Bee Sting Safety: Dogs

You may not notice the moment your pet is stung by a bee, but you can look out for signs and take immediate action. This is especially important if your dog is allergic to bee stings, just as humans can be, or if he’s been stung multiple times. Here’s what to know.

What are the symptoms?
Dogs are most often stung on the face or paws, so check for any swelling or enflamed areas. This can be more difficult on long-haired dogs, so also watch for excessive licking or biting as this can direct you to a possible injury.

Signs of an allergic reaction include rapid breathing, diarrhea, drooling, weakness, vomiting, or pale gums. These signs are typically apparent within the first 15 minutes of a bee sting, so pay close attention to any unusual behavior. Call your veterinarian right away if you believe your dog may be having an allergic reaction.

What to do?
First, remain calm. If your dog is not displaying the symptoms described above, remove the stinger by pulling it with your fingers or by scraping it out with a credit card from below the poison sac. Do not use tweezers or attempt to squeeze the stinger out as this can actually push more poison into your dog’s body. Rinse the affected area with water and apply ice to cool the wound.

When should I call my veterinarian?
If your pet is stung in the mouth or throat or you notice any signs of an allergic reaction, immediately contact your veterinarian or call us at 415-554-3030.

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