Spring is here! We love the beautiful landscape in full bloom, the promise of warm nights, hiking and being outdoors with the dogs. But the one thing we don't welcome with the changing of the seasons each Spring is the appearance of rattlesnakes. Every year in the United States alone, over 150,000 dogs and cats are bitten by venomous snakes, making them 300 times more likely to be bitten by a venomous snake than to contract rabies.
Dogs are naturally curious, an inquisitive dog and a rattlesnake can be a deadly combination. So this past weekend the rebel pups attended Rattlesnake Avoidance Training at Cool Dog Training.
How does it work? Trained snake handlers place hooded snakes in various locations on a rural property and then walk each dog through the course. The dog is allowed to smell, hear, and see the snakes, but never touch them. They will learn to associate the smell, sight, and sound of a rattlesnake with "bad". So in the future after going through the clinic, if the dog encounters a rattlesnake, it will not only avoid the snake but also alert its owner to the snakes presence.
Is it safe? Absolutely! Each rattlesnake is hooded, so there is no way for it to bite.
How long does it take? Each dog is rotated through the course twice, to assure they understand the association. The process generally takes under an hour and is an invaluable tool to protect your dog.