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Why Do Boston Terriers Shake? Stress Symptoms & Treatment

If you’ve ever been around Boston Terriers before you may have noticed that these dogs will shake or shiver quite often.

This can be perfectly normal behavior for them as it is normally caused by nervousness, anxiety, or just simply feeling cold. Even other breeds of dogs, especially smaller and short-haired dogs will often shake.

Let’s take a look at why your Boston Terrier may be shivering.

What Are The Main Causes of Shaking?

  • Feeling Cold – Due to their thin and short coat, they tend to not tolerate the cold as well as bigger and thicker coat breeds. This will cause them to shiver unknowingly due to their body responding to the cool air.
  • Anxiety/Nervousness – Smaller dogs like Boston Terriers often suffer from separation anxiety and nervousness. They usually get very close to one or two people and will generally become anxious when the owner leaves, causing shaking or shivering.
  • Stress – Sometimes dogs will be stressed, although it may not be the same stress you and I have but they will experience stress every once and awhile. One way Boston Terriers deal with stress is to simply shake or shiver. It is just a response kinda how humans may have an increase in blood pressure.
  • Excitement – Dogs tend to get excited pretty easy as I am sure you have noticed. When dogs do get excited they can do several things such as barking, jumping, urinating, and yes even shivering or shaking. The best way to help this is to keep greetings calm and short to prevent them from getting too excited.

When Should You Worry?

The good news is that it’s fairly easy to tell when your Boston Terriers shaking is dangerous. They will often have extreme fatigue, heavy breathing, and simply not acting right.

If the shaking is accompanied by any of those stress symptoms you may want to call or visit your veterinarian for further investigation.

Another reason to be worried is if the shaking is something that has just started happening, which could indicate something is wrong.

What Could Cause The Bad Shaking?

  • Eating something toxic such as bad mushrooms, exotic plants, prescription pills, or even sugar-free gum.
  • Severe Illness such as an Infection, Sepsis is a dangerous infection that gets into the blood and causes high fever, low blood pressure, shaking/shivering, fatigue, and not acting right.
  • Epilepsy. This is a seizure disorder that could cause shaking depending on the type of seizure.
  • Some kidney disorders can cause uncontrollable shaking and shivering which needs to be treated by your vet.
  • Nausea – some dogs will shake or tremor when nauseated.

How To Prevent My Boston Terrier From Shaking?

If you are truly worried about your Boston Terrier shaking, don’t be. Like I explained above, most of the time it’s a normal response for this type of dog and they aren’t really bothered by it, however, there are some treatment options where you can reduce the shaking.

Things You Can Do To Reduce Shaking

  • Prevent your dog from getting too cold. This can be done by investing in a dog coat (on Amazon) which you can get for cheap on Amazon.
  • Try some separation anxiety medication. I use these Hemp Calming Treats (on Amazon) whenever my Boston terrier is stressed or overly anxious which I find works really well.
  • Simply reducing overall stress in your dog’s life will help with the shaking as well.


Overall, just remember that Boston Terriers will shake every once and a while and that most of the time there is nothing to worry about. I have a Boston Terrier and he shakes probably once a day which is nothing to be concerned about.

Thanks for reading my post on Why Do Boston Terriers Shake. I hope you have learned something.

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