Just like people, our cats can get febrile. You will want to know exactly how high your pet’s temperature is with the best cat thermometer, so you will know when it’s time to bring him or her to the veterinarian.
However, taking your pet’s temperature can be a scary thought, especially when you’ve never done it before. Don’t fear. The only way to know for sure whether your cat has a fever is to check its temperature. The whole process should only take a few minutes, provided the cat isn’t opposing you. The normal temperature for most cats is between 100.5 and 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit or 38 and 39.2 degrees Celsius.
Standard glass human thermometers are not suitable for use on cats, because they are not built to give accurate readings of canines’ higher temperatures. They can also be dangerous if your cat suddenly reacts adversely to the process and the thermometer snaps while inside her.
Cat thermometers are described as being rectal, axillary and auricular thermometers. The accuracy of the temperature taken depends very much on the correct positioning of the thermometer, though, making the rectal option – though the least pleasant – still the most reliable of the three. Later I will tell you meaning of these entire thermometer and how they are used.
In this post, we will explore the 10 best cat thermometers (both rectal and infrared/ear) with the pros and cons of each model. Plus, we’ll also give you some tips and a guide on how to use and choose the best pet thermometer for your furry friend.
Guide on how to use Different Kinds of Thermometers
Regardless of which thermometer you use, taking your pet’s temperature may be a two-person task. One person can hug the cat to provide comfort and restraint simultaneously. Cats can be held in the lap with one arm placed under the neck holding the head snug against your body. The other arm can be placed around the abdomen to keep the pet still.
When using a digital thermometer, the cat may stand up. When a rectal thermometer is inserted, a standing cat will likely sit down on the thermometer. It’s best to lie the pet down on its side before inserting a rectal thermometer.
The rectal thermometer will usually be the cheapest and is the most traditional option. It’s wise to have a friend or family member whom the dog likes to help with the process, as he may struggle. Although not a difficult task to accomplish, taking your pet’s temperature rectally is best performed with two people. Have your pet either in a standing position or lying on its side. Talk to him in a calm and soothing voice.
If you are using a digital thermometer follow the instructions of the model. If you are using a traditional mercury thermometer, you will have to shake it to let the mercury settle. You will also want to lubricate the unit with petroleum jelly.
Now, lift your pet’s tail and insert the unit as per its instructions, or with the mercury kind, insert it by gently twisting and pushing it from one to three inches depending on your dog’s size.
Every thermometer is different, so again, read those instructions on the model you choose, or with the traditional mercury thermometers, you will have to wait about two minutes to get an accurate reading.
Once your thermometer has taken a reading, wipe it clean.
Axillary thermometer takes reading from the dog’s armpit. They’re a fair option for cats that won’t allow rectal temperatures to be taken but will not offer as precise a reading.
Infrared or Ear or Auricular Thermometers
Auricular temperature readings are taken from the ear canal. As they use an infrared beam to measure the temperature by bouncing off the cat’s eardrum, which is a fair way down the ear, you will need to buy a thermometer specifically designed for cats for this purpose. Ones suitable for use in humans will not have a suitably long probe. This makes them the most expensive of the three options, but many owners may prefer this to causing their cat any distress by attempting rectal measurements.
The accuracy of the temperature taken depends very much on the correct positioning of the thermometer, though, making the rectal option – though the least pleasant – still the most reliable of the three.
The common features that a best cat thermometer should have are as follows:
- Taking a reading should be as fast as possible, to avoid upsetting your pet.
- The thermometer should be easy to clean, for hygiene reasons. It must be capable of being disinfected thoroughly before each use and afterwards as well, so that viruses, germs, and bacteria are not transmitted onward.
- Accuracy, of course, is a critically important feature. This usually eliminates older thermometers and makes digital thermometers the best choice. Older style, analog ones tend to offer less accurate readings, and when you’re talking about the difference between less than one degree in terms of sickness and health, results need to be as exact as possible.
Durability may also be a factor for you if you want to use the thermometer frequently, in the long term, and/ or are in the canine business – a breeder or groomer, for instance.