Now that summer is here, your dog is probably spending more time outside. If you live in the desert, that can be a problem, especially if scorpions are nearby. Dogs are naturally inquisitive, which means they'll try to investigate any little creature that they see crawling around. If your dog gets bit by a scorpion, the first thing you should do is seek immediate medical care from a veterinarian. Once your dog has received proper medical care, here are some steps you can take to help alleviate the pain and discomfort your pet will be experiencing.
Scorpion stings can cause severe swelling to the affected area. To reduce the swelling, and prevent the toxins from spreading to other areas of the body, you should apply cold packs as soon as you can. Place a cold compress on the sting site and then lay an ice pack on top of that. Leave the ice in place for several minutes. Apply ice several times for the first day and then whenever your pet appears to be in pain after that. Continue ice treatment throughout the healing process.
Keep It Still
You should try to keep your dog as still as possible after a scorpion sting. Too much activity will increase the swelling and slow down the healing process. If your dog won't rest quietly on the couch, or in its bed, you should contain it in a dog crate. If you don't have access to a dog crate, you can confine your dog to the bathroom or other small space in the house.
Reach for the Baking Soda
Scorpion stings can leave your pet in pain for several days. One way to reduce the pain is to apply baking soda poultices to the affected area. Place a small amount of baking soda in a small bowl. Add enough water to form a light paste. Apply the poultice directly to the sting. Reapply the poultice as needed. If your pet won't keep the poultice on, you can soak then in a bathtub instead. Fill your bathtub with lukewarm water and add about a cup of baking soda. Place your dog in the tub and allow it to soak for about 30 minutes. Repeat this process twice a day until the wound is healed.
If your dog gets stung by a scorpion this summer, use the methods described here to provide comfort from pain and swelling. If the area continues to swell, or if it becomes difficult for your dog to breathe, you should contact a veterinarian--like one from Howard County Animal Hospital--as soon as possible.