What To Do If Your Dog Or Cat Gets Stung By A Scorpion
If you have a pet at home, then you’d want to protect its health since having a dog or a cat around isn’t just fun. It’s also fulfilling because these domestic animals are wonderful and also loyal companions. When it comes to your pet’s health, it’s vital to ensure that its vaccinations are complete and on schedule. Not only will this make Lassie or Snowball live longer, but this also protects you from costly expenses for hospitalizations or medicines in case of an infection or disease. However, there are times when vaccines cannot protect your pet, particularly when it gets bitten by other venomous creatures.
Animal Reactions to Scorpion Stings
In some states, such as Arizona, Texas, New Mexico or Colorado, scorpions are very common. All kinds of scorpions contain venom in their stings though the concentration or the power of the poison varies depending on the species. Among the most poisonous types are the Arizona bark scorpion, the DeathStalker scorpion, and the fat-tailed scorpion. Some can kill an average-sized human being in just a few minutes. Considering this, how will your pet fare in case it gets stung by a deadly scorpion? Luckily, although there are dozens of very dangerous species around, only a few are found in the U.S., and the bark scorpion is one of them. Generally, a pet won’t be able to tell the difference between the sting of a scorpion and that of a bee. Animals usually recover within 24 hours after getting stung. Still, expect your pet to experience pain, which could be conveyed through yelping or favoring the injured site.
When to Bring Your Pet to the Vet
In America, one of the greatest causes for concern is the bark scorpion. This small creature can pack a lot of punch in terms of how poisonous it is. Its venom can kill. If you live near or around Arizona, consider the worst case scenario if you suspect that your pet was bitten by a scorpion. Stings are typically painful. However, while an animal can fully recover within 24 hours after being stung by a not-so-poisonous-scorpion, it becomes worse after being bitten by a bark scorpion. So, immediately bring your fuzzy friend to the vet or to an animal hospital if he exhibits the following symptoms – paralysis, difficulty or labored breathing, swelling or skin inflammation, drooling, or collapse. Such signs become evident in about 10 to 15 minutes after the stinging incident. Without medical intervention, pets are likely to die.
First Aid for Scorpion Stings
For stings by not-so-venomous scorpions, there are first aid measures that you can take to alleviate pain and swelling and to promote healing and recovery. Here are a few tips.
1. Apply a thick paste made from baking soda and water.
This blend is a popular home remedy for scorpion stings which also work well when applied onto affected animals. Make sure to apply the paste on the skin to increase effectiveness. Part the fur to get the mixture onto the affected site.
2. Restrict your dog’s or cat’s movements.
Any form of movement can increase the heart rate and circulation, which then further spreads the injected venom into the body more quickly. Therefore, encourage your pet to stay put. Put it in a container, such as a carrier, so that it won’t be able to move around a lot.
3. Place a cone collar on your pet.
Animals like to nip or lick their injuries. But this will only encourage the venom to spread faster. In addition, gnawing on an injured site could result in infection.
- Mr. T in DC. “Columbia Heights Day 2010 Dog”. August 28, 2010. Online image. Flickr. September 20, 2013.
- License: Creative Commons image source
Claire Brent is a full-time freelancer and a mother. She usually blogs about her experiences as a mom, and she also writes about her DIY and other home improvement projects. She has dealt with pest problems before, and she recommends Preventive Pest Control to those in need.