Spring is here, and so are snakes!

We’re seeing our first snake bites of the season! Are you prepared for spring in the Ozarks?

If you frequently hike or otherwise enjoy the great outdoors with your pet, please take care to prevent painful encounters with snakes. Bites occur most often in between March and October when snakes are most active. According to the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (APCC), a snake bite is always considered an emergency—a venomous snake bite can be fatal if not treated immediately, and even a bite from a nonvenomous snake can be dangerous for your pets.

The APCC would like to offer the following tips for snake bite safety around pets:

Avoid chance encounters with snakes:

  • Keep your yard tidy by clearing away undergrowth, toys and tools that make great hiding places for snakes.

  • Keep walkways clear of brush, flowers and shrubs.

  • Clean up any spilled food, fruit or bird seed, which can attract rodents—and therefore snakes—to your yard.

  • When walking your pet, keep him on a leash.

  • Steer your pet clear of long grasses, bushes and rocks.

  • Snakes can strike across a distance equal to about half their body length. If you see a snake, head back the way you came.

  • Familiarize yourself with snakes who are common in your area. In the event of a bite, identifying the type of snake may help with your pet’s treatment.

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