Doggie Go Downtown?
June 29, 2006 9:58 PM   Subscribe

My friend's bullmastiff puppy has a swollen nose. There's suspicion of a possible spider bite from a wolf spider (black, with white dots). There are puncture wounds maybe 1mm apart, swelling about the size of a tablespoon, no rupture, nausea, diarrhea, or collapse. Nose is swollen, though. Go to the vet?
posted by effugas to Pets & Animals (19 answers total)
vet. now.
posted by radioamy at 9:58 PM on June 29, 2006

Are you sure of the name of the spider? What we in SoCal call wolf spiders are very large gray and brown spiders that build funnel shaped webs. Wolf spider bites to humans are fairly painful (I know from personal experience) but I've never heard of any real danger. In fact, many SoCalians I know like to have wolf spiders in their house because they kill the dangerous spiders like black widows. It definitely wouldn't hurt to play it safe and get to the vet.
posted by buggzzee23 at 10:13 PM on June 29, 2006

posted by frogan at 10:19 PM on June 29, 2006

posted by oflinkey at 10:20 PM on June 29, 2006

Vet. Not tomorrow AM, now.
posted by SpecialK at 10:21 PM on June 29, 2006

By all means, vet.
posted by crw at 10:21 PM on June 29, 2006

(Why? You don't know what kind of spider. Spider bites can form abcesses if not treated, effectively eating away the face of your friend's dog. Stopping the spread of spider venom and cleaning the abcess once it's formed is major surgery; stopping it's spread before it spreads is a quick snick of the knife.

Note: This isn't veterinary advice, but was told to me by a vet student. In other words, seek competent care for that dog immediately.)
posted by SpecialK at 10:23 PM on June 29, 2006

I have to seventh the suggestion...go to the are vet ERs in most large cities and even some small ones. Dogs are pretty tough creatures, and for something to effect him like that is just a little too scary to leave and 'see what happens'

I'd rather pay a vet bill that turns out to be unneccesary than the alternative.

Radar sends doggy snuggs to the puppers.

posted by legotech at 10:24 PM on June 29, 2006

You can give him Benadryl and see if the swelling goes down if you wish. (If he is not having difficulty breathing and the swelling is not increasing at an alarming rate) I would personally call a vet and give him the Benadryl. (In fact, when something similar happened, that is exactly what I did. When I told the vet that the Benadryl controlled and descreased the swelling, he basically said to keep an eye on him and call back if the situation changes.) The Benadryl will cause drowsiness but much like in humans, should not have any adverse side effects. I now keep Benadryl on me in case of an allergic reaction so that I have time to get him to the vet.
posted by hindmost at 10:28 PM on June 29, 2006

Vet! Now! Faceless doggies are not cute!
posted by billybunny at 10:52 PM on June 29, 2006

A wolf spider bite is not going to make your dog's face come off. They are poisoness, yes, and the bite is painful, yes, but their venom does not contain the necrotic cytotoxins that cause face-coming-off-ness that you would find from the much, much more dangerous Hobo Spider or Brown Recluse.

Take it to the vet, sure. Especially if the swelling is getting worse.

Know, also, that there are very few treatments for BRS or Hobo spider toxins besides cutting open the wound and scooping out the venom. I've heard there's been some success with Dapsone (used for Leprosy) and electro-shock therapy, but I don't know how a dog would take it.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 11:12 PM on June 29, 2006

This is off topic from the question (which has been answered a this point), but may be informative; that isn't a bull mastiff. I'm nearly certain that dog is a pit bull, also know as an American Staffordshire Terrier. In case you didn't know.
posted by Derive the Hamiltonian of... at 11:23 PM on June 29, 2006

If it was my dog, I'd call the vet's office ASAP, describe the symptoms, and ask what to do.
posted by Robert Angelo at 7:14 AM on June 30, 2006

Seems to me there's two possibilities:

1. It's serious, in which case the vet can provide appropriate treatment.
2. It's not serious, in which case the vet can tell your friend that it's not serious and set his mind at ease.

I'd be willing to pay the vet either for the treatment or for the peace of mind.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 7:54 AM on June 30, 2006

Derive the Hamiltonian of... , he actually looks pretty exactly like my parents' English mastiff when he was young (plenty of young mastiff photos here), which many people mistakenly called a bullmastiff; but I would imagine that bullmastiff puppies look reasonably similar to mastiff puppies, anyway.
posted by occhiblu at 7:57 AM on June 30, 2006

Yeah, Derive, she doesn't have the right coloring, chest, or forehead for an Amstaff... might be a cross, but doesn't look like it. The coloring, ears, forehead, and posture all match a mastiff.
posted by SpecialK at 9:09 AM on June 30, 2006

Any chance on an update as to the pup's condition? Radar and I are worried about the cute baby dog :)

posted by legotech at 12:56 PM on June 30, 2006

Definitely a pitbull. Cute too.
posted by radioamy at 7:32 PM on June 30, 2006


Puppy's OK. My friend kept watch on her and decided she'd take her to the vet if the swelling got significantly worse (or if there was any visible ulceration); thankfully nothing of the sort happened. She sends her thanks to everyone!

BTW, not a pit. I think she said the pup was three quarters English mastiff and one quarter something else.
posted by effugas at 12:54 AM on July 5, 2006

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