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  1. #1
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    Default Warning - especially to dog owners

    I guess the snake season starts at different times in different areas depending on temperatures, but it's really just started on the tablelands. As we have been told, the snakes are especially dangerous when they first become active - they are aggressive and seem to have well topped-up supplies of venom.

    Our youngest Jack Russell bitch (Winnie) got bitten by a brown snake yesterday and is unlikely to recover. We have 3 of these terriers, and they were obviously all involved - snake was partly eaten and they all had dried blood on their fur. The older two are very good hunters, but Winnie is too impetuous, even at 4 years old.

    When my wife found the snake and called the dogs they all seemed OK, but Winnie seemed a bit subdued. She took them all to the vet (10 minute drive) and by the time she got there Winnie was shaking and salivating. Three doses of anti-venom, and several hours on oxygen have kept her alive, but she hasn't improved since about 11:00pm last night. We'll probably have her put down this afternoon. We have identified at least two sets of puncture wounds on her muzzle, so she probably got a massive dose of venom.

    She is a very small dog, so it was probably hopeless from the start, however one vet told us a story of a local Jack Russell who has been treated for snake bite 11 times in the last 8 years!!!

    Sadly

    Alec

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  2. #2
    wielder of the sword Australdi's Avatar
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    Sending thoughts & prayers that Winnie pulls through with a miraculous return to health.
    Aus
    ".....the good health of a pond is held in a delicate balance. A pond's condition
    deteriorates when the bottom environment cannot support animal life.
    The bottom is the area that runs out of oxygen first, it is where the most oxygen is used........"



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  3. #3
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    Default It gets worse!

    Thanks Aus - much appreciated. However, instead of typing the first post I should have been out checking the dogs. When I did go out to let them off, Winnie's half-sister (Artemis) was clearly in trouble.

    She fell forward when she tried to come to me and landed jaw first with an audible clunk. She had been salivating (drooling) for some time, as her bedding was wet! So she also got bitten yesterday - it just took longer for the poison to affect her (& surely she didn't get as big a dose).

    I flew into the vet with both of them. Winnie is on a drip - vet says not to give up, she may be OK, even though she can't do much other than breathe (can't even blink!). Artemis had anti-venom and also saline drip. Of the two she is in much better shape - more weak than actually paralysed, and can wag her tail (& blink).

    Please everyone be careful of snakes - especially if children or pets are around.

    Cheers

    Alec

  4. #4
    wielder of the sword Australdi's Avatar
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    woah...sending double dose of speedy and full recovery thoughts! Poor brave little tykes ( I am so glad I don't get snakes round my place!)

    *Zillah is sending his love & prayers too + a few get well soon licks
    Aus
    ".....the good health of a pond is held in a delicate balance. A pond's condition
    deteriorates when the bottom environment cannot support animal life.
    The bottom is the area that runs out of oxygen first, it is where the most oxygen is used........"



    '84 fuego GTX
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  5. #5
    JBN
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    I know the feeling. Had an army tracker dog (labrador/doberman) lose a fight to a taipan in the High Range area behind Townsville many years ago. He was bitten a few times to the chest and died within 15 minutes. Not a thing we could do as it was a few hours drive to get to Townsville.

    John

  6. #6
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    Taipan!! Shudder!!

    Thank goodness we only have harmless old browns and blacks around here (there are others, but rarer).

    Sorry to be posting this in Froggy chat, but we did take Winnie to the vet in the Xantia! Like a few others, I don't have Pond access back yet...

    Cheers

    Alec

  7. #7
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    Default A big snake

    We have been hearing a few of the vet's favourite snake stories - here's another.

    A dog was brought in to the vet (in Moree I think), but the owners didn't bring the snake. However they said it was a 10' brown snake...

    Now the vet knew that people usually exaggerate about snakes, but they were adamanant. However a 10' foot brown snake seemed so unlikely that they all agreed it must have been a king brown, which is actually related to black snakes. King brown bites are treated with tiger snake anti-venene, so the vet put 3 or 4 doses of the tiger snake treatment (at $450 a pop!!!) into the dog. Just to be sure he sent the owners home for the snake (which was apparently "deceased").

    What do you know - it was a brown snake!! So another 3 or 4 doses of anti-venene - the right one this time (ka-ching!! - cash-register sound). Of course they had exaggerated about the length of the snake - it was only 9' 6" . The dog? Don't remember if it lived or died...

    Cheers

    Alec

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    Contented Peugeot Driver addo's Avatar
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    Hmm - stress and fiscal imposition - not a good start to the snake season.

    I know the present kitty wouldn't last a day on a farm - too knuckleheaded.

  9. #9
    1000+ Posts jo proffi's Avatar
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    Apparently, there are two types of browns, a western and an eastern.

    There is only an anti-venomn for one of them.

