If you have ever bathed your puppy, you may have noticed that they sometimes shiver after getting out of the water. This can be a concerning sight for any pet owner, as you may wonder if your pup is cold, sick, or stressed. In this article, we will explore some of the possible reasons why your puppy shivering after bath, and what you can do to help them feel more comfortable and warm.
Why Does Your Puppy Shiver After a Bath?
There are several factors that can cause your puppy to shiver after a bath. Some of the most common ones are:
– Wet fur and evaporation: When your puppy’s fur is wet, it loses its insulating properties and allows heat to escape from their body. As the water evaporates from their fur, it also creates a cooling effect that lowers their body temperature. This triggers a natural response in your puppy to shiver, which is a way of generating heat through muscle contractions.
– Sensitivity to cold: Some puppies are more sensitive to cold than others, depending on their breed, coat type, and age. Puppies with short coats or lacking undercoats may feel cold more intensely than those with thick or double coats. Puppies that are very young or very old may also have less ability to regulate their body temperature and cope with cold stress.
– Anxiety or stress: Bathing can be a stressful experience for some puppies, especially if they are not used to it or if they have had negative associations with it in the past. Some puppies may shiver due to anxiety or fear of the water, the noise of the faucet or shower, the handling by the owner, or the unfamiliar environment. Shivering can also be a sign of excitement or anticipation for some puppies who enjoy baths or expect a reward afterwards.
– Hypothermia: In rare cases, may be your puppy shiver after a bath because they have developed hypothermia, which is a dangerous condition where their body temperature drops below normal levels. This can happen if the water is too cold, if the bath is too long, if the ambient temperature is too low, or if your puppy has other health issues that affect their thermoregulation. Hypothermia can cause serious complications such as organ failure, coma, or death if left untreated.
How To Stop Your Puppy From Shivering After a Bath?
If your puppy shiver after a bath, there are some steps you can take to help them warm up and feel more comfortable. Here are some tips to follow:
– Check the temperature of the bath water: Before you put your puppy in the bath, make sure that the water is lukewarm and not too hot or too cold. You can use a thermometer to measure the water temperature, or test it with your hand or elbow. The ideal water temperature for bathing your puppy is between 37°C and 39°C (98°F and 102°F). Avoid using water that is colder than 32°C (90°F) or hotter than 43°C (110°F), as this can cause discomfort or harm to your pup.
– Create a calm atmosphere: To reduce your puppy’s anxiety or stress during bath time, try to create a calm and positive atmosphere. Choose a quiet and familiar place to bathe your pup, such as your bathroom or kitchen. Avoid loud noises or distractions that may scare or excite your pup. Use gentle and reassuring words and gestures to communicate with your pup and praise them for their good behavior. You can also use treats, toys, or games to make bath time more fun and rewarding for your pup.
– Wrap your puppy in a cozy towel: After you finish bathing your pup, wrap them in a soft and warm towel and gently rub their fur to remove excess water and generate heat. Use a second clean towel if the first one gets too wet. Pay attention to sensitive areas such as their face, ears, and paws, and dry them thoroughly. You can also cover your pup with a blanket if the external temperature is lower than the water temperature.
– Use a blow dryer on low heat: If your puppy is comfortable with the sound of a blow dryer, you can use this tool to dry their fur faster and provide extra warmth. Make sure to use a blow dryer that is designed for pets or has a low heat setting. Hold the blow dryer at least 15 cm (6 inches) away from your pup’s fur and move it constantly to avoid burning or overheating their skin. Start from their back and work your way down to their legs and tail. Avoid blowing air directly into their face, ears, eyes, nose, or mouth.
– Communicate with your pup: One of the best ways to help stop your puppy shivering after a bath is to communicate with them and show them that you care. Talk to your pup in a soothing and cheerful voice and tell them how good they are and how much you love them. Give them lots of cuddles and kisses and let them snuggle with you on the couch or in bed. You can also play with them or give them their favorite toy or treat to distract them from the cold and make them happy.
When To See A Vet?
Most of the time, puppy shivering after a bath is normal and harmless for puppies, and it will stop once they are dry and warm. However, sometimes it can be a sign of something more serious that requires veterinary attention. You should see a vet if:
– Your puppy’s shivering lasts for more than an hour after a bath
– Your puppy’s shivering is accompanied by other symptoms such as fever, vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, limping, etc.
– Your puppy has an injury, an infection, or an underlying health condition that may cause them to shiver
– Your puppy’s shivering is severe or uncontrollable
Shivering after a bath is a common and usually harmless behavior in puppies, but it can also indicate a problem if it is excessive or persistent. By following the tips above, you can help your pup warm up and feel more comfortable after a bath. However, if your pup shows signs of hypothermia, such as lethargy, weakness, confusion, or pale gums, you should seek immediate veterinary attention. Remember to always monitor your pup’s body temperature and behavior after a bath and consult your vet if you have any concerns.