Snakes on the move


With summer fast approaching, reptile experts are warning residents to be on high alert for an extreme snake season.

It comes after a recent spike of bites to pets.

Jake Duke reports.

TRANSCRIPT

We’re six weeks out from the start of summer but already snakes like these are on the move.

The Brisbane Veterinary Specialist Centre has recorded 10 bites to pets in the past month that’s a 20% jump on this time last year.

Dr Rod Straw, Brisbane Veterinary Centre : “I think we are seeing a build up in the snake numbers over the last few years and so with the increase at the start of the snake season we anticipate it will just get worse as it peaks around November.”

Dr Straw says there are a number of symptoms pet owners can look out for if they suspect their animal has been bitten.

These include wobbliness in walking, unexplained bleeding, dark urine, changes in voice, difficulty breathing and pale or purple gums.

But Dr Straw says snakes aren’t the only threat this summer, with a number of pets with tick related illnesses already being hospitalised. He says early specialist treatment for both types of bites are the best course of action.

Dr Rod Straw: “Well ticks and snakes go hand in glove. That’s the same time of the year and actually sometimes the signs are very similar and the vets are able to determine which it is.

And according to chief snake keeper at Alma Park Zoo, training your pet can keep them safe and healthy.

Alison Wright, Alma Park Zoo: “One really good thing is, especially with dogs, they are very curious, is to start to teach them, even from an early age not to go near snakes. You use rubber snakes, things like that and hopefully they learn not to go near them.

Jake Duke, QUT News.