Snake avoidance.....

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Snake avoidance.....

Postby Willie T » Mon Aug 06, 2018 6:54 am

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I made the 4 1/2 hour one way drive to take Cricket to a snake avoidance clinic yesterday. I think it was time well spent. The dogs were all conditioned to avoid rattlesnakes. After that was complete and Cricket was making good decisions regarding rattlesnakes. It was reinforced using both cottonmouth and copperhead. At the first encounter he waded right in and was struck. He would have been bitten. Afterward he wanted no part of a snake and clearly made good decisions. Time will tell how how lasting it is.
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Re: Snake avoidance.....

Postby Texasphez » Mon Aug 06, 2018 7:56 am

I plan on taking Case to a clinic next Saturday in Amarillo. We went last year, but they ended up canceling the deal the morning of due to thunderstorms and rain the night before. Kinda hope that happens again! :D
So far we have been lucky and have avoided any run ins with mister rattler, but every dog I've had prior to him has been bitten, so wanting to get this done!
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Re: Snake avoidance.....

Postby AverageGuy » Mon Aug 06, 2018 10:34 am

I could not find anything that did not involve long distance travel to get some snake avoidance training, and so failed to do so. Will be getting the vaccine and hoping for the best this season and try again to address next summer ...

Going to SD to pickup a road killed porkie in my buddies freezer, sometime this month and do some work on that here at home. I am more worried about the porkies than the rattlesnakes but both concern me. Without some more avoidance training Spud will be a disaster when we run into a porkie...
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Re: Snake avoidance.....

Postby Willie T » Mon Aug 06, 2018 10:58 am

Texasphez wrote:I plan on taking Case to a clinic next Saturday in Amarillo. We went last year, but they ended up canceling the deal the morning of due to thunderstorms and rain the night before. Kinda hope that happens again! :D
So far we have been lucky and have avoided any run ins with mister rattler, but every dog I've had prior to him has been bitten, so wanting to get this done!


I had never had a dog get bit before the old one I still have. It has been bitten on three separate occasions.....hopefully Cricket will have a better track record.
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Re: Snake avoidance.....

Postby Willie T » Mon Aug 06, 2018 12:23 pm

AverageGuy wrote:I could not find anything that did not involve long distance travel to get some snake avoidance training, and so failed to do so. Will be getting the vaccine and hoping for the best this season and try again to address next summer ...

Going to SD to pickup a road killed porkie in my buddies freezer, sometime this month and do some work on that here at home. I am more worried about the porkies than the rattlesnakes but both concern me. Without some more avoidance training Spud will be a disaster when we run into a porkie...


That is never pretty when it goes down. Cricket WAS a disaster last fall when he met up with a porky.....
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Re: Snake avoidance.....

Postby Kiger2 » Mon Aug 06, 2018 7:34 pm

Few weeks ago I took my daughter down to SE oregon with the horses to some riding. first 5 minutes from camp my mustang walks across the top of one. Doesn't rattle until its underneath me. He did a little hitch to the right and would have kept going if I didn't stop him. Rattlesnake that dont rattle when a horse is coming gets dead real quick. in three miles we saw 4. Reminds why I never hunt chukars until november.

Wifes Cocker ran over the top of one once. It was too cold to strike. Hate snakes. Hate prokies worse, they dont hibernate.
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Re: Snake avoidance.....

Postby JONOV » Tue Aug 07, 2018 11:08 am

AverageGuy wrote:I could not find anything that did not involve long distance travel to get some snake avoidance training, and so failed to do so. Will be getting the vaccine and hoping for the best this season and try again to address next summer ...

Going to SD to pickup a road killed porkie in my buddies freezer, sometime this month and do some work on that here at home. I am more worried about the porkies than the rattlesnakes but both concern me. Without some more avoidance training Spud will be a disaster when we run into a porkie...


I've heard enough stories about dogs that have been avoidance trained, but it isn't that they "challenge" or "hunt" the snake, it seems like they get bit incidentally.
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Re: Snake avoidance.....

