Vet’s warning after spate of dogs stung by jellyfish

Vet  Fiona Campbell (left), with Cooky's owner Val Tear, at John Muir Country Park where Cooky was stung by a jellyfish.
Vet Fiona Campbell (left), with Cooky's owner Val Tear, at John Muir Country Park where Cooky was stung by a jellyfish.

A Dunbar veterinary practice is warning about the dangers jellyfish can pose to dogs after a rise in the number of pets being stung.

Vets at Dunedin Veterinary Centre treated two dogs in a week after they were stung by jellyfish on nearby beaches.

Cooky was stung by a jellyfish he picked up at John Muir Country Park in Dunbar.

Cooky was stung by a jellyfish he picked up at John Muir Country Park in Dunbar.

They include Cooky, a seven-year-old greyhound now recovering after encountering one of the sea creatures during a walk with owner Val Tear in Dunbar’s John Muir Country Park.

Cooky picked up a jellyfish that had been washed up onto the beach before his horrified owner grabbed him and shook it out of his mouth – but it was too late to prevent him from being stung.

He suffered an immediate reaction and started salivating and frantically scratching his face, which was quickly covered in red blotches.

Fortunately, Val works at the Dunbar vets’ practice, and her quick-thinking actions might have saved her pet’s life.

She rinsed his mouth out with a bottle of water and took him home to drink lots of milk, an antidote to the sting.

Symptoms of a jellyfish sting include blistering, burning pain, changes in heart rhythm, difficulty breathing, itching, nausea, fever, excessive drooling, vomiting, swellings and hives.

Vet Fiona Campbell said: “Washing dogs in salt water or mild vinegar solution helps to deactivate the sting, but you should take your pet to the vet as soon as possible if they show a reaction.”