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Pets and Bee Stings


Bee and wasp stings can be painful and very dangerous to our pets. Stings can be fatal if your pet has an allergic reaction, is stung in the mouth or stung multiple times. Facial swelling is the common presentation of bee stings in dogs and can lead to an emergency. 


Should my pet see a vet? Yes! Venom from bees can cause incredible discomfort,  airway obstruction or even shock in some pets. Don’t risk waiting, get your pet seen by a vet as soon as you can.


Common signs of a bee or wasp sting:

  • Crying out or unusual vocalisation
  • Vomiting
  • Lethargy
  • Signs of pain at the site
  • Dramatic facial swelling
  • Swollen foot or sore paw, limping or licking

Signs of a serious allergic reaction:

  • Difficulties breathing
  • Weakness
  • Red, itchy skin lesions that extend past the site
  • Salivating
  • Difficulties swallowing
  • Restlessness
  • Dizziness

If your pet is showing signs of a serious allergic reaction, was stung in the mouth, or suffers multiple stings, seek veterinary attention immediately.


Management of a minor reaction:

  • Gentle removal of the stinger by gently using a piece of cardboard or plastic (credit card). Avoid using tweezers or pinching the stinger as this can release the venom into the pet
  • Cold therapy (ice pack wrapped in a towel or cold water) for 15 minutes 3-4 times for the first 24 hours to reduce swelling and decrease pain
  • Monitor for any signs of an allergic reaction such as swelling, respiratory problems, tremors, diarrhoea

Tips to help prevent a bee or wasp sting:

  • If the pet is prone to chasing insects, keep them away when a bee is near
  • Train the pet from a young age to sit and stay on command so that you can direct them when insects are near
Pets and Bee Stings
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Itchy Pets

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Pets Health is a full service animal hospital with clinics located in Hilton and O’Halloran Hill. We are dedicated to helping you keep your best mate happy and healthy through each stage of their life with compassionate and reassuring veterinary care.

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O’Halloran Hill Vet Centre

123 Main South Road
O’Halloran Hill, SA 5158

Hilton Vet Centre

142 Sir Donald Bradman Drive
Hilton, SA 5033