    If you are bitten and after a shot of anti venomn you die, they then know it was the other snake species that bit you.


    I hope your little ones pull through.

    I live in fear of my little one coming into contact with a brown snake.
    Touch wood she'll never find out about snakes.



    Jo

  10. #10
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    Both are home and breathing unassisted. Winnie is still paralysed and does a very good impression of a dead dog with dry starey eyes and open mouth. It's just that she's breathing! The other one can blink and looks like a living dog - just can't actually move.

    Our vet (Bernie) is positive about both, so we keep going.

    Add0 - you got it in one!

    Alec

  11. #11
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    Default Speaking of knuckleheadedness....

    I inherited this small dog from the family (see picture of said rodent attached) and not being clued up on dogs I knew nothing about ticks here in Queensland, but the vet sure did when I admitted the near dead dog to hospital with 16 paralysis ticks chewing at her (ka-ching$)...this has happened twice (ka-ching$), but I wised up and discovered Advantix...no more ticks.

    Then I discovered that a small rodent dog will attack anything smaller than itself with mucho gusto i.e lizards, mice, birds and cats of course (with encouragement from moi) and especially cane toads, another two trips to the vet (ka-ching$)(ka-ching$), cane toad venom will kill small dogs, and then blow me down the neighbour rings me and says my dog has escaped and traps itself under the neighbours house, the Fire brigade is called to sort it out...up comes the veranda floorboards to rescue rodent dog (ka-ching$).

    I tell yer, a square mouth shovel across the back of the head was looking good there for a while....the trouble is the little bugger (rodent dog) has weazled it's way into my heart and now I can't part with it....

    Curses...women, old renaults and this flameing rodent dog will be the end of me.
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    Last edited by 59 Floride; 4th November 2010 at 10:16 PM.

  12. #12
    1000+ Posts okalford's Avatar
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    Hi Alec, I hope and pray for your dogs to recover.

    The snake issue scares me lots with my two dogs. I live in a city so snakes are not an issue for us unless we travel to the bush. They would probably see a snake as a toy as they do with most things and pick it up for a shake around. Yikes!
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  13. #13
    1000+ Posts jo proffi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 59 Floride View Post
    Then I discovered that a small rodent dog will attack anything with mucho gusto i.e lizards, mice.......
    Fixed for you.


    You might want to try one with cattle dog bred into it.
    It makes them think for a second before going in.
    When they do go in, its 'round the outside' for the heels, and a native animal stands half a chance if it can keep facing the dog.

    Another thing is it allows them to use all 5 gears in their 5 speed gearbox rather than charging around in second gear at redline all the time.


    The cattle X also makes them a bit more desert/car hardy and lets them park up and sleep for long periods if needed.




    Both are home and breathing unassisted. Winnie is still paralysed and does a very good impression of a dead dog with dry starey eyes and open mouth. It's just that she's breathing! The other one can blink and looks like a living dog - just can't actually move.
    I shouldn't laugh in this most critical hour, but your dry description touches a nerve with me.

    I'm thinking of the little guys tonight.

    Jo

  14. #14
    1000+ Posts jo proffi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by okalford View Post
    They would probably see a snake as a toy as they do with most things and pick it up for a shake around. Yikes!
    You never know Kaye.
    A few weeks back my little flea and the bro's belgium sheep dog were trotting along in snake territory near Oberon.

    My brother saw the dogs turn and walk around an object like it was something bad.
    It was clear enough a sign for him to take a look at what they'd avoided, and spotted the big brown.
    Whilst it was good to know the dogs avoid snakes, the land owner gave me a clear warning about the huge wedge tail eagle , and its propensity to take far bigger animals than flea.

    Jo

  15. #15
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    I hate hearing about dogs getting bit by snakes. I was trying to get post numbers up but I didn't want to bump this thread off the top of the list. Hopefully this post will put it back up top!

  16. #16
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    Hi Alec,

    yes the tablelands are particularly bad for snakes. My father was, for many years, a DMR surveyor based in Tamworth, ranging as far north as Glen Innes or Tenterfield. The snake stories are part of family lore. They used to have tremendous fun with the Pommy immigrants who passed through as chainmen, who learned never to put a traverse station on or near a big flat rock, or they would have to shoo the (many) snakes away before they could re-occupy it. The sight of a translucent Pom with a long handled shovel chasing (tentatively) snakes is something I'll never forget. Very bad, as you say, early in the season, and also late summer, when they get sleepy and you can step on them before they wake up and shoot through. Most of the summer is not too bad, because they hear you coming and get out of your way, but nothing will escape the curiosity of cats, or the attack instinct of most dogs. None of us ever got bitten, which was lucky, because we were too far from help, with the crude transport of those days to be any use (off-road in a Kombi van!).

