This article was written for Fethiye Times by Rebecca Parsley
Around 50 people gathered in Üzümlü last weekend to learn some potentially life-saving techniques to help dogs and cats who have been bitten, stung or poisoned.
At the session, organised by Animal Care Üzümlü, Fethiye vet Serkan Tarim and his assistant, Can Torun spoke about the differences in symptoms between snake bites, spider bites, and scorpion, wasp and bee stings, as well as what happens when an animal ingests poison.
There was a demonstration on how and where to inject an animal with atropine, a drug that can slow down the deadly effects of poison and buy valuable time to seek treatment, as well as information on the correct dose to administer to different-sized animals.
“This won’t save the animal’s life, but it gives them a chance while you take them to a vet,” Serkan explained. “Always, you will need to get professional help after a dog or cat has been poisoned.”
Serkan also gave advice to those worried about processionary caterpillars, which can be seen in the woods at this time of year.
The acidic fluid they secrete from their hairs can cause severe problems, both respiratory and physical, to dogs and humans.
If walkers carried alkaline water with them, he said, this could be used to neutralise and minimise the effects.
Stings and bites
Anti-venom/poison kits were available, containing pre-loaded syringes to treat the effects of poisoning, stings and bites, along with bottles of atropine.
Serkan said the drug didn’t need to be carried by everyone but said it was useful if each community had a couple of people who were happy to store it.
There was also a raffle and a fully laden table of cakes and pastries for sale to raise funds for ACU and the animals in the organisation’s care.
With thanks to Serkan Tarim and Can Torun for their time and expertise, ACU for organising the session, and Park Alya for hosting the event.