It’s that time of the year when flowers are blooming and everyone wants to be outside. That includes humans of course, but many cats appreciate some time outdoors as well. After being cooped up all winter, even indoor cats like to enjoy some fresh air. Being outdoors together can be a wonderful way to spend quality time with your cat. However, the great outdoors can pose some potential hazards for kitty. For instance, insect bites and bee stings can be harmful to cats. Here’s what to do if your cat is stung by a bee.
Be Aware of Your Cat
This sounds pretty simple, but pay attention to your cat. It’s best to know where she is while you two are outside. If something does happen to her, you’ll be that much quicker to respond. Sometimes, a quick response can make all the difference between a milder problem and a severe one. Observing your cat will also clue you in to if she has been stung by a bee. You might see her scratching or pawing at the place where she got stung. In some cases, you might also see that she is swollen where the bee stung her. Paying attention to kitty while she’s outside is your first step.
Look for the Bee’s Stinger
If you suspect your cat was stung by a bee, you should first look for the stinger. Some bees lose the stinger after they sting someone. If you do see a bee stinger in your cat’s skin, you may try to remove it. VCA Hospitals recommends grabbing a credit card instead of a pair of tweezers. The credit card, when the edge is run over the bee’s stinger, can minimize the amount of venom. On the other hand, tweezers could squeeze that bee sting venom into your cat.
First Aid for Bee Stings in Cats
Once you’ve removed the stinger, try adding something cool to kitty’s skin. Our go-to as humans is an ice pack which can work well with cats. Otherwise, try a small package of frozen vegetables in a pinch. Adding a cold compress to the sting can help reduce swelling and prevent lots of discomfort.
You can also try mixing up some baking soda with water and applying that to your cat’s sting. This also helps calm down irritation, according to VCA Hospitals. If poor kitty got stung more than once, a bath with oatmeal may help.
Try to Find the Bee
Now, not all stinging insects leave their stingers behind. Other flying insects that look like bees (wasps, for example) don’t lose their stinger. That can make it tricky to know whether your cat was stung by a bee or something similar. If you can figure out what type of insect stung your cat, you’re better prepared if you need a trip to the vet. This information can come in handy if the sting causes severe problems like major swelling or trouble breathing. Tummy troubles can be another sign that your cat needs a trip to the vet. Don’t hesitate to take her in if you suspect she got stung by a bee and needs vet attention.