It was quite the scare for a Westfield woman. Her dog was bitten twice by a rattlesnake in a backyard near East Mountain Road.
She said she wants her neighbors to know that rattlesnakes are out there.
The dog’s swelling has gone down since he was bitten last night, but the next couple of days will be critical.
His owners are keeping a close watch on him and his condition.
“We were outside cooking dinner, we were just grilling chicken, and he went out to go poop in our backyard, and as he was going, the snake came up and got him twice in the face. He has one on his cheek and one right under his eye,” said Bethany Smith.
Bethany Smith, dog mom of three and human mom of two, told Western Mass News that it was one of the scariest moments of her life.
“Within fifteen minutes, the white under his eye went up and over his eye, so he couldn’t see. He was trying to walk, he kept falling over to his side, he was trying to breathe, heavy panting.”
Four-year-old Bruiser, a Boston terrier-pug mix, is recuperating.
Bethany took him to an emergency veterinarian clinic where he was given fluids.
“Today we’re left with this amount of swelling. He’s fairly lethargic today.”
Bethany said that in the last year she’s started to notice rattlesnakes in her backyard.
“In 30 something years I’d never seen one and all of a sudden, the last couple weeks, we’ve been seeing them everywhere.”
We asked Westfield’s Animal Control officer, but have not heard back.
Across the region, there has been an ongoing debate about rattlesnakes - where they should be bred and where they should live.
“We have this beautiful backyard. We eat dinner out there, we cook out there, we play out there, We do everything out there. Stay near me, and this was near me.”
Bethany told Western Mass News that for now, she’s focused on Bruiser’s well-being.
“I still don’t know what his outcome is going to be. Just watch him for the next 72 hours. But just watch your kids, keep your babies close.”
The bond between this woman and her dog was obvious, as she started to cry off-camera, telling us how difficult the last day has been, and the dog immediately began comforting her.
We’ll be sure to update you on the dog’s condition.
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