What Do I Do if My Dog is Stung by a Bee?

Skin & Coat Tips

Dogs are curious animals and that follow their nose. Sometimes, they come across a bee and can’t help but be intrigued. A bee’s initial reaction is to protect itself, so your dog may end up with a bee sting. What should you do if this happens to your unsuspecting dog? Keep reading to find out! 

Bee Stings and Why They Happen

One bee sting is nothing to be concerned about. It will just be painful and cause slight irritation for your dog. Multiple bee stings is very dangerous and will require an immediate vet visit. The stinger of a bee contains a poison that is injected into your dog at the time of the sting. It is also barbed, making it easy to attach itself in the skin.

What To Watch For

Because dogs explore with their noses, that tends to be the most common site of a bee sting. Dog’s noses are very sensitive and your dog will most likely be uncomfortable. If the bee stings inside the mouth or throat, your dog is at risk of a closed airway due to swelling. 

Look out for any allergic reactions: 

  • Overall Body Weakness 
  • Trouble Breathing 
  • Excessive Amount of Swelling 
  • Vomiting 

Take your dog to the vet immediately if you notice any of these symptoms! 

Treatment for Your Dog After A Bee Sting

Treatment varies on the severity of the sting. A single bee sting will only cause a short amount of discomfort. Take a closer look at your dog to determine if the stinger is still lodged in the skin. If so, gently scrape your fingernail or credit card over it. The stinger should come out in a few passes. Never use tweezers to remove a stinger. This will cause the poison inside to be released further into the skin. A small amount of water and baking soda can be applied to the area, as well as an ice pack. 

Diphenhydramine (the active ingredient in Benadryl) can be given at 1 to 2 milligrams per pound of body weight. If using a Benadryl product, check to make sure there are NO other active ingredients. Some Benadryl products contain decongestants as well, and these can be dangerous for dogs. Just know this may make your dog sleepy but it can also make some dogs excited. 

If your dog has an allergic reaction or multiple bee stings, get your dog to your vet so they can take the proper steps for treatment.

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