1. Establishing a Baseline
All pets are special in their own way, but did you know that EVERY pet has a unique baseline temperature? Knowing this is critical to figure out what’s normal versus abnormal for the pet. If you can establish a baseline, it’s much easier to determine if a rise in temperature is just from stress or excitability rather than an actual illness. This comes in handy especially when they’re at the vet!
2. Detecting a Fever
We’ve all had fevers. Whether it was spring fever, Bieber fever, or an actual spike in temperature. Luckily for us, these eventually pass, but for pets it’s not so simple. If you’ve ever taken your pet to the vet before, the first thing you’ll notice them do is take their temperature. This is because it’s nearly impossible to tell if your pet has a fever without a thermometer. If a true fever is present, this could mean your pet is fighting an infection or some other serious health concern, so detecting one quickly and accurately is crucial.
3. Post-Operative Monitoring
It’s important to keep a close eye on your pet, but even more so after an operation. By regularly tracking your pet’s temperature after a surgery, you’ll be better able to track their recovery too. The first sign of a complication or infection is usually a rise in body temperature so the sooner you detect it, the faster the vet can fix it.
4. Detecting Overheating
On a summer’s day, the only hot dog you should have is for lunch! ...Sorry we had to. But for real, you’d be surprised how quickly a dog or cat can overheat even if they’re just romping around the yard. Being able to monitor your pet’s temperature during exercise or playtime, especially during the hotter months, will allow you to know when it’s time to cool them down and potentially save their lives!
When a woman is ready to give birth, it’s probably safe to say that everyone around her will know about it. With dogs, however, they often go for the surprise route. Luckily for us, their body temperature gives it away by increasing about 24 hours before “whelping” (dog lingo for giving birth) so you can be ready when the time comes. It’s good to monitor temperature throughout this process and during nursing too so you can make sure mom isn’t developing mastitis, a common disorder of the milk ducts. And don’t forget to take the temperature of the babies, in between snuggle sessions of course!
6. Seizure Monitoring
Many people may not know this but one of the biggest threats to your beloved fur baby during a seizure is actually hyperthermia (or overheating). All that movement and brain activity raises their core body temperature and can be dangerous if not monitored. That’s why taking your pet’s temperature right after an episode will help you decide how much they need to be cooled down keep them safe.
7. Post-Vaccination Monitoring
Last but not least, shots. All of us can admit that they have their pros and cons. Most of the time they can make us feel good and even immune to certain illnesses or diseases. But on some occasions, things can go downhill pretty quickly. That’s why you should always monitor your pet for a fever after a vet visit. It’s normal for them to have a mild fever the following day, but if you notice it dramatically increase or last longer than 48 hours, they may be having an adverse reaction and you should call your vet again.