Vet Blog

Why Is Your Dog Crying and Shaking?

March 18, 2019

No loving owner likes to see their pet unwell and out of character but seeing your dog crying and shaking can be particularly distressing.

Shaking and trembling are actually fairly normal canine behaviors, and there can be several innocent reasons why your canine pal might be shaking, including through excitement, and while playing, stretching, and drying off after a bath or a dip in your pool or nearby lake. However, when shaking is accompanied by other worrying symptoms such as crying, vomiting, fever, etc., you may want to contact your emergency vet in Gainesville, FL to see if she needs to be seen as it could indicate that she has extreme fear or an underlying medical problem.

Common Causes of Shaking in Dogs

There is a range of different medical reasons why your dog may be shaking. However, some are more common than others, including the following:

Canine Distemper

Canine distemper is a type of virus that is rare in adult dogs that have received all of their core vaccinations but can occur in puppies who are still going through their initial series of immunizations. Other symptoms that accompany shaking in cases of distemper typically include coughing, fever, and nasal discharge. Distemper must be treated quickly, or it can have serious consequences for your dog's health.


Just like us, dogs can suffer from conditions that cause seizures including epilepsy. These tend to be neurological-based disorders that are characterized by drooling, uncontrollable spasms, collapsing, and foaming at the mouth. If your dog has a seizure you should try and move objects away from her so that she doesn't hurt herself and time how long it lasts. Then get in touch with your vet in Gainesville, FL who will almost certainly want to arrange for your pet to come in and be assessed as seizures are often classified as a veterinary emergency.


There are many items that can be toxic when consumed by our dogs. Unfortunately, our canine pals often don't realize this until it is too late. Poisoning can cause many different symptoms, one of which is shaking. If she is in pain or distressed, your dog might also start whimpering and crying. If you suspect that your dog has eaten something she shouldn't, don't delay speaking to your vet immediately as urgent medical support may be needed.

Generalized Tremor Syndrome

Also known as GTS, this is a condition that is characterized by generalized tremors throughout your dog's body. Symptoms typically start to occur when between 9 months and 2 years of age, but it isn't known exactly what causes it and why some dogs develop it and others don't.

Fear and Anxiety

Our dogs can become upset, anxious, and even fearful just as easily as we can and sometimes this manifests as crying, shaking, and excessive vocalization. If you can you need to try and determine what is causing your dog to be so upset as you may be able to make changes that alleviate the problem and put her at ease. It could be something like fireworks going off or a trip in the car if she finds traveling difficult. However, if you aren't sure what is causing her distress or you need more advice on how to help and support your dog, your veterinarian should be your first point of contact.

If you think that your dog needs medical attention, don't hesitate to speak to our experienced and highly knowledgeable veterinary team at our animal hospital in Gainesville, FL today. Please call (352) 372-8387 with any questions.

Don't have time to bring your fur baby in for a visit? Ask us about our drop off services. Let your pet join our team for the day for extra cuddles and love and pick them up at your convenience! Ready to book? Book your drop-off appointment now!