Active Snake Season Is Here

Active Snake Season Is Here

As the weather begins to warm up in many parts of Australia, snakes are becoming active and our pets are once again at risk!

All snake bites or suspected snake bites in Australia should be treated as life-threatening. It is vital that you keep your pet calm and as still as possible. Try to limit any movement (including walking) where possible and transport them to your nearest veterinary practice immediately, even if they look well. The sooner your pet is treated, the better their chances of survival.

If you are not close to a veterinary clinic and the bite was witnessed to have occurred on a limb, apply a pressure immobilisation bandage to that limb before transporting the animal to a veterinarian. The bandage should cover the entire limb, from the paw to the base of the limb. The pressure bandage should not be applied too tight as to restrict blood flow, but at a similar tightness to what would be applied for a sprained ankle. There is no role for a pressure immobilisation bandage for bites that are not on a limb.

Symptoms of a snake bite include:

☠ Sudden weakness or collapse, which may be followed by transient improvement
☠ Vomiting
☠ Laboured breathing
☠ Paralysis, starting with the hind legs
☠ Loss of bladder and bowel control
☠ Shaking or twitching of the muscles
☠ Blood in the urine
❌ DO NOT try to catch or kill the snake for ID or for any other purpose
❌ DO NOT apply a tourniquet
❌ DO NOT wash the bite site
❌ DO NOT cut, suck or apply any other treatments to the bite-site

If your dog or cat has been bitten or potentially bitten by a snake, immediate veterinary assessment is recommended in all cases. Whilst veterinary treatment of snakebite can be lifesaving, it is costly in many cases. Pet insurance provides peace of mind and protection in the event that your pet is ever bitten. Our platinum sponsor Bow Wow Meow for Pets are currently offering two months free pet insurance in the first year of coverage for Animal Poison Helpline followers. Visit and enter APH368 at checkout to take advantage of this offer.