How to Treat a Wasp Sting on You or Your Dogs

On Friday evening I was out for a lovely  walk with my dogs. The sun was  just beginning to set and a nice warm breeze blew against my skin. The dogs were having a great time playing out in the field and I was happily snapping up some photos of my little monsters.

I noticed Luna my Lab was getting into something by the berry bushes. I tried calling her but she was very distracted by whatever she was doing and wouldn’t listen. Normally when my dogs act like this it means they are rolling around in some kind of dead animal or eating horse poo.  I walked over to get her away from whatever disgusting thing she was getting into and my other two dogs followed and went into the bush.
Suddenly Luna and my poodle Lolly dashed out of the bushes and began chasing their tails and freaking out. As I moved closer to them I realized there were wasps all over their bums stinging them!  Apparently Luna had disturbed a wasp nest in the bushes.

I rushed over to try to swat the wasps away  when I felt sharp pains in my thighs. I looks down to see my legs covered in wasps who were stinging me through my leggings. I screamed and tried to pull my pants away from my body with my fingertips but my pants were spandex  capri’s so that didn’t do much good. I tried to run and the wasps continued to sting me and the dogs. The wasps followed us as we ran down a trail through stinging nettle (go figure) which stung the bottom of my legs which were bare.  Once we got back to the house to safety I checked out my legs. At least a half dozen stings around my upper thighs and knees! Plus a stinging nettle rash on my lower legs!  I have no idea how much the dogs got stung  but they were freaking out pretty bad. They obviously didn’t know what was going on or why they were in pain.  Luckily I am not allergic to bees or wasps, although my skin is very sensitive and I react badly.

So, on a positive note I  now know exactly what to do if you get stung by a wasp or any other flying stinging pest.  If you are someone who is allergic to bees I’m sure you already know exactly what to do in this situation. Obviously, get your ass to the hospital and seek immediate medical attention. If you aren’t allergic to stings there is still first aid to do at home to relieve discomfort.  If you aren’t sure, call a health care professional, better safe than sorry.
Only about 1% of the population is deathly allergic to stings. Here are some signs that you may need to call 911

  • Swelling of the face, eyes,  throat or lips
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Disorientation, dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Blue tinged skin

Even if you are not deathly allergic to stings you can still get a pretty bad reaction. I had intense pain where I was stung and the skin was very raised and swollen.  The areas felt hot to the touch and got pretty itchy the next day.
Wasps do not loose their stingers when they sting you which means they can sting you multiple times. Bees loose their stingers which will get stuck in your skin.

  • Pull out the stinger as soon as you can. If you don’t have tweezers try rubbing a credit card against your skin and scraping it out.
  • Once the stinger is out wash the area and apply a paste of baking soda and water to help draw out the venom. 
  • Apply an ice pack to the area 
  • Take an antihistamine like Benadryl and a pain reliever like Tylenol 
  • If the area is itchy apply calamine lotion.  Keep the area clean and watch for signs of infection.

The first aid is similar for your dogs.  My dogs didn’t want me to go near them or touch them. If your dog has a rapid heartbeat or is breathing very heavily take him to the vet. Dogs can have allergic reactions to stings too.

If your dog will let you try to hold an ice pack against the area to reduce swelling.
I’m happy to report both myself and the dogs are doing well and have totally healed up.
Have any tips for sting treatment? Share in the comments!

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3 Responses to How to Treat a Wasp Sting on You or Your Dogs

  1. Kanelstrand says:

    Oh, that sounds like a really horrible experience! Something like Winnie the Pooh though not as naive and funny. When I was younger I got stung quite often, so I learnt to deal with it by just waiting to pass, never took any stings out. But I recently looked for ways to treat wasp stings and the most reasonable thing I found said that there are many ways to for treatment depending on the culture and nation but the most important is that the person in trouble BELIEVES that the method will help them, if you know what I mean.

    I hope you are fine now. I can't imagine how much it hurts to be stung by so many wasps simultaneously.


  2. AsteropeBC says:

    Good to know. The point about avoiding infection is a good one.


  3. ElfRenee says:

    Wow, that's really scary! I'm glad you are all ok!


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