'˜People need to be aware of this' - dad's warning after pet dog is stung by jellyfish on South Shields beach
Carl Ellison, 40, was walking his black Labrador puppy Vader on Little Haven Beach on Sunday afternoon when it was stung.
The dog, who is only six months old, began to vomit and appeared generally unwell following the incident.
Carl, who works as a machine setter, had to take Vader to vet immediately. And after treatment, the family pet is now recovering at the family home.
Carl, of Afton Court, South Shields, was with son Billy, 12, when Vader was stung.
He said: “There are a lot of kids down there and I just want people to be aware of it. Vader was vomiting instantly and started shaking as well. His breathing was off too, so he needed to be looked at.
“It happened at about 1.15pm and we went straight to the vet’s with him because he really wasn’t in a good state. I take him there all the time and I’ve never had any problems before.
“This happened mid-beach. It wasn’t as if it was near the water. It must’ve washed up.”
Most stings from sea creatures in the UK are not serious and can be treated with first aid.
The NHS advises that those affected by a sting should rinse the affected area with seawater (not fresh water), remove any spines from the skin using tweezers or the edge of a bank card, soak the area in very warm water (as hot as can be tolerated) for at least 30 minutes and take painkillers.
Vader was given injections by a vet and a time later his condition began to improve.
Carl is now calling on the authorities to do more to warn people about the dangers of jellyfish.
He has put up signs himself near the beach promenade to make people aware that jellyfish have washed up close by.
“There must have been half a dozen dogs being walked on the beach when we were there so it could be a real problem,” he said.
“I managed to warn one bloke as I left the beach but I had to leave quickly to get to the vets.
“My son was quite shaken up by the whole thing as well.
“You just hope another dog or a kid gets stung by one of these.”
A South Tyneside Council spokesperson said: “There has been much national media coverage on the issue of jellyfish washing up on UK beaches as a result of the warm temperatures.
“We would always encourage people visiting our beaches to take great care near the water, and to avoid the jellyfish. Dog owners in particular should be extra vigilant.
“Given that the increased presence of jellyfish coming inshore is believed to be related to the heatwave it would not be practical to have a permanent signage board in place. However officers will review the option for temporary information displayed on noticeboards.
“We are also working with the RNLI to highlight the issue of jellyfish at lifeguards stations on Sandhaven. RNLI lifeguards also provide a first aid service during the bathing season between 10am and 6pm for anyone in a minor injury.”