Pet owners are being warned to be careful as warmed weather increases the risk of snake bites.
The Australian Veterinary Association (AVA) is encouraging animal owners to take precautions to help minimise the risk of snake bites and seek immediate veterinary advice if they suspect their animal has has been bitten by a snake.
AVA President, Dr Paula Parker, said that snakes tend to be their most active at the end of the day.
“Snake bites often occur in the late afternoon or early evening, however it’s important for people to be vigilant throughout the day,” she said.
Dr Parker said that snakes found in backyards are usually looking for mice or rats to eat.
Signs of snake bite can vary depending on the snake and the location in Australia. Common signs of a snake bite include:
- Sudden weakness followed by collapse
- Unexplained bleeding or swelling
- Reluctance or inability to walk
- Breathing problems.
Bites from some snakes will cause an animal to collapse, and then seem to recover. This can give false confidence that the animal is okay, but what is really happening is the snake toxins are spreading through the system and wreaking havoc. Within a few hours, other signs start to develop.
“If you think your animal has been bitten, keep your pet calm and contact your vet immediately. The chances of recovery are much greater if treatment is delivered early,” Dr Parker said.