What to Do If You and Your Pup Encounter a Rattlesnake

In our blog, “Keep Your Pup Safe From Rattlesnakes This Summer,” we discussed a few different ways you can protect your pup from a rattlesnake bite, as well as measures you can take to avoid an encounter altogether. However, if you are going to be spending a lot of time outside and on different hiking trails, chances are you will encounter a rattlesnake at some point.

What to Do If You and Your Pup Encounter a Rattlesnake

While this can be a scary experience, there are a few things you should keep in mind if you and your pooch come into contact with a rattlesnake.

Stay Calm

If you and your pup encounter a rattlesnake, the most important thing you can do is remain calm. Slowly and calmly back away from the snake until you are no longer within reach of it. It is hard to know how long a snake is when it is coiled up so, be sure you back away until you are sure you are a safe distance away or until the snake stops rattling. Once you are safely away from the snake move to a different area or return to your car, grab your dog seat cover and head home. However, be sure to keep an eye out for more snakes on your way back.

What if Your Dog Is Bitten?

If your dog is bitten by a rattlesnake, it is critical that you seek immediate medical attention for your pup. If you can, carry your dog to your car, as this will help prevent the venom from spreading through his body. Once you both have made it to the car, immediately get your pup to the vet as fast as you can. The faster your dog gets treated with anti-venom, the better chance they have of surviving the bite.

What Are the Symptoms?

It is important to be able to recognize the symptoms of a rattlesnake bite in your dog. If you are not sure if your pup has been bitten by a rattlesnake, look for the following signs:

  • Puncture Wounds
  • Severe Pain
  • Swelling
  • Panting/Drooling
  • Lethargy or Weakness
  • Muscle Tremors
  • Seizures

These are just a few of the symptoms. The best thing to do if you suspect your dog has been bitten is to get them to the vet right away.

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