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My Dog Got Stung by a Wasp, What Should I Do?

 
By María Besteiros, Expert veterinary assistant and canine/feline hairdresser.. September 14, 2020
My Dog Got Stung by a Wasp, What Should I Do?

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Dogs are very curious and playful animals. They're willing to put their nose just about anywhere in order to discover something new. This may lead them to some dangerous scenarios. One of them being getting stung by a wasp.

In this AnimalWised article, we're going to explain what you should do if your dog gets stung by a wasp. We'll go through the symptoms, dangers of wasp stings, what you should do and more!

Wasp stings in dogs

Wasp stings are poisonous. These stings are painful and when provoked, wasps can sting various times. This can make our dog's condition much worse. The location of the sting is also very important, as a sting on their throat or tongue can be more dangerous and will need immediate help from a veterinarian.

Dogs usually get stung on their nose or face as they are very curious and use their nose to discover new things. Getting stung on their nose is particularly painful. However, the most dangerous is getting stung inside their mouth or throat as it can swell up and close your dog's throat and block their airway.

Symptoms of a wasp sting in dogs

There are different types of wasps that can potentially sting your dog, especially if your dog is exposed to the open air during the warmer months of the year. Getting stung by a wasp is also more likely in curious dogs that like to sniff, touch or even bite new things they encounter.

However, these curious dogs can in fact get stung by other insects, such as getting stung by a bee or getting bit from a spider. To differentiate different types of insect bites we must rely on the clinical symptoms. With that being said, some of these symptoms overlap with other health issues. This is why it's always best to observe the symptoms but take them to the veterinarian as soon as possible so that they can better examine our dog's condition.

The most common symptoms for a dog that got stung by a wasp are:

  • Inflammation of the area of the bite
  • Pain
  • Redness of the affected area
  • Itching
  • Stings on the face, which are the most frequent, can cause considerable swelling around the face
  • Those that occur inside the mouth, due to swelling, can cause serious respiratory problems
  • Anaphylactic shock if the dog receives multiple stings or is allergic to wasps
My Dog Got Stung by a Wasp, What Should I Do? - Symptoms of a wasp sting in dogs

Allergic reaction in dogs due to a wasp sting

Although wasp stings in dogs usually only causes local symptoms in the area where they have been stung, some dogs may experience more symptoms due to an allergic reaction. This reaction is called anaphylactic shock and it will need immediate veterinary care.

In addition to the local symptoms mentioned, dogs that experience anaphylactic shock will also go on to suffer generalized symptoms. This can occur immediately after getting stung or within a few hours. The symptoms that should concern us indicate hypersensitivity to the venom and are a reason to go immediately to the veterinary center. These symptoms are as follows:

  • Nervousness
  • Hypersalivation
  • Vomiting and diarrhea
  • Trouble breathing
  • Stridor-like breath sounds from swelling of the larynx
  • General weakness
  • Seizures
  • Collapse in the most serious cases.
  • Without treatment, the dog falls into a coma and dies

What to do if my dog has been bitten by a wasp?

Now that you know whether or not your dog has been stung by a wasp, what should you do?

If it's a simple sting, you can try to remove the sting with your finger nails. Avoid using tweezers as it may inject more venom out of the sting and into your dog. Once the sting is out, your dog will experience mild pain and discomfort. Your veterinarian can recommend certain painkillers so that they can cope with it until they've healed. This shouldn't take more than a couple of days.

On the other hand, if your dog is also experiencing other symptoms due to their allergies, they will need veterinary assistance as soon as possible. Especially if they have been stung on their tongue or inside their mouth or throat. In these cases, your dog will need special care as their airways may be blocked. Your veterinarian will examine and administer the correct drugs and fluids to reduce the inflammation so that your dog can breathe and recover from the anaphylactic shock.

My Dog Got Stung by a Wasp, What Should I Do? - What to do if my dog has been bitten by a wasp?

Treatment of a wasp sting in dogs

If it's a simple sting by a wasp, your veterinarian will remove the sting and administer painkillers for a couple of days so that your dog can cope with the symptoms until they are fully recovered.

If your dog has anaphylactic shock, the treatment will involve more medical procedures. This will depend on your dog's condition and the veterinarian's diagnosis. In these cases, remember to bring them to the veterinarian as soon as you can.

Home remedies for wasp sting in dogs

At home it is only possible to treat wasp stings in dogs that have caused no more than a mild local reaction. If the affected part is the face, the inside of the mouth or the dog shows some sign compatible with anaphylactic shock, we cannot limit ourselves by only treating our dog at home. It is essential that we contact the veterinarian.

If your dog has gotten stung by a wasp on their body, simply remove the sting and use these home remedies to help them cope with the pain:

  • Apply ice (with a cloth, never directly on the wound)
  • Clean wound

If the sting is mild, they should recover in a couple of days. If they struggle with the symptoms, you should take them to the veterinarian for some prescribed canine painkillers.

In the other cases, where your dog was stung in a vulnerable area or is also experiencing other symptoms, they will need to be taken to the veterinarian as soon as possible as, in the worst cases, it can be fatal. In these cases home remedies simply won't suffice.

This article is purely informative. AnimalWised does not have the authority to prescribe any veterinary treatment or create a diagnosis. We invite you to take your pet to the veterinarian if they are suffering from any condition or pain.

If you want to read similar articles to My Dog Got Stung by a Wasp, What Should I Do?, we recommend you visit our Other health problems category.

Bibliography
  • Carlson and Giffin. (2002). Practical manual of canine veterinary medicine . Madrid. Editorial el Drac.
  • Dr Ken Winkel1 , Dr Gabrielle Hawdon2 & Ms Karen Ashby. (1998). Venomous Bites and Stings. Vichealth. https://www.spiders.com.au/Venomous%20Bites%20and%20Stings%20-%20Victoria%20Health%20Dept.pdf
  • Shojai A.D. (2001). The First Aid Companion For Dogs and Cats. Prevention for Pets. https://books.google.es/books?hl=en&lr=&id=Ce8DAAAAQBAJ&oi=fnd&pg=PR8&dq=wasp+bite+dogs&ots=OHcLKJJsPp&sig=M4-8UO-mjrz-nijdayWdwxHm5xk&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=wasp%20bite%20dogs&f=false

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