Fever in Dogs

The causes and treatments of a dog’s fever.


Infectious diseases: Pneumonia, meningoencephalitis and other disorders caused by viral infections (parvovirus, distemper, parainfluenza, adenovirus-1 or adenovirus-2). Bacterial infections (leptospirosis, nocardiosis, other secondary infections), fungal infections (coccidioidomycosis, histoplasmosis, aspergillosis), aspiration pneumonia (due to vomiting, cleft palate, improperly administered oral medication or force-feeding, megaesophagus, enlargement/dysfunction of the esophagus), enteritis, bacterial prostatitis, prostatic abscesses, mastitis (mammary gland infection), or metritis (infection of the uterine lining).

Nutritional/Metabolic: Puerperal tetany (low blood calcium level in females that have recently whelped).

Parasites/Parasite-borne diseases: Borreliosis (Lyme disease), Rocky Mountain spotted fever, ehrlichiosis, salmon poisoning disease (a bacterial disease contracted by eating salmon, trout, or Pacific giant salamanders parasitized by flukes that carry the infective organism).

Tumors: In kidney, prostate, or malignant lymphoma (lymph nodes).

Toxicity: Metaldehyde (slug bait).

Immune-mediated disorders: Idiopathic polyarthritis or immune-mediated meningitis.

Drug reactions: Aspirin, chlorpheniramine (large amounts), methamphetamine, or certain cancer chemotherapy protocols (vincristine, L-asparaginase, cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, prednisone).

Endocrine disorders: Pyometra (uterine infection).

Miscellaneous: Heat stroke.

What to do: If your dog’s fever is over 103.5o or is accompanied by serious signs of illness (vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, collapse, etc.), call your veterinarian or emergency clinic immediately. Otherwise, call your veterinarian during regular office hours to make an appointment for diagnosis and treatment. If you don’t know what to do, contact your veterinarian or emergency clinic.

Disclaimer: DogChannel.com’s Dog Medical Conditions are intended for educational purposes only. They are not meant to replace the expertise and experience of a professional veterinarian. Do not use the information presented here to make decisions about your dog’s ailment. If you notice changes in your dog’s health or behavior, please take your pet to the nearest veterinarian or an emergency pet clinic as soon as possible.

Have a health question about your dog? Ask our 
vet expert or ask other dog owners on our forums.

Article Categories:
Dogs · Health and Care