Rattlesnakes Slither into SoCal Neighborhoods

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LA CAÑADA FLINTRIDGE, Calif. (KTLA) — The temperature isn’t the only thing going up in Southern California.

The number of snakes slithering into neighborhoods is also increasing.

In La Cañada Flintridge a number of families told KTLA 5 News, they’ve already crossed paths with several Rattlesnakes. The dangerous reptiles have neighbors worried for their pets.

Veterinarians say rattlesnakes can be bad news for curious dogs.

“Typically [dogs] are going to get bitten around the muzzle, near the eyes, or possibly on their feet,” Rosemont Veterinary Hospital’s Dr. Kate O’Dwyer said.

O’Dwyer says she’s seen the number of snake attacks on her furry patients explode in the past year.

“It varies in the size, breed, and age of the dogs,” she said. “Luckily all of their owners brought them to us quickly so they all survived.

Catching some fresh outdoor air in La Canada Flintridge with his best friend, Dalmatian Roxy, Eric Ek told KTLA rattlesnakes are a major concern in his neighborhood.

“I’ve seen one up the street in the middle of the road. So they’re out here,” Ek said

It can take a lot of work to protect yourself from snakes. Some neighbors are using chicken wire planted in the ground to fence off their property, but still the snakes get through.

If a rattler does manage to sink his fangs into your pet, you could have to shell out some major cash to save your friend’s life.

“A single vial of anti-venom can cost as much as $800, and some dogs needs multiple treatments,” O’Dwyer said.

When the final medical bill came for one  snake victim family KTLA spoke with, it was nearly $7,000 to treat their dog.

Some pet owners says they would pay anything to help their companions.

“Yeah, it would be tough, but I would do what I have to do,” Ek said as he walked with Roxy.

When on a walk, your best defense against rattlesnakes is to watch where you step, keep your dog on a leash, and keep an ear out for that unmistakable rattle.

If your pet gets bitten by a snake, you want to call your veterinary center before you go.

Many clinics don’t carry the anti-venom necessary, and the ones that do need time to prepare it.

The more notice you can give your vet, the better the outcome will be for your pet.

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