Wednesday, 13 May 2009

Village Dog Gets Bitten By Adder

Jake, a retired Greyhound was bitten by an adder while out on a walk with his owner yesterday. They were on the coastal path, Cudden side, when the incident happened.

Jake's owner, Karl said,
"I was walking on the dirt track and Jake was walking right beside me on the grass. He suddenly let out a yelp, I turned to look at him and he was holding his back leg off the ground. First I thought he had trodden on something but it then became obvious it was more than that. He laid on the floor and started kicking his back leg out as if he was trying to get something off. I inspected his foot and leg but could see nothing ."

Karl took Jake to an emergency vet in Truro where he was given a cocktail of drugs which includes Steroids, Antihistamine, Antibiotics and an Opiate based pain killer. He was kept in overnight and this morning has been transferred to a vet in Penzance where he is being kept on a drip to help flush out any toxins left in his body. Although distressed and in some pain Karl said Jake is doing fine and he looks forward to picking him up later today.

The adder is not an aggressive snake, it strikes only in self-defence when it feels threatened. They have a pair of fangs which inject an efficient and fast-acting poison. In an emergency they bite and flee so the victim may never know what bit them.

Adder venom is extremely unpleasant and can be very damaging to the affected area so any suspicion of an adder-bite should lead to medical attention as soon as possible.

For smaller animals like dogs and cats any inexplicable pain or swelling, especially in spring when adders awake from hibernation, should be seen by a vet as soon as possible.

Adders are very sensitive to vibration so the best way to make sure your path is clear is to carry a stick and occasional beat the ground in front of you with it.

Male Adder

Female Adder

For more information on Adders click here:


  1. If it's cold when adders come out they are slow to react and don't catch warnings of people animals et quickly enough and that's when they strike, otherwise they can't wait to get out of our way...and who can blame them!!!! Anyway hope Jake makes good progress.

  2. I would like to say a big thankyou to the people who opened their gardens on Sunday. Best day out and the food was superb !!! Val--Helston