How to Comfort a Dog with a Fever Using Home Remedies
Fever is common in both humans and dogs. We get them when we have a slight infection or inflammation. After a few days, as long as we manage the fever correctly and the infection is not that severe, it goes away. We have the means to take care of ourselves.
But how about if your pet’s temperature spikes? He won’t exactly walk on all four legs and go to the medicine cabinet. You have to know how to comfort a dog with fever and possibly treat it at home.
What to Know About Fever in Dogs
Dogs have a higher normal temperature than humans. Dogs’ normal temperature ranges from 100 to 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit. Anything above 102.5F is considered a fever.
For you to tell for sure, you can make use of a thermometer that’s specially made for pets. There are two kinds that are the most convenient to use – digital rectal thermometers and ear thermometers.
When you have a digital rectal thermometer, it might be unpleasant for your pet because you’d have to insert it in his anus. However, it does give a pretty accurate reading. What you do is lubricate the thermometer, then gently insert it into your dog’s rectum. Hold it still for some time (duration depends on the instructions of the thermometer). It’s going to beep which means that it’s ready to be taken out.
Ear thermometers, on the other hand, measure a dog’s temperature by reading the infrared heat waves that are emitted around your pooch’s eardrum. It’s less invasive, but it still delivers an accurate reading. If you live alone, it’s best to add an ear thermometer to your medicine cabinet because it is less work.
You can go for the digital approach or the old school approach where you feel your doggie’s nose. If it’s wet and cold then there’s a possibility that he is sick.
Fever in dogs is commonly accompanied by other common signs which you should keep a watchful eye for. See if your pet’s eyes are red, ears and nose are warm, if it’s shivering, coughing, or vomiting.
If it’s a yes for most of the symptoms above, then he might have a slight infection or inflammation in his body. It can be manageable at home. One of the most important things to remember when treating a dog with fever at home is never give paracetamol that’s made for humans. As a general rule, never give your dog medication designed for the human body. It can potentially have adverse side effects.
Instead of human medication, go for more natural alternatives such as applying a damp drying coat or towel. Make sure that he is in a cool spot with enough shade. Supply him with cool water or feed him ice cubes. That’s all that you can do. If the fever lasts for more than 48 hours or if his temperature reaches 106F or higher, go to the vet right away.
When a Vet Visit is Necessary
Knowing how to comfort a dog with a fever is helpful, but if his symptoms are still present after you have given palliative care, then the infection he is experiencing is much worse than you thought. Your dog might be suffering from more concerning health issues like pancreatitis, leptospirosis, or meningitis, to name a few.
Whatever his diagnosis is, your vet will likely introduce antibiotics and hook your dog up to an IV. To be on the safe side, if your dog hasn’t gotten better after 24 hours and has exhibited other symptoms like weakness, nose bleeding, loss of appetite, and so on, don’t wait another day. Have your pet diagnosed and treated as soon as possible.