Insect Bites & Tick Removal

June 30th, 2015

When the weather is good, it is a fun time to take the pets outdoors, but part of that adventure always involves some risk like insect bites and ticks. Take the time now to know what to do in a pet emergency before it happens.




Redness or swollen at the site of the bite, inflamed skin, severe itching, breathing difficulty, vomiting




Like people, animals vary in their reactions to insect venom. The response can range from mild irritation to allergic shock.

Check the area for any remaining stingers or insects.

Remove them and cleanse the area with soap and water. Cool wet towels or gauze can be used (for 20 to 30 minutes) to soothe the area.

Watch your pet for signs of allergic reaction (see Allergic Reactions, and follow the instructions if needed).

Be particularly mindful of difficulty breathing. When returning from a park or a hike, check thoroughly for ticks by running your fingers through your pet’s entire coat, and inspect the paws, pads, between toes, and inside ears. If you find a tick on your pet, please contact your veterinarian to find the most appropriate way for your pet to have the tick removed.


Dealing with a pet emergency can be frightening. Knowing the signs of common pet emergencies and what you can do to alleviate your pet’s pain is an important safety precaution to take. The American Red Cross has a Pet First Aid mobile app complete with videos and tutorials on many emergency situations that can help you in an emergency situation.

Of course, whenever your pet is showing serious signs of a health issue, your first step is to contact your primary care veterinarian or an emergency veterinary hospital. If it is indicated that your pet may suffer from a serious condition, a veterinary specialist or emergency clinician is available at an ExpertVet certified hospital.