What Causes My Dog to Shake and Tremble?

Find out the most common reasons and treatments behind dog shivering and trembling.



2 min read

Why is My Dog Shaking and Trembling?

Dogs may tremble for several different reasons. While their shivering is oftentimes harmless, it could also be a cry for help at times. That’s why it is essential to get yourself adequately informed regarding what might cause your dog to shiver and tremble, so you can detect whether there’s something for you to be worried about.

Read on for the top seven causes delineating why your dogs might be shaking, whether in cold weather or the middle of a hot, summer day:

1- Cold

Cold is the simplest reason for your dog to shiver and tremble. It is an automatic response for pets to shake in frigid environments, as it gets their blood pumping and increases body temperature. Small puppies, like Chihuahuas, are likelier to shiver due to lack of insulation and body mass.

2- Fear or Anxiety

Another common answer for ‘Why is my dog shivering?’ is that they’re in fear or anxious about something. While trembling itself is not a harmful factor, in this case, stress and fear often lead pets to suffer from other clinical diseases.

3- Excitement

Many dogs tend to shiver and tremble when they’re excited about something. There’s no likely danger they could experience due to this trembling-like behavior, and it may dial down once they calm down. However, it’s best not to appreciate this behavior to avoid long-term troubles, like discussed in the next point.

4- Attention

When you rush to your dog to comfort them every time they shiver for any reason whatsoever, they may start using that technique to grab your attention moving forward. Some dogs even start shaking intentionally when they want to gain their owner’s sympathy for getting more food.

5- Old Age

It’s common to see your dogs trembling at times when they’re getting old and losing their leg muscles. This kind of shivering can also be a sign of joint pain and arthritis.

6- Illness or Physical Pain

Shivering and trembling in dogs can be a sign that your furry pal is suffering from illness or physical pain. Distemper, inflammatory brain disease, Addison’s disease, and hypoglycemia are a few common ailments that cause your dog to shiver in response. Moreover, it’s best to check whether your dog is dealing with physical pain due to an unknown injury, as that might also be a cause for them to tremble uncontrollably.

7- Nausea or Poisoning

Like humans, dogs can also get nauseated from eating too much, motion sickness, or consumption of something toxic. Whether it is nausea or food poisoning, both of these symptoms can lead to continuous shivering and trembling in dogs at times.

While some of the mentioned causes of shaking in dogs are harmless, we recommend you to take your pet to the vet when you detect them experiencing excessive shivering and trembling!