Dog Behavior, Dog Health, Dogs

Why My Dog Is Shaking? 7 Possibilities & Ways To Deal With It

Why my dog is shaking?

You may be wondering why my dog is shaking? Or, when you should take action? Here are 7 common reasons why dogs get shaky and how to deal with it.

Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

Why Is My Dog Shaking & How To Deal With It

There are many different reasons that your dog could be shaking. Sometimes, it is difficult to pin down the reasons for “why my dog is shaking?”. Read on to learn more about this.

why my dog is shaking

Reason No. 1 – Cold

The simplest answer is that they’re cold. Be careful during the winter months with dogs being outside, especially little dogs. Smaller dogs may be more likely to shake in the cold because they lose heat more quickly. 

How to deal with it?

Keeping your dog warm and dry with a warm sweater could be a good way to prevent hypothermia. Giving them a good warm dog bed near a heating vent can do just the trick on a cold night.

Reason No. 2 – Distress, anxiety, or fear

Thunderstorms, fireworks, travel, or any type of environmental change can cause dogs anxiety or fear. Dogs experiencing high levels of stress can also exhibit shaking. Although this type of shaking is nothing to worry about, stress isn’t any better for your dog than it is for you.

How to deal with it?

Help your dog feel happier by removing the cause of stress, or by helping them to manage their stress levels. If your dog is prone to shaking during thunderstorms, try to help them stay calm by masking the sounds of thunder. You can give your dog a warm place to go to during stress or anxiety. Or, simply just be present and brush its hair to let it know you’re there for it. If the shivering problems become worsen, you should seek advice from an accredited behaviorist to help you.

Reason No. 3 – Excitement

Often, a dog shivers when it’s in a state of excitement. The reason behind it is unclear. There is no harm in this type of shaking, it will mostly stop after your dog calms down.

How to deal with it?

Though you can ignore this type of shivering in dogs, dog behavior expert warns that your pups can get overexcited and hyperactive if owners didn’t stop them. Keep things a little more relaxed when they are this excited.

Reason No. 4 – Old Age

As dog ages, there’s not uncommon for weakening leg muscles to develop tremors. If you found your dogs shaking particularly in leg areas, it could be a result of loss of muscle mass. It could also be a result of their nervous system deteriorating. 

How to deal with it?

Dog supplements for joint care and muscle care could be a good way to ease the shaking. Don’t overtax your pet by having them do long walks or exercise. This might create further damage to your dog’s muscles which could lead to more severe shivering in the dog.

Reason No. 5 – Generalized Tremor Syndrome (GTS)

This may show up as localized tremors or full-body shaking. GTS is an immune-mediated issue and might also exhibit other symptoms, such as high-stepping, an uncoordinated gait, and abnormal eye movements. 

How to deal with it?

Be sure to consult your veterinarian if you think this could be the cause of your dog’s shaking. Upon diagnosis of GTS, your vet will usually treat your dog with prednisone.

Reason No. 6 – Poisoning

A dog’s body may produce the stress hormone in excess as a trauma response to the poisoning. This can cause inexplicable shaking. Other signs of poisoning may include drooling, vomiting, and seizures. 

How to deal with it?

If you suspect that your dog has gotten poisoning, call your vet and the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center immediately. If the poison was ingested, get a sample of the poison’s container so your veterinarian can determine the best treatment.

Reason No. 7 – Seizure Disorders

Idiopathic epilepsy—a genetic disorder is the most common type of seizure disorder that could happen to a dog. Unfortunately, the exact cause of which is unclear. Affected dogs can appear completely normal between seizures.

How to deal with it?

Be sure to call your vet immediately if you suspect your dog is seizing. For seizing, your dog will lose control of its body and sometimes loss of consciousness.

Final Thoughts

Dogs may shake and tremble when in excitement, pain, old age, or even feeling cold. These shouldn’t worry you too much. But there are times when your dog shaking needs immediate attention. It’s best to reach out to your vet if you’re wondering, “Why is my dog shaking so much?” It is always better safe than sorry.

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