The rattlesnake is the only reptile with a rattle and is the best known of the pit vipers. Unfortunately it is also one of the most feared snakes and is often irrationally killed. Rattlesnakes can strike at 1/25th of a second. However, many rattlesnake bites could be avoided if people simply left rattlesnakes alone. It is not uncommon for dogs, cats, horses and other domestic animals to be injured or die from a rattlesnake bite.
Rattlesnakes will make every effort to avoid contact with people. We are far more dangerous to this secretive animal than it is to us. In almost every case, we are treading on the snakes’ home territory when we encounter them, and in almost every case, the rattlesnake loses its life.
Many bites result when someone tries to capture, kill, or handle the snake. The bite is a defensive reaction and should not be considered an act of aggression. The rattlesnake’s rattle is its means of communication and is designed to warn larger animals of its position.
In the United States, humans experience about 8,000 bites from venomous snakes each year. Of those, an average of 12 per year, less than 1%, result in death. Far more people die each year from bee stings, lightning strikes, or almost any other reason. Incidentally, one-third of all rattlesnake bites are “dry” bites, when no venom has been injected.
Snake bite victim, Justin Schwartz knows all too well the severity of a rattlesnake bite! Click to learn about his experience and see the photos.Be warned, the pictures are very graphic, but it’s important for people to know the consequences of a rattlesnake bite.