Dog bitten by 'snake' in North Yorkshire required anti-venom shot

Benji the dog was injured in what was believed to have been a snake bite. Credit: PA / Liz Byrne

A woman from North Yorkshire is warning pet owners and parents in the area to "stay out of long grass" after her dog was bitten by what was believed to be a snake.

Liz Byrne from Richmond took her dog Benji out for a walk around the Swalegate playing field in the town.

Ms Byrne said: "Benji went exploring in the long grass, and I heard him yelp. I thought it might just be a thorn or something, but when I went to see, I heard something hissing.

"It stopped and then started again three times while I was trying to get hold of Benji, and then I saw a flicker in the long grass and its tail. I was petrified - the snake was not."

Ms Byrne told ITV Tyne Tees she then took Benji to the vets after noticing his swollen nose and bite marks.

Benji was given a steroid and anti-venom shot by the vet, who, Ms Byrne said, told them it was "quite unusual" for snakes to get so close to a housing estate.

She is now urging dog walkers and parents to keep their pets and children out of the long grass in the area in case of a repeat incident.

The PSDA advice for when your dog may have been bitten by a snake includes taking it to a vet as soon as possible.

They also say that snake bites are an emergency, and have guidance for owners if they think their pet may have been injured:

  • Snake bites are an emergency – if your dog has been bitten, follow our first aid advice and take them to a vet ASAP.

  • There are three types of snake found in the UK, but adders are the only venomous species.

  • Adder bites tend to happen Feb-Oct but are especially common between Jun-Aug.

  • It's most common for a dog to be bitten on the face, neck or lower leg.

  • With treatment, most dogs recover from adder bites, but some bites are very serious, cause severe illness and even death.

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