bees feel threatened or endangered, they respond with a sharp sting that releases venom into the skin. The sting is a defense mechanism meant to scare off any attackers who might put the hive in danger.
– Limping/laying off one or more paws – Yelping or whining – Evidence of a bee stinger in their skin
Luckily, most bee stings are relatively harmless with proper at-home treatment. These are the steps you should take to treat your dog’s bee sting at home.
If the bee stinger is lodged in your dog’s skin, you need to carefully remove it. Avoid the temptation to get tweezers involved, as this could cause more venom from the stinger to be released into your dog’s skin.
Using a damp towel, slowly and gently clean the area around the bee sting.
Take an ice pack wrapped in a towel, or simply a towel doused in cold water and hold this to the affected area. The cold will provide pain relief for your dog and help ease any swelling. For further pain reduction, apply a thick paste of baking soda and water to the sting site. This is said to help counteract the acidity of bee venom.
This is the most important step. While most dogs will be okay and recover quickly after a bee sting, some dogs may have an allergic reaction. Reactions typically range from mild to extremely severe form known as anaphylaxis. These are the symptoms to look out for.
– Redness – Pronounced or noticeable swelling – Pain when the area is touched – Hives or welts
– Difficulty breathing – Drooling – Swelling in areas that could restrict airways or affect breathing, like the mouth or throat – Swelling of the eyes or ears – Lethargy and weakness
It’s possible that your dog might get an infection from the wound the bee’s stinger left in their skin. Keeping it clean and dry should prevent this, but if you notice it’s not healing well or the redness and swelling are getting worse, you should see your vet.