When you are worried your dog may be sick, it is helpful to know what your dog’s normal vital signs are so you can recognize when they are abnormal. When handlers call me about their working dogs, some of the most important information can be gained by knowing what your dog’s temperature, heart rate, gum colour and respiratory pattern are like. This will help me assess over the phone how urgent or emergent your situation may be. Similarly, this can help your local veterinarian or the ER clinic if they are triaging you over the phone.
Adult German Shepherd (Large Breed Dog) Vital Signs
|Heart Rate||Breathing Rate||Temperature||Gum Colour|
|Normal at rest||60-80 beats per minute||10-20 breaths per minute||37.5-39C||Bubble gum pink (may only have black pigmentation in some dogs)|
|Normal when active/excited||60-140 beats per minute||Panting||38-40C||Pink, might be more sticky|
|Abnormal Values||Anything over 80/min at rest, or over 140/min with activity||Panting or over 20 breaths per min when at rest, or breathing with abdomen at any time||Over 39.5C when at rest, or over 40.5C when active. Less than 37C at any time.||White, blue, purple, red gums|