An uninvited visitor can be disruptive or downright annoying, but can they also be dangerous? You bet when it comes to snakes. Venomous and nonvenomous snakes are common to our area and sightings aren’t always on trails and in wild places, but in our yards and gardens, garages and patios. Snakes know no artificial boundaries, so they just go where they are able to thrive, and the backyard can seem inviting.

Unfortunately, if you are a pet owner, this wild encounter can be deadly for your furry loved one. Keeping your pet safe from snakes is what the team at Sunrise Boulevard Animal Hospital is aimed to do. We’re here to give you some tips to keep the slithering guests away from your home and yard. Let’s explore!

How to Discourage Snakes from Coming into the Yard

Since a “Go away snakes!” sign on the gate outside isn’t going to work, what do you do about keeping snakes out? The key to snake safety is to make the home and yard less inviting to them. 

  1. Cut down all overgrown weeds and grasses where snakes hide.
  2. Cover any openings under the home or deck to keep them from making a home there.
  3. Remove debris, like discarded boards, concrete blocks, or other items.
  4. Stack firewood in the garage, rather than outside.
  5. Keep bushes trimmed and lawn mowed.

Basically, maintain a good view of the yard and garden, since snakes don’t like to be uncovered and seen. 

Protecting Your Pet from Snakes

As much as people love to loathe them, snakes don’t deserve a bad rap. They are simply just trying to survive like any other species. Snakes bite when they feel threatened or attacked. The solution to bite avoidance is to teach your dog to steer clear of them. If you are outdoors with your dog often, rattlesnake aversion class is an excellent way to train your pet to avoid snake encounters. Some trainers can teach your dog with one session, while others offer multiple classes and refresher courses.

It’s also important to supervise your dog while outside, if snakes have been sighted in the area. Being outside with your pet is another good way to enjoy some time together and discourage your pet from any other behaviors that can cause them to be at risk, such as escaping or eating toxic plants.

There is also a rattlesnake vaccine that is available to dogs who spend a lot of time outdoors. It doesn’t stop the venom from causing harm, but it slows down the process and lessens the severity of the symptoms.

If Your Pet Is Bitten by a Snake

If your pet has been bitten by a snake (even if you think it might be nonvenomous), they need to be examined right away. Call us to arrange for an emergency appointment or go to the nearest emergency veterinary hospital. 

Do not apply a tourniquet to the bite site or try to remove the venom, but you can apply a bandage and some pressure. Since time is of the essence in a snake bite emergency, act quickly, getting your pet to safety while keeping them as calm as possible and call us.

Other Ideas to Keep Your Pet Safe from Snakes

In our region of California, keeping your pet safe from snakes is even a backyard matter. No matter where you happen to be, keep a watch on your dog during snake season and have them leashed when hiking. If you have any questions about snake safety, or would like to schedule an appointment, please contact us.