Taking a cat’s temperature

Cats, like humans, can have fevers for a variety of reasons, including infections and diseases, injuries and certain medications.




Some might suggest you use a rectal thermometer on a cat. Frankly, most of us would sooner wrestle a pig than insert a thermometer into a cat’s anus. Fortunately, technology has helped us out, and you can now buy an ear thermometer for pets online or at pet supply stores. It has a probe that is inserted gently and very briefly into the ear.


A cat’s normal temperature is from 100.4 to 102.5 degrees F. It’s a good idea to take your cat’s temperature when he or she seems to be feeling normal. That will give you a baseline by which to judge whether the temperature is elevated when the cat is showing signs of not feeling good.


Signs might include loss of appetite, lethargy, shivering, rapid respiration or symptoms of an illness like diarrhea, sneezing or vomiting. If these symptoms are present, whether the cat has a fever or not, it’s best to make an appointment with your veterinarian.


“Sleepy Cat” by Victoria.Heck, CC BY-SA 3.0

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