Postby AverageGuy » Tue Aug 07, 2018 12:06 pm

Yes I was in elk camp when a GSP puppy got bit just that way. High on her shoulder while running through cover. She had been vaccinated, got pretty sick but came through ok.

But there is also a percentage of bites to the head when the dog is curious and goes in ...
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Re: Snake avoidance.....

Postby Willie T » Tue Aug 07, 2018 5:45 pm

The really high prey drive dogs, though not actively hunting snakes, investigate what they smell, when they see movement, boom, they are on it. Porky, skunk, snake, or possum. It's not premeditated, it's just the way they are wired. That's what you hope to short stop with snake avoidance. Much the same as trash breaking. Vaccine is about the only help I know of for incidental contact.
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Re: Snake avoidance.....

Postby ANick » Wed Aug 08, 2018 8:08 pm

Willie T wrote:The really high prey drive dogs, though not actively hunting snakes, investigate what they smell, when they see movement, boom, they are on it. Porky, skunk, snake, or possum. It's not premeditated, it's just the way they are wired. That's what you hope to short stop with snake avoidance. Much the same as trash breaking. Vaccine is about the only help I know of for incidental contact.
Willie


I have yet to run into a real live test of the 'snake breaking' with mine. I'm really not in a rush to collect those data points. However, I did put Herself through the course this Spring. Three stations for sight, scent and sound, seemed to nip Curiosity in the bud. Once clear of the snakes, she was her usual, lively self. So, as far as unintended consequences of the event impacting general attitude, training or 'other', I have to say she's unaffected.

For reference, Dot trains at home usually on a 1 or 2 Low with the Garmin 550, maybe stepping up to 3 low if she is really got her game face on for training days.

Anyway, we also got the first vaccination then and did get the follow up booster (between 3 and 4 weeks after the initial, Doc and literature on it was adamant on the time limits) later.

The downside of the snake break and vaccination seems to be very minor, the upside *may* save some real time pain and anguish.

I'd do it again in a heart beat. Probably will do a repeat of the snake break periodically (annually) just to keep that fresh.
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Re: Snake avoidance.....

Postby AverageGuy » Sat Aug 25, 2018 7:31 am

Two full days of driving but we gave Spud a very rude introduction to a rattlesnake yesterday. The guy who did it started by holding the rattler behind the head and cutting off its fangs with small scissors on his multi-tool, then he sewed each side of the mouth shut which his wife assisted with.

We ran 6-7 DKs, couple of GSPs and a couple of GWPs through. Lots of vocalizing. I did not enjoy it at all, Spud even less. Hope it took. Brought back a frozen porky so more similar work to do, but going to wait a little bit for that. SD looked good, got Spud a couple of runs on the prairie while we were there and that part was fun at least.
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Re: Snake avoidance.....

Postby Drahthaar1108 » Sat Aug 25, 2018 8:04 pm

I wish I could take Gus to a snake avoidance class, but it is out of the question, way to far to drive.
Does anyone know how much a snake vaccination cost , first shot and follow up ? Forrest
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Re: Snake avoidance.....

Postby AverageGuy » Sat Aug 25, 2018 8:07 pm

I paid almost $300 the first dog I vaccinated 8-9 years ago because I was the only person my vet at the time had requesting it. I paid $20 the last 3 seasons from a different vet who buys and sells the vaccine at a much larger volume level.
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Re: Snake avoidance.....

Postby Drahthaar1108 » Sun Aug 26, 2018 5:35 pm

AG, Thank you sir. wow large difference in price. Forrest
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Re: Snake avoidance.....

Postby huntinmo » Mon Aug 27, 2018 12:28 am

Drahthaar1108 wrote:AG, Thank you sir. wow large difference in price. Forrest

I looked into the pricing a couple of years ago when I could not find it locally. I don't remember numbers, but for a vet to order it there is a fairly large minimum order from the manufacturer and it has to be shipped in a cold pack of some sort and it has a fairly short shelf life (less than a year so only good for one season), so if only one client wants it there would be a substantial initial investment to cover. Apparently the only vets that stock it, and have reasonable prices, are those in the states with a lot of western diamondbacks. :(
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