Help! My boxer got stung by a yellowjacket and he's getting hives!

Hot Rod stirred up a yellowjacket nest about 40 minutes ago. He didn’t have any immediate reaction, but now his muzzle looks a little swollen and he clearly has hives and itching. He doesn’t act distressed otherwise. He was stung only a couple of times by one or two yellowjackets before I realized what was happening and brought him in.
Advice please?

Emergency vet. Swollen muzzle can quickly proceed to a inability to breathe.

Agree - that’s an allergic reaction, and if it gets severe it could get extremely ugly. Emergency vet NOW!

The muzzle isn’t that critical. I would give him some Benadryl, start with 3 of the 25 mg tablets.

I had a Lab that may have eaten one and had her throat stung on the way down. That was an emergency. The vet and I couldn’t say for sure what did happen, but an injection kept her throat from swelling shut.

WTH? For an adult human you normally start treatment with only 50 mg of Benadryl (usually), you’re recommending 75 for a dog when you don’t even know the animal’s weight?

Humans and dogs don’t process Benadryl in the same way.

I have a dog with seasonal allergies that show up as him having bad skin itching and etc. He gets a steroid injection once a year and I control it otherwise with Benadryl, the dog only weighs about 25 lbs and I was told to give him a tablet an hour or so before he went outside and it would help control his outbreaks, and I was told it was fine to up the dose to 2 tablets if I wanted. That would be double his weight in lbs in mg of Benadryl. In the vets words dogs have fewer receptors that Benadryl binds to than humans do (relative to size) so a far higher dosage of Benadryl per kg or per lbs is required to be effective in dogs.

At the very least make a phone call to your vet.

If your vet is closed call the nearest emergency vet clinic.

The page below has a locator for emergency vet hospitals.

They also have numbers to call but they look expensive for a freaking phone call. Was 10 years or more since I had to call for a potential poison issue for my pet and I recall getting free help then (turned out to not be a big deal and my pet was fine). Either things have changed or my Google-Fu is weak tonight.

Hours and hours later, an update:
Hot Rod is fine! We had to go to Indy, an hour’s drive, to see an emergency vet. (We were gone before most responses here, actually). Stopped at CVS and gave him a dose of Benadryl on the way.
They gave him a steroid and more Benadryl and sent us home an hour later.
All is well. :slight_smile: Thank you for all your help.

Really glad to hear it! I have had a few occasions to rush my pet to the emergency room (although mine was not so far away thankfully). All turned out well in my cases too but I understand the profound worry the experience brings with it. That must’ve been a really long drive (as in feels a lot longer than it really is).

Glad your pup is doing well.

Give Hot Rod an ear scritch from the SDMB!

Glad to hear you pup is doing well!

I’m glad to hear Hot Rod is doing well. Since I work with humans instead of dogs I had no idea you could give benadryl to dogs. I learned something that might be useful!

Happy he’s OK.

Thank you for your report. A later update would be nice too.

Now you must take revenge on the bees!

I like boxers, glad to hear your boy will be fine!

Hot Rod is just dandy–back to his normal bouncy trusting self with no rercussions from his stings or sudden late-night trip. He’s not even worried about being $125 poorer. He figures he is well worth it–and of course he’s right. (He’s the dog that everything happens to–he’s had heartworms, surgery for a cut foot, lost-for-3-days adventures, etc. My other dogs? Nothing.)
The vet prescribed 50mg of Benadryl for him, which is just over 1mg per pound body weight. (He’s a little boxer.) Good to know in case it happens again.
Tonight I will deal with the evil yellowjacket nest. My karma may suffer, but not my dogs. :smiley: