Bees sting Oscar

Oscar was out mid-November enjoying the summer sun (like many of us humans!) and decided to start chasing some bees, as many dogs do. His owner Rosie became immediately alerted to Oscar's change of demeanour; he suddenly stood very still, was lethargic and had some tremors in his hind legs.  Rosie knew that this could be a medical emergency, and took him to receive veterinary attention immediately. 

Pets, just like humans can have a range of reactions in response to bee stings. From a swollen, puffy face, itchyness and excessive salivation to difficulty breathing or a stiff neck. There are a few things you can do if you suspect your pet has been stung by a bee and you can localise the sting:

  1. Carefully remove the sting and bathe the area in cool water.
  2. Restrict exercise to decrease blood flow to the area and thus decrease pain and swelling. 
  3. Observe your pet carefully. If your pet is uncomfortable or you notice severe facial and/or neck swelling, difficulty breathing, excessive salivation, collapse or a significant number of lumps in the skin, your pet may be experiencing an allergic reaction. Treat this situation as a medical emergency and see your veterinarian immediately.

At the emergency centre, due to Oscar's clinical signs and blood results, the vets were concerned that Oscar was having an anaphylactic response to the bee sting which can happen in some pets (just like humans) and can be quite serious and sometimes fatal.  Fortunately with Oscar, his reaction was unlikely to be anaphylactic in nature and he steadily improved and made a full recovery. His owner is now equipped with prescription medication in the event that Oscar has a similar reaction to bees.

We will be having a Pet First Aid seminar in the coming months to prepare you and other pet owners to feel more confident and be prepared in the face of an emergency with your pet. The seminar is free to attend and there are some fantastic resources. It is always a popular seminar so if you’re interested, call us today to register your interest and put your name on the list!

For more information on bee stings, speak to our veterinary nurses. We also have an article on bee stings and pets which is worth a read.