With Spring fast approaching, we are all concerned about protecting our furry friends from fleas, ticks, and mosquitos. But what do we do about bees? Like some humans, are dogs fatally allergic to bee stings?
The natural curiosity of dogs has them sticking their noses in places that may not be safe. Add to that their propensity to chase after moving things, and they have set themselves up for a bee sting. Signs that a dog has been stung may include crying out, running in circles, or drooling. You may notice swelling in the area of the sting, pawing and rubbing at this area, or hives developing. More serious signs include vomiting, difficulty breathing, and possible collapse. These more serious signs are symptoms of anaphylactic shock, the same fatal reaction that some people have to bee stings, and it requires immediate attention by a veterinarian.
If you suspect that your dog has been stung by a bee, seek veterinary attention immediately. Anaphylactic reactions can develop very quickly, and waiting to see if the reaction occurs may delay necessary life-saving treatment. Your veterinarian can remove the stinger if still present, administer medications to treat an allergic reaction, and give your dog medications for pain and itching. More serious reactions may require hospitalization with more intensive treatment.
To avoid bee stings, keep dogs away from flower beds and areas of your home where bees may build hives. Keep emergency information for your veterinarian on hand in case your dog is stung. It is also a good idea to keep some Benadryl in the medicine cabinet in case your veterinarian recommends administering a dose on the way to the veterinary clinic. However, no medication should ever be given without checking with your veterinarian first.