"Is my dog sick?" TAKE THE DOG'S TEMPERATURE: Begin by taking the dog's temperature rectally. EXAMINE THE DOG'S GUMS: Gums should be pink. IS THE DOG LETHARGIC? IS YOUR DOG VOMITING? IS YOUR DOG SHIVERING, DROOLING OR PANTING? IS YOUR DOG NO LONGER ENJOYING HIS FAVORITE ACTIVITIES? IS YOUR DOG COUGHING OR SNEEZING? IS YOUR DOG LOSING WEIGHT? IS YOUR DOG SUDDENLY HAVING ACCIDENTS INDOORS? If you think your dog may be sick, monitor his symptoms every two hours. Avoid taking a dog's temperature right after activity like a walk or jog, as this will raise body temperature and give abnormally high readings. Also avoid taking a dog's temperature right after he's awakened from a nap, as body temperature drops slightly during sleep, giving abnormally low readings. Avoid examining a dog's gums right after he wakes up from sleep, as they will be paler than normal for a few minutes after awakening. The sooner a dog is examined and treated by a veterinarian, the better.