Sunday, June 11, 2006

Copperhead Road


On my way back from Asheville, I received a frantic call from Charlie. During the puppy open house, two of the puppies wandered under some bushes and one was bitten by a venomous snake. The puppy was bitten on his nose. Charlie rushed the puppy to the Mt. Pleasant emergency clinic where he received IV fluids, benedryl, steroids, and antibiotics. He left the puppy at the clinic for overnight observation. He got home and found that another puppy had been bitten on the ear. He called as he was on his way to take that puppy to the E clinic. I was very upset and worried as I was in Columbia when I got the call and on my way home.

Wadmalaw has a lot of snakes, largely because it is undeveloped and there are lots of woods and wetlands about. We routinely find copperheads and Charlie was bitten by one on the ankle last year. Fortunately, the puppies that were bitten will be fine and can be picked up in the AM. We are extremely vigilant about watching the babies and keeping them from being near the woods. It is the time of year when venomous snakes are feeding and enjoying the warmth of the days. It is just unfortunate that the babies had to encounter a bad snake.

A word to the wise about dogs and snakes: Be very careful in wooded areas or in areas where there is pine straw. Snakes love to crawl under pine straw. Treat your puppy as you would an infant. They are innocent creatures who want to explore. Hopefully, these two puppies will have learned a valuable lesson. I've learned that it's best for me to be around when the puppies are out and about as they are simply at the age where they need a bit of "corralling" .

I'm tired after a long drive home and lots of anxiety over the pups. I'm up at 6 AM to drive to Mt. Pleasant to get them and bring them home. I'm sure that they will enjoy being back with their siblings after this journey along Copperhead Road.


flamingo3 said...

It is fortunate that the little pup will be ok. Hopefully he will bounce right back and be the joyful and playful.
Your snake story is a good lesson for all pet owners. Pups are just so inquistive and must be watched. But even the older/wiser dog can get into trouble. They are after dogs that have a natural inquistive nature and they are hunters.
Your background gives you such a greater knowledge of what to do in an emergency. It would be wise for all pet owners to take the time to learn basis first aid for their dogs/cats.

Meir said...

I read the puppies' encounter with the snakes with concern. I hope by now they're OK and home.