperature is dangerous for dogs. Definitely don’t give your dog ibuprofen, paracetamol or any other human medication to lower the temperature!

Have you ever taken a dog’s temperature or did you take the patient straight to a vet and counted on him/her? I believe it might be particularly difficult with some non-cooperating dogs.

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