Firefighters respond to reports of two women attacked by seens on Sunday. Both women were taken to the hospital, and one dog ws killed and another injured. Courtesty photo for The Signal, Ed Nicewicz

Animal care officials investigating bee attack that sent two to hospital

Animal care officials responding to reports of a weekend attack by bees that sent two women to the hospital, killed a dog and left another dog injured, are investigating the attack and, on Friday, issued a list of tips for SCV pet owners

On Sunday at 2:37 p.m., paramedics with the Los Angeles County Fire Department responded to the 17900 block of Beneda Lane in Canyon Country for reports of a bee attack.

“The call came in as multiple bee stings and two patients,” Fire Department spokesman Austin Bennett said Friday.

When paramedics arrived at the incident near Adon Avenue, northwest of Sierra Highway, they upgraded the attack.

“They changed their report from bee stings to a swarm,” Bennett said.

The paramedics treated the women at the scene then each woman was taken to the hospital in separate ambulances, Bennett said.

Several firefighting units were called to the scene.

Two dogs were also attacked by the swarm — one was injured, one killed.

“I saw a woman being treated and a canine being led by firefighters from the scene,” said Ed Nicewicz, who witnessed the response by emergency crews.

Nicewicz crossed Sierra Highway when he noticed the “significant amount of sirens” and the overwhelming response by emergency crews.

“When I saw the firefighter walk down from the scene with the protective head cover I asked them if it was a bee attack and they said ‘Yes.’

“I walked back to Sierra Highway to enter the north part of the scene from Adon street, I eyewitnessed (firefighters) spraying foam on a tree in front of a Beneda residence.”

Afterward they led a dog back to the paramedic’s treatment area, he said.

Nicewicz said he heard fire officials “requesting Vector Control.”

A check with county officials Friday revealed no department — Vector Control, the public health department, the Veterinary Public Health Department or Animal Care and Control — responded to the bee attack.

“Unfortunately Veterinary Public Health does not have data on the bee attacks,” said Bernard, spokesman for the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, who would not share his last name.

Chris Cirar, spokesman for the Los Angeles County Department of Animal Care and Control, said: “Our department will be looking into what happened.”

“Typically our department does not deal with bees but will refer the public to an outside organization that specializes in the removal of bees,” he said.

“Our senior veterinarian provided some tips for pet owners who are concerned about bees around their pets,” Cirar said.

Tips about bees and pets include:

1. Pet owners should be familiar with their environment and if they suspect that bees might be in the immediate area to secure their pet in an area away from the bees until the situation can be remedied.

2. If an owner is concerned or suspects that their pet was stung by a bee, they need to seek veterinary care immediately. Not always will the pet show signs of being stung and can have a serious internal reaction.

3. If a pet is stung by a bee some of the symptoms include swelling and redness of the sting site which can be painful or having an allergic reaction (anaphylaxis) that can be life-threatening to the pet.

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