    Hope your guys brush up OK - sounds positive, vets see a lot of this.

    Cheers,

    Tim

  17. #17
    wielder of the sword Australdi's Avatar
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    I'm pretty sure Zillah wouldn't be sensible enough to leave a snake alone he's just too prey driven. He will happily spend all day pulling the woodpile apart trying to catch the skinks...to him I suspect a snake would just be a big skink (with fangs) Hopefully I'm far enough down the road from the farms to not have a yard enticing to snakes. Going by the amount of rats and mice I had this winter...there certainly wasn't a snake around then!
    It sounds like they're pulling through ...hopefully tomorrow they'll be up and running around like nothing has happened.
    Aus
    ".....the good health of a pond is held in a delicate balance. A pond's condition
    deteriorates when the bottom environment cannot support animal life.
    The bottom is the area that runs out of oxygen first, it is where the most oxygen is used........"



    '84 fuego GTX
    '87 fuego GTX
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    ....beginning to look a bit frightning isn't it.

  18. #18
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    Thanks all - we've had Artemis try and get up in the last half hour, but the effort exhausted her and she's resting quietly again. Winnie wagged her tail earlier in the evening - and would do it on cue if I called her, which is a pretty dramatic improvement on the previous 24 hours or so.

    Cheers

    Alec

  19. #19
    JBN
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    I lived in Walcha for a year. The New England area of NSW is great country for tiger snakes, browns and red bellied blacks. Fox terriers are good snake dogs in that they are agile, but I would always put my money on a cat, they are closer to a mongoose. Few cats ever get caught out by snakes.

    I've only seen a taipan once in the wild. It really was a long snake, draped over some rocks south of Mt Stuart, Townsville. I remarked to one of my blokes, "They're so long, its hard to tell which end is which". He replied, "Just walk up to it. The head end will be coming at you very quickly". Can't argue with bush logic.

    The western brown (if that's the one in WA) is called a dugite. You see a lot around, including on the roads.

    John

  20. #20
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    Sounds like the odds are looking more in your favor! Great news.

    We had our black lab get into the rat poison, was very scary. Lucky we noticed straight away, and he recovered (with help of meds from the vet) in a couple days.
    Ryan


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  21. #21
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    Icon9 " our thoughts are with you !!! "

    Was saddened to here about this... As we are BIG animal lovers, but we live in the city as well, & we thought our biggest problems were FLEAS !!!
    But it does sound like they're fighters, here's hoping !!!

    Yes we have dogs,cats,birds,fish... even had rabbitts !!!
    No matter what they are FAMILY...
    I always make any new pet entering our family to make a promise, that they will live FOREVER!!!

    Will keep you in the loop about that, as at the moment, hoping for that to be fullfilled !!!

    Anyway, I feel for you, & I think from previous comments, we've all been there..

    All the very best, & our thoughts are with you ...

    Look on the bright side the "Vets" trying !!!

    KEEP US POSTED !!! ( PLEASE... )


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  22. #22
    UFO
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    Alec

    Good to know the dogs are coming good. Hopefully they may learn. Our cat, when we first adopted him, used to like to find the baby snakes around our house in Wollongong (we lived very near the bush). We used to find dead baby snakes in the backyard - not fun, but part of life.

    One week I took a few days off and the cat was very listless - would lick the gravy off his food then lay down and sleep. This went on for about three days and we were a little worried. Then one day VOOM! He was back with a vengance!

    We never saw any more dead snakes either - he obviously learned his lesson. The cat is nearly 15 y/o now and has trouble getting out of his own way besides chasing anything. He's aging disgracefully.

    Hillbilly, our first Golden Retriever chewed on a rat bait block once and we spent five days, a chunk of money at the vet and a lot of angst getting him over that - nasty stuff! Did your vet use lots of vitamin K and charcoal tablets?
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  23. #23
    1000+ Posts catshamlet's Avatar
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    Good look with your dawgs Alec.

    BTW, if any of you animal lovers ever notice AMITO written on the appointment card, you should have a stern word with the writer of same.

    Not that it's ever happened to me of course.




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  24. #24
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    Thanks for all the support froggers. No charcoal, as that is for mopping up poison in the stomach. Don't know about the vitamin K - there have been anumber of injections - but main treatment has been the actual snake anti-venene.

    Some progress overnight - Winnie wriggled off her cushion this morning - but it's all very slow. UFO, I hope they learn like your cat, but these are Jack Russell terriers we are talking about! The implication of course is that cats are smarter .

    Am just about to take them back in to the vet - Winnie in particular must be getting dehydrated, as her drip was ineffective.

    Cheers

    Alec

  25. #25
    1000+ Posts Gamma's Avatar
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    I hope all goes well for the dogs.

    I have lost two to brown snakes in the last two years.
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