Dog Illness Symptoms that Cause Shaking

Discover the medications, conditions and dog illness symptoms that include shaking and tremors. Because there are different levels of shaking, it's important to pay close attention to the severity and if the shaking is full body or specific to one area.

Head Shaking Involves an Ear Infection-Related Dog Illness

Dogs that have an ear infection will repeatedly shake their head and dig at their ears. If your dog is shaking his head constantly, an ear infection is likely. A foul odor coming from the ears is usually a yeast infection and can be treated with an ear wash containing boric acid and anti-fungal ointments. Bacterial infections need antibiotic medications.

Full Body Shaking and Seizures

Dogs can have seizures for a number of reasons. Rabid dogs will suffer from seizures. If your pet has been bitten by a wild animal or bat and you are uncertain of the date of your dog's last rabies shot, rabies is a possibility. You must quarantine the animal and contact animal health officials.

Canine epilepsy is another possibility. Epilepsy occurs in young dogs, usually up to the age of five. Watch for the early signs such as pacing, excess drooling and extreme restlessness. After this, the dog may collapse and suffer from involuntary shaking. Contact your vet if your dog has had a seizure.

Chills and Fevers that Appear with a Dog Illness

A sick dog often develops a fever. During this fever, chills are common and your dog will shiver. The best thing to do for a dog that is feverish is to keep him in a draft-free, warm room. Offer plenty of liquids and even a few treats like ice cubes or frozen fruit juice. If the fever lasts more than 24 hours, contact your vet.

Pay Attention to the Location of the Shaking

A dog illness that features shaking as a key symptom can be diagnosed by the area of the shaking. For example, if a dog loses coordination in the back limbs and not the front, kidney failure or spine problems can be to blame.

Pay close attention to where the shaking occurs. This can help your veterinarian come up with possible dog illnesses to get a proper diagnosis and treatment plan into action.

Be Careful Giving Over-the-Counter Medications

Because some dog illness treatments are the same as medications used by humans, people have a tendency to save money but using their leftover medications on their pets. A dog with congestive heart failure is often prescribed digoxin.  Digoxin pills are already tiny, so to come up with the correct dosage for a dog is difficult. With an overdose of digoxin shaking, tremors, nausea, diarrhea and weakness are common.

Shaking and Tremors Caused by Exposure to Insecticides

One of the leading dog illness problems involves over-the-counter flea medications and insecticides. Overexposure to these insecticides frequently causes tremors in dogs, but pet owners figure the flea medication or shampoo they just used was meant for dogs, so they overlook the potential of those insecticides as the problem. Ingredients in many insecticides affect the function of nerves and muscles leading to shaking and tremors.