The UFI (Unidentified Flying Insects) are irresistible for playful kittens or hunters like us : butterflies, mosquitoes, flies, wasps, bees, bumblebees, hornets, horseflies…
In time, we learnt to identify dangerous insects ; however, many kittens and young cats risk get stung. The unpleasant experience arrives generally only once. Most of the time, an insect sting will ache but be harmless for the cat. It can be dangerous if the cat is stung on the face, in particular in the mouth, in the throat, or down on the nose.
What to do if your cat is stung by an insect ?
Wasps and hornets
The venom of wasps and hornets is released under the skin ; it contains among others histamine, which causes inflammation, oedema, and pain at the place of the sting. The cat shows that it hurts and licks constantly the spot of the sting. An anaphylactic shock is possible if the cat is allergic, or if he is victim of multiple stings. The venom of wasps is alkaline, you can dab the location of the sting with some cold water with vinegar to neutralize it.
Bees and bumblebees
Their venom is similar to that of wasps, and causes the same symptoms. Contrary to wasps and to hornets which have a smooth sting, bees have a barbed sting which stays in the wound. As possible, remove the sting with a tweezers without touching the bag poison which is hung on it. Bumblebees, them, have a smooth sting. You can then dab the location of the sting with some cold water added by sodium bicarbonate to neutralize the venom, because the venom of bees is rather acid.
Gadflies and stable flies
Their bite aches, and they can pass on viruses, bacteria, and parasites. It is important to disinfect the location of the bite.
Mosquito bites are irritating but harmless under our latitudes, and go unnoticed most of the time.
Any insect bite in the mouth, the throat, or the nose of your cat is a veterinary emergency !
For any sting in another zone, watch closely your cat. In case of doubt, contact immediately your veterinarian : he can advise you and give you if needed antihistamines or corticoids to treat your cat.