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Snake Bite

Austin Vet Dog Snake Bite
Spotty, Day 2. Recovering from snake bite. Note two puncture wounds on bridge of nose.

Since we reside in the state of Texas, we see numerous curious dogs who are victims of snake bites each year. Snake bites are considered a veterinary emergency, and these bites can result in serious injury or even death.

Your safety is important to us, so please pay attention to your surroundings as the snakes begin to make their appearance in springtime and continue to stay active in the summer months and into late fall.

If you suspect that your dog has been snake bit, is essential to get your dog to a veterinary hospital as quickly as possible. You can even call us right away at (512) 288-1040!

Venom can cause organ damage and interfere with blood clotting. Swelling of the head can become so severe that it can block a dog’s airway. If a dog has been bitten on the body, the circulatory system can shut down, and organ failure can occur, all within 30 minutes.

Fortunately, the survival rate for snake bite victims has increased due to the following:

1. Availability of rattlesnake vaccine
2. Quick actions by informed pet owners

Rattlesnake Vaccine

We are pleased to offer the canine rattlesnake vaccine. The initial vaccination can be administered at 12 weeks of age. A booster is required 4-6 weeks after the initial vaccination. The vaccine works by stimulating your dog’s immunity to defend against this harmful toxin.

Quick Actions by Owners

Even if your dog has been vaccinated with the rattlesnake vaccine, it should be taken to a veterinarian for evaluation and care if a snake bite is suspected. We can determinate additional treatment if necessary. For example, fluids, and antibiotic treatment may be needed.

Dogs who have not received a rattlesnake vaccine have a more difficult time of recovery; however, bites are still treatable. If your dog has been bitten:

  • Try to identify the snake by taking note of its size, color patterns and the presence of a rattle
  • Look your dog over carefully for fang marks, noting that there may be more than one bite wound
  • Keep your dog as calm and quiet as possible
  • Get to a veterinary hospital for further consultation (come see us!)

Austin Vet Rattlesnake VaccineLearn more about venomous Texas snakes (Helpful information provided by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.)