Home > Dogs > How to Take a Dog’s Temperature without Using a Thermometer?

How to Take a Dog’s Temperature without Using a Thermometer?

Dogs can have many health problems, just like humans. Although the organisms of these animals have certain similarities to those of people, the difference is that they are more sensitive to certain factors.

When you put your hand on your pet and notice that it is hot, you might think it is due to the heat, but this is not always the case. Many people might be surprised to learn that dogs can also get a fever.

How to Take a Dog's Temperature without Using a Thermometer

In fact, this is one of the most common symptoms of many diseases these animals can suffer from. Keep in mind that fever is not the only cause of elevated temperatures in canines.

The first thing you would think to do when your dog’s body temperature is high is to use a thermometer. However, you may not have that useful tool at the moment. In this article, we will teach you how to take your pet’s temperature without a thermometer.

What Is the Normal Body Temperature of a Dog?

Before teaching you how to take a dog’s body temperature without a thermometer, it is necessary to know the appropriate body temperature range for an animal of this type.

The first thing to know is that a dog’s standard temperature range is slightly different than a human’s. For example:

  • The normal body temperature of a human varies between 36.1 °C (97 °F) and 37.2 °C (99 °F)
  • The normal body temperature of a dog varies between 38 °C (100.5 °F) and 39.2 °C (102.5 °F)

As we can see, the standard temperature of a dog is slightly higher than that of a human being. When your pet’s temperature is outside this range, i.e., higher than 39.2 °C or lower than 38 °C, then you should take it to the vet as it may have a fever.

Can I Take My Dog’s Body Temperature without a Thermometer?

As we know, the best way to take the temperature is through a thermometer since this instrument gives us exact figures about our body’s temperature.

However, it is essential to know other methods to determine if our canines have a temperature outside of their standard range.

The following ways won’t tell you your pet’s exact temperature, but at least you’ll be able to determine if it’s higher or lower than normal:

Touch Your Dog’s Nose

We can often determine if a dog has a fever or some other problem by feeling its nose. If you notice that your pet’s nose is warmer than normal and has a runny nose, then it has a fever. These symptoms can also mean your dog has a nasal infection.

Remember that a warm nose does not always mean the canine has a problem. It is important that you know that the temperature of the noses of these animals fluctuates a lot depending on the climate or environment in which it is.

Check the Temperature of Your Dog’s Paws and Ears

Feel your dog’s ears or paws using your hands, cheeks, or other sensitive body parts. If you notice a high temperature in them, then it is likely that your pet has a fever. You can also determine if your dog has a fever by sticking your finger inside one of its ears.

There are times when the temperature of one ear is higher than the other. This is not normal and is most likely due to an infection in that ear.

Take a Close Look at the Armpit and Groin Areas

Generally, these areas are usually a clear indication of fever or infection when they are swollen and hot.

Carefully use your hands (as long as they are at room temperature) to feel the lymph nodes in your canine’s groin and armpits.

Why is it easy to identify high temperatures in these areas compared to other parts of the dog’s body?

The reason is that there is not much fur covering the skin in the armpits and in the groin, so it can be easily verified if the dog has a higher body temperature or not.

Look at Your Pet’s Gums

It is also possible to determine if a dog has a fever through its gums. There are two ways to know this:

  • If your canine’s gums feel dry and hot, then it is very likely that it has a fever.
  • It is also possible to tell if the canine has a fever if its gums are redder than normal.

Dry gums are common in dogs with a dental disease but if you notice this symptom in your dog without any dental problems, then take it to the vet as this could be fever and other underlying issues.

You must be very careful when taking your dog’s temperature since it could bite you if stressed or anxious.

Look for Signs of Tiredness in Your Dog

High body temperatures are not only dangerous for dogs, but low temperatures are too. That’s why it’s important to not only know when your pet is warmer than normal.

Generally, low body temperatures are related to tiredness and loss of energy. If you notice that your dog does not have enough energy to move or is shivering, put your hand on it to feel its temperature. Indeed you will feel that it is colder than normal.

These situations can become even more dangerous than high temperatures, so you should not hesitate to take your pet to the vet as soon as possible.

Shivering in a dog does not always mean that it is cold. These could be symptoms of stress and anxiety. Even so, that is something that a professional veterinarian should check and treat.

What Are the Symptoms of Canine Fever?

Sometimes you can touch your pet and feel warm, but you still don’t know that it has a fever. If you want to check that your dog has a fever, look for other symptoms such as:

  • Coughing
  • Decreased body fluids
  • Increased respiratory rate
  • Lethargy
  • Loss of Appetite
  • Nasal Discharge
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Vomiting