Jo-Carroll Dennison is happy that her small dog, Tommy, is alive. Dennison lives in Pine Cove where Tommy, the Bichon Frise-mix was bitten on the side of his jaw by a rattlesnake on Tuesday, July 1. Dennison indicated that the snake was about 4-1/2 feet long.
Dennison rushed Tommy to the Banning Animal Hospital where Dr. Jennifer Barton administered the antivenin immediately. “He was paralyzed almost at once after being bitten,” Dennison said. “I called the Banning veterinarian and raced down there.” Tommy was still conscious when the antivenin was administered.
According to William Hayes, professor of biology and director of the Center for Biodiversity and Conservation Studies at Loma Linda University, any number of factors could explain why the bite was not fatal, including the location of the bite, the size of the animal, and the amount of venom transmitted in the bite.
Now at home, Tommy’s face is still a bit swollen and he is somewhat lethargic, according to Dennison. “I’m very happy that [Tommy] survived the attack,” she said. “He won’t go anywhere near where the snake bit him.”