What to Do if Your Dog Is Shaking

Many dogs tremble or shake, even when it’s not cold outside. This is especially common in small dogs like Chihuahuas. While shivering can be just a normal fact of life for some dogs, it can also be a warning sign that something is amiss. There are many different reasons that your dog could be shaking, ranging from benign to concerning. Whether or not you should seek treatment will depend on the opinion of your vet, but keep in mind that some of the reason’s dogs shiver are quite difficult to pin down. There are many different reasons that dogs shake. Let us explore some of them now, starting with the least serious explanation and moving up from there.

Cold Weather

Many dogs with thin coats or low-fat content, like Greyhounds and Dobermans, get cold easily. Even if it’s 50 or 60 degrees F outside, some dogs get chilly. Be especially cautious if it is humid or rainy, as this makes dogs feel colder. If your dog’s shaking does not stop once you’ve warmed her up, check with your vet to ensure there’s not something else going on.

Generalized Tremor Syndrome

Some small dogs “just tremble.” Anyone who has been around a few Chihuahuas or Miniature Pinschers will agree that many of these little dogs just tremble a lot. Experts have not been able to nail down exactly why, but it could be that small dogs are cold more often, they are more anxious, or another unknown reason.

Be more concerned if the trembling is a new behavior or if it accompanies other changes in your dog’s behavior. If your small dog trembles a lot, ask your vet about it. Your vet can assess muscle tone and check for other reasons your dog might be trembling. She may diagnose your dog with Generalized Tremor Syndrome (GTS), which can be treated with medications.

Sign of Muscle Weakness or Injury

Have you ever exercised so much that your muscles quiver a bit? Or noticed that a pulled muscle vibrates when you move the wrong way? The same can happen to your dogs! Quivering is a common symptom of pain, injury, or weakness. Check with your vet if shaking is limited to a given area, started after some heavy exercise, or is accompanied with a decrease in activity level. You may notice that the muscle tremor gets worse if you touch the area, attempt to stretch, or massage it, or exercise your dog. Many dogs that tremble due to pain or weakness will also appear stressed.

Fear, Excitement, or Anxiety

Strong emotions can make dogs tremble or shake. If you notice that your dog’s trembling starts and stops in specific situations like at the vet, when guests are visiting, or on walks, there is a good chance that there is an emotional reason for your dog’s shaking. Even if this is caused by excitement instead of fear, it is a good idea to get help teaching your dog to feel relaxed.

In this case, it is often best to see a Certified Dog Behavior Consultant to learn how to help your dog feel more relaxed in each situation. Skip the local obedience trainer since they’re more skilled at teaching commands than changing emotions. Your dog behavior consultant may suggest that you speak to your vet about behavioral medications for your dog if it seems like the behavior modification protocols are not helping much.

Diseases or Medical Reasons

There are a lot of scary diseases out there that can cause your dog to shake. ? Distemper, neurological diseases, kidney disease, and seizure disorders as well as many, many more diseases can all cause shaking in dogs. Keep careful track of any other changes in your dog’s behavior, activity level, and appetite. Pay close attention to the frequency, odor, and consistency of your dog’s stool and urine. If your dog’s shaking is relatively new and accompanied by other symptoms, get a full veterinary workup as soon as possible. There may be bloodwork and other tests involved, but it is worth it for your pup’s health!

While some of the diseases that cause shaking are treatable or manageable, others, like distemper, are very serious and often fatal. Vaccinate your dog to help prevent distemper. Good preventative care can also stave off kidney disease. The causes of seizure disorders and neurological disease can be harder to pin down.Treatment

Treatment for a shaking dog will vary based on the underlying cause. For a dog that's cold or excited, treatment may be as simple as warming her up or calming her down. If that is not helping, it's probably time to see a vet.

Calming Supplements

Calming supplements can help many an anxious dog during stressful times. These can be particularly useful during firework season and throughout thunderstorms. Travel and Calming Strips are chicken flavored quick dissolving supplements with natural ingredients that help dogs with nervous, anxious, or aggressive behaviors feel calm and comfortable. These calming treats contain 20mg of Tryptophan per strip and L-Theanine that helps stimulate brain waves to promote relaxation with no drowsy effect. Each strip contains Melatonin and Chamomile, helping with hyperactive & aggressive behavior, which act as a relaxer that can help reduce jumping, biting, and barking from dogs that display aggressive or hyperactive tendencies. This Calming Strip supplement may encourage natural anti-anxiety relief for a thunderstorm, fireworks, car rides, or separation anxiety. These treats contain an advanced complex of proven ingredients such as Ashwagandha Root and L-Tryptophan to help minimize outbursts, while Tryptophan reduces scratching, restlessness, paw licking, and striping. All for the affordable low cost, with a price at only $6.99!

Supplementing Aging Joints

Our Hip & Joint Strips are pet supplements specifically formulated with a blend of MSM, Glucosamine, and Chondroitin that may reduce & relieve aches, soreness, inflammation & arthritis for any dog. This dog supplement contains Ingredients that may also promote immune and cardiovascular support to make sure your pet feels better than ever before. This strip comes in a mouthwatering chicken flavor that your four-legged companion will adore. Nothing better than a healthy pet that loves their feel-good treat! At Petstrips, we understand how much your pet’s health and wellness means to you, so we manufacture our strips in facilities that are NSF and GMP-certified in the USA. We also keep our cost affordable, with a price at only $8.99 to supply your pet for a full month!

When to contact a Vet

There are a few warning signs that let us know it’s time to go see a vet sooner rather than later. Call your vet right away if:

  • Your dog’s shaking is accompanied with other symptoms, like lethargy, anxiety, diarrhea, limping and vomiting
  • Your dog’s trembling is interfering with normal behavior like playtime or sleeping.
  • Your dog starts shivering after ingesting something unusual.
  • Your dog appears distressed when he’s shaking. Pay special attention to “calming signals” such as stress panting, lip licking, or ears that are pulled far back.

If your dog is sick or injured, the treatments will likely require veterinary help. Your vet may prescribe rest, massage, or even surgery—all dependent on the underlying cause of your dog's shaking. Depending on what your dog ate, a dog that's shaking due to toxins might just need to vomit. Be sure to speak to a poison control center to double-check.

How to Prevent Shaking in Dogs

Again, the specific prevention will depend on the cause of your dog's shivering. Keeping your dog warm, relaxed, up-to-date on preventative care, well-exercised, and away from toxic "snacks" can all help keep her from shaking. That said, certain breeds or individuals might be more prone to the mysterious "Generalized Tremor Syndrome," which has no known way to treat or prevent. It’s important to get help if your dog’s shaking is accompanied by behavior changes, other symptoms, or started after eating something new. While shivering can just be a simple case of Generalized Tremor Syndrome or cold, it can also be a symptom of serious diseases or even anxiety.

Leave a comment

#shopify-section-product-template{margin-top: 7em;}