How to Spot a Dog Fever: Signs and Symptoms

Dogs are known to be man’s best friend, and as a responsible pet owner, it is crucial to take care of your furry friend’s health. However, like humans, dogs can also develop a fever. A dog’s body temperature is slightly higher than that of humans, and their regular body temperature ranges from 100.5 to 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit. Anything above this temperature indicates a fever. If you suspect that your dog has a fever, it’s essential to know the signs and symptoms to take necessary action.

Signs and Symptoms of Dog Fever

Knowing the signs and symptoms of dog fever can help you identify if your dog has a fever quickly.

Increased Temperature

The typical body temperature of a dog ranges between 100.5 and 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit. If your furry friend’s temperature increases above this range, they might have a fever. Do note that taking your dog’s temperature is a bit different from taking a human temperature. Heat the thermometer tip in warm water or use a digital thermometer, and insert the thermometer into the dog’s rectum for a minimum of one minute.

Loss Of Appetite And Lethargy

One common symptom of a fever in dogs is a loss of appetite and lethargy. If you notice that your dog is avoiding meals and has no energy, then they might have a fever.

Vomiting And Diarrhea

Vomiting and diarrhea are also some less common symptoms of a fever in dogs. If your dog is frequently vomiting or having an upset stomach, it’s best to get them checked by a vet.

Coughing And Sneezing

Just like humans, dogs can also experience coughing and sneezing if they have a fever. If your dog is coughing or sneezing more than usual, it is advisable to contact your vet.

Pawing At Face And Mouth

A fever can cause inflammation, which can result in your dog pawing at their face and mouth, which can be a sign of discomfort.

When To Visit The Vet

If you notice any of the above symptoms in your dog, it’s best to take them to a vet as soon as possible for a checkup. While mild fevers are not cause for concern, high fevers can indicate an underlying condition that requires medical attention.

How To Treat Your Dog’s Fever

After diagnosing your dog with a fever, the next course of action is treatment. Here are a few ways to treat your furry friend’s fever:


Your vet might prescribe medication to reduce your dog’s fever, such as anti-inflammatory medication. Ensure to follow your vet’s dosage instruction for safe use. DO NOT use human medication and over-the-counter drugs to treat your dog.

Cool Water

You can use cool water to keep your dog’s body temperature down by placing a cool towel on their forehead, applying cool water to their paws, and misting them with cool water. Avoid using cold water or ice as it can lead to further temperature drops and cause complications.

Rest and Isolation

Rest is essential for a speedy recovery, and when your dog has a fever, it’s crucial to give them a quiet and comfortable space to rest. During this time, it’s also advisable to limit their contact with other pets to prevent the spread of infections.

Preventing Fever In Dogs

Just like with humans, prevention is better than a cure. Here are some tips to help prevent fever in dogs:


Keep your dog’s vaccinations up to date to help prevent the outbreak of contagious diseases that can cause fevers.


Clean your dog’s water and food bowls daily, observe a regular grooming routine, and clean up their feces immediately to prevent the spread of diseases that can cause fever in dogs.

Regulating Temperature

Dogs are susceptible to overheating, especially during the warmer months. Provide a cool resting area, shade and ensure they have plenty of water.

Regular Checkups

Regular visits to the vet can help detect early signs of illnesses that can cause fever in dogs, ensuring that your furry friend stays healthy.


Spotting the signs and symptoms early and seeking professional treatment promptly can help prevent complications and promote a speedy recovery. As a responsible dog owner, it’s crucial to keep an eye on your furry friend’s health, and if you suspect that they have a fever, take them to the vet immediately.

FAQs About Dog Fevers

  • Q: What is a normal temperature for a dog?
  • A: A dog’s normal body temperature is between 100.5 and 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Q: How can I tell if my dog has a fever without a thermometer?
  • A: You can tell if your dog has a fever by touching their ears, paws or the underside of their stomach. If it feels too hot, it’s likely that your dog has a fever.
  • Q: Can human medicine help treat a dog’s fever?
  • A: NO. Human medication is not safe for use in dogs and can lead to serious complications, so always follow your vet’s instructions.
  • Q: How long does it take for a dog fever to go away?
  • A: The recovery from a fever depends mainly on the underlying condition causing it, the severity of the fever, and the treatment administered. Mild fevers can go away in a few days, while severe ones may require more time and additional treatments.


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