Dog Bit By a Spider: Should I Be Worried?

When your dog has been bitten by a spider, it’s natural to feel a surge of concern. In Milwaukee, where various spider species roam—some harmless, others potentially dangerous—it’s essential to know how to react to such incidents. This blog post will explore what steps to take if your dog is bitten by a spider and how to identify signs that may require urgent veterinary care. If you suspect your dog’s spider bite is cause for concern, call Frontier Veterinary Urgent Care at 262-226-2055.


Identifying the Spider

Common Spiders in Milwaukee

In Milwaukee, the majority of spider bites on dogs come from non-venomous species such as the common house spider. However, there are venomous spiders in the area, such as the black widow and the brown recluse, whose bites can pose serious risks to your pet. Identifying the spider, if possible, can help you assess the urgency of the situation.

What to Do if You See the Spider

If you witness the bite or spot the spider nearby, try to safely capture or photograph the spider for identification. This information could be vital in helping your veterinarian understand the potential risks and decide on the appropriate treatment.

Symptoms of Spider Bites in Dogs

Mild to Moderate Symptoms

The most common reaction to a spider bite in dogs includes: 

  • Minor swelling
  • Redness 
  • Discomfort around the bite site
  • Licking or chewing at the area 

These mild symptoms typically resolve with minimal intervention but should still be monitored for any changes.

Severe Symptoms That Require Immediate Attention

If the spider was venomous, symptoms could escalate quickly. Signs that your dog needs urgent care include: 

  • Significant swelling 
  • Muscle rigidity
  • Labored breathing, 
  • Behavior changes such as increased agitation or lethargy 

These symptoms can emerge within a few hours and indicate a potentially life-threatening reaction.

When to Call Frontier Veterinary Urgent Care

If your dog exhibits any severe symptoms or if you know they were bitten by a venomous spider, it’s crucial to seek immediate veterinary attention. Remember, swift action can make a significant difference in the outcome for your pet.

Monitoring Over Time

Even if the initial symptoms are mild, keep a close eye on your dog for the next 24-48 hours. Any escalation in symptoms or the appearance of new signs should prompt a visit to Frontier Veterinary Urgent Care. Our team can provide a thorough evaluation and necessary treatment.

Preventing Spider Bites

  • Keeping Your Home Spider-Free: Regular cleaning and decluttering can reduce the presence of spiders in your home. Pay special attention to dark, undisturbed spaces where spiders may nest.
  • Protecting Your Dog Outside: When outside, keep your dog on a leash and steer clear of known spider habitats such as wood piles and dense underbrush. Regular checks of your pet’s coat during tick season can also help catch spiders before they bite.

Recognizing Urgent Spider Bite Symptoms in Dogs

While a spider bite can be a scary event for any dog owner, understanding the types of spiders in your area, recognizing the symptoms of a bite, and knowing when to seek veterinary care can help keep your dog safe. If you’re ever in doubt, or if your dog starts showing any signs of distress after a bite, please call Frontier Veterinary Urgent Care at 262-226-2055 for immediate guidance and support.