Why Does My Dog Shake?

The wet dog shake

If your dog shakes and trembles for no apparent reason, you may just brush it off. Maybe you think they’re shrugging off water after they’ve splashed in the rain, or perhaps they’re just feeling a bit cold throughout the winter.

Because dogs can’t explain to us their emotions or wellbeing, it is important to look out for signals in their body language, which indicate how they are feeling.

This may be in the form of shaking or shivering, however, there are many reasons why your dog may be shaking and some certain signs to look out for to protect your pets’ health.

We share the reasons why dogs shake and the warning signs to look out for:


Just like their human owners, dogs can suffer from anxiety and other stress-related illnesses that affect their body and well-being.

Loud noises like fireworks, feeling intimidated by other dogs and general feelings of fear could be the reason as to why your dog is trembling, and an increased amount of adrenaline rushing through your pet’s body could be causing them to panic.

Muscle Weakness and Pain

Another reason why your dog may be shivering is that their muscles aren’t strong enough to hold their weight. This is usually recognisable as the shaking begins when the dog has been standing for a long period of time, and disappears once they’ve had some rest.

This can also be painful for your dog. Whether they’re experiencing pain in the back, neck or abdomen; shaking can be a common symptom.


There are certain household and garden items that can be poisonous to your pet and give them toxic shock, and one of the early symptoms of this condition is convulsions or minor muscle spasms.

Specific doses of nicotine, poisonous plants, household chemicals and even chocolate can cause high levels of toxicity in your pet’s body, and should be treated by a vet immediately to prevent any further illness.

A dog may shake in excitement - but it could be something more serious


When your dog shakes, it doesn’t always have to be a cause for concern. In fact, it could be your pet’s way of showing you that they’re excited to see you!

You may have noticed your dog trembling when they’re ready set off for a walk, or even when you head through the door after a long days’ work. This is usually nothing to worry about, and is just your pet’s way of showing you how they feel.

Things to Look Out For

Although shaking isn’t always a cause for concern, there are certain health issues and diseases that it can signal. Some examples of these are inflammatory brain diseases, seizure disorders and chronic kidney failure and can be recognised by the accompanying symptoms:

1. Increased urination

2. Extreme thirst

3. Little or no appetite

If you are concerned about the health of your dog and the amount of time they spend shaking, always consult your vet and follow their advice. We offer dog insurance that can cover medical costs which will help your pet to become happy and healthy again in no time!

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