As I’m sure most of you that follow me on instagram, twitter, or facebook are already aware. This past weeked I got bit by a snake. If you ask my son, he’s quick to tell you that it was a “dangerous brown cobra” and that he’s planning on dealing w/ him later (true story, out of the blue he said that).
As far as snakes go, I was pretty lucky that this wasn’t a deadly, venomous snake that bit me. I’m pretty confident that the snake was a brown snake (dekays brown snake), my wife and I were actually gardening the weekend prior and came upon a bed of these in our backyard… at our house in Conway. I mean you would totally expect to discover a bed of snakes at our farm or over at our place on the river –but no… right here in the middle of suburban central arkansas w/ houses and people everywhere.
Even though the snake wasn’t poisonous, it did bring blood (not to mention the worst fat boy freestyle gymnastic routine you’ve ever seen). I primarily treated the bite by removing all of the blood and noticed no real distinguishable fang marks or anything. For the most part I think he clamped down and I did so much flailing around and kicking that he may have been ripped from my leg. As far as pain goes, it initially felt like a mosquito bite, and that’s what made me look down. Then it sort of felt like a wasp or bee sting (as best I can remember, my primary concern was to not have a freaking heart attack). Once the bite area started swelling and looking funny I decided to go to the emergency room.
We sat in the emergency room and waited for a while, they were very busy so after about an hour or so I talked my wife into letting me just go home. Heck, if it was a poisonous snake I would already be horizontal and talking to the moon people –and I wasn’t, in fact it didn’t really hurt anymore than a scratch or cut would hurt the entire day. After an hour or two we decided to go to my local doctor because it was starting to look “different”, a small black hole had appeared in the center and there was some swelling occurring around the site. My doctor gave me medicine and told me to keep a very close eye on it because as a diabetic I definitely didn’t need to have an infection, especially on my ankle or near my foot.
Later that evening the hole had doubled (maybe more) and the swelling was starting to get bigger and was way more tender than before so we went to the ER and they gave me the most painful shot I’ve ever had in my life, it hurt well into the next day, I’m serious… but, apparently it did it’s job because the very next morning everything looked a lot different.
I’m going to attach some photos to this post to demonstrate a timeline as to how the bite progressed over time… (see below).
Update: I just heard from a friend that was also bitten by a snake this past weekend. It’s no surprise we have so many sneaking into new areas because their usual habitats have been disturbed as a result of the heavy rains and flooding we have experienced. We have 36 species of snakes in Arkansas, only 6 of those are poisonous. Respect these things, even if they are not poisonous they can still cause infections, etc., especially if you are diabetic. If you can tolerate the non-poisonous ones, good for you, they often have many beneficial characteristics (such as eating the bad snakes). I highly recommend becoming familiar w/ each species and be able to identify them in the event you are bitten so you will be able to let the medical professionals know exactly what they are dealing with. Also, don’t trust that you’ll be able to kill the snake after you are bit, I always thought that —but I was way to busy doing fat boy freestyle gymnastics and he got away. Also, I’m curious as to what everyone uses to repel snakes in their yards?