The compulsive shaking of a dog’s body always looks frightening. Like any abnormal or unusual conditions, dog shivering often makes pet owners panic. Dogs' body shaking can be caused by a variety of reasons – from cold weather to life-threatening conditions.
Before taking your pet to a vet, try to find out the source of the problem.
There are four main reasons for a dog to shiver uncontrollably. If you know your pooch well, finding out the true reason usually makes no trouble. Most frequently, a dog shakes because it is:
Sometimes, shivering is accompanied by other symptoms, which make it easier to understand its origin. Let’s take a closer look at each reason.
You don’t need to have a degree in medicine to see that your pup is cold. It is typical for short-haired and skinny dogs that are taken outdoors in winter.
If you are going to walk your canine at low temperatures, make sure you have warm clothes for it. Otherwise, it may catch a cold. If shivering is caused by hypothermia, it stops as soon as the dog gets to a warmer place.
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Frequently, dogs shake when they are nervous, frightened, or stressed. For example, some pups are scared of loud booms and explosions produced by fireworks. Others get nervous when they see other dogs.
Ask yourself whether or not there is a reason for your pet to feel stressed. Commonly, loving dog parents easily distinguish the source of trouble. Shivering stops as soon as this source disappears and the dog calms down.
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Sickness is a common reason for dogs shivering. The problem is that it’s hard to determine a particular source of trouble without a vet’s help. That is why, if you exclude overcooling and stress from the possible reasons of shivering, you should take the dog to a specialist as soon as possible.
If the pup is sick, body shaking is often accompanied by unusual panting, yelping, or/and increased body temperature. A tense or bloated abdomen can be a symptom of pancreatitis or problems with the digestive tract.
If you see at least one of these symptoms, you should call for medical help immediately. Also, you can temporarily relieve painful sensations by giving it one recommended dose of vet-approved pain reliever, such as Aspirin.
Injuries always cause pain, which, in turn, can cause body shaking accompanied by panting and yelping. Usually, severe traumas are seen by the naked eye. For example, an abnormally swollen leg can be a sign of a fracture or wrench.
Stiffness in movements, tense neck or changed gait can indicate a spine problem. Of course, all these symptoms are a reason for urgent hospitalization.
Dog shaking is not a pretty sight, but often, there’s no reason for panic. Before grabbing your pup and taking it to the nearest vet clinic, make sure it is not cold or scared.
Try to calm down your pet by stroking it gently and talking to it. However, if shaking is accompanied by other symptoms, such as high body temperature, abnormal body posture, excessive panting, or yelping, it’s time to call for a veterinarian.