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I don't care for antibiotics, but the immune system IS under attack because this is basically a huge onslaught for them. A suppressed immune system will easily allow a secondary infection to start.

I don't give them, until I see an infection, but I do understand why someone would want to. Hugs. I can't help you make this decision. Hugs again.
 
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THIS video is a great comparison of what people might see
 

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Out of curiosity - how do we know these are copperhead bites versus any other snake species?
That's a great question. Answering for my posts, I'm going by the fact that copperheads are by FAR the most numerous venomous snakes in my area, and by the relatively weak venom. Cottonmouths are much more aggressive and they are rare enough that the officials insist they aren't here. I do see Timber Rattlers, they are large and yes, they are poisonous, but they are so very calm and practically just lay there and DARE anyone to bother them. Since they insist on getting my attention by rattling, it's very difficult for me to step on one by accident.

So, that's how I know mine have been copperheads. I've been bitten plenty of times by nonvenomous snakes, because I've always been fascinated by snakes, but as a child I wasn't very respectful of them. I've gotten infections from the bites, but not the swelling and dangerous illness that comes along with a venomous bite.
 

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Well, cats have filthy mouths...

I've never seen a snakebite on one of my goats until this year. This year seems truly different in a lot of ways.

A venomous snake bite starts swelling within moments and has an intense burning sensation that causes distress long after the mere bite would. The swelling is at the initial wound first and travels toward the heart along with the normal bloodflow. Non venomous snakebites don't seem to act in that manner, nothing seems to travel toward the heart causing grotesque swelling at the chest. The venomous bite, if not a dry bite, will usually cause a rotting away of the skin and flesh at the wound, at least slightly. Nonvenomous bites don't seem to cause that either.

Some water snakes have acted aggressively toward us, and since they are much faster in the water than we are have been quite frightening at times. But nonvenomous land snakes would rather scurry away than lay in wait. Unless the goats are truly careless, they aren't likely to trap a garter snake enough to cause a bite. Copperheads won't scurry, they want us to leave, but will not willingly leave themselves, so can be easily trodden upon.

Some people here have experience with much more aggressive rattlesnakes. Since I don't, I don't want to talk about how they behave. The ones we have, I'd have to go out of my way to experience a bite from them. Since I don't like going out of my way for anyone, I never expect that to happen.

Hope that helps...
 

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Discussion Starter #31
A couple of shots of Banamine would help that swelling.
Oral Benadryl will also help.
Edit... I see you've mentioned Dex. Sorry. Nevermind.
We are doing Benadryl 3 times a day in addition to the Dex. Petey ctually sucks it down like a baby bottle from the syringe. Cute as can be. We are starting the stepdown process today on the Dex ----aaaaand, I had to come in a start on the bookwork, but my husband said Petey jogged to join the herd outside so I think he's turned his corner :)
 

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Discussion Starter #32
Hmmm okay I have no snake bite knowledge but just know how fast a cat bite can swell up and become very serious infection while not poisonous so I was wondering what a non-venomous versus venomous snake bite was going to look like on a goat.
On Brute it looked like 2 faint scratches fang distance apart. My oldest son loves snakes so that was his assessment. Now Petey, we have never found the spot where he got bit, although we did see a few VERY small blood smears on his leg. According to the research I did (because I must admit to being doubtful that it was a snake without proof. We also have every type of hornet and cow killer's (ants?). I found a description that mentions the swelling from a snake bite is immediate and you can watch it swell (which we could see!!!! On both goats the swelling was hard and fast and went from hock to shoulder on Brute and on Petey it included a HUGE amount of swelling on his chest. Within 30 minutes on Brute--because I saw him run into the barn, but couldn't figure out how he got hurt. He wouldn't let me touch him and I had to get my husband. Within those 30 minutes his leg swelled 3 times the size and his shoulder as well. Couldn't put weight on his leg. With Petey, our estimate was an hour maybe a little more before we found him hiding under one of the benches in the barn and the initial picture I posted on this thread was the way we found him. That same post I found on the internet mentioned that the swelling was so intense, that you may not see the bite as it swells shut and hence very little bleeding. We figured Petey licked it off...or most of it. We found no signs of infection in either goat. They never stopped eating, drinking, pooping and peeing and we checked on them virtually every hour throughout the day...

"You may or may not see the actual bite, they will swell shut quickly, often no blood will be seen. You will notice extreme pain in the general area and swelling......you can WATCH it swell." Original Post from a site called: backyardherds.com
 

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Discussion Starter #33
Out of curiosity - how do we know these are copperhead bites versus any other snake species?
I didn't see this question...

So, in fairness, since we have both rattlesnakes (timber and black) and copperheads we made the assumption based on the fact that a rattlesnake bite would have killed them (that is according to my son. He's the snake "expert".) It's also based on the fact that we've killed 2 copperheads in that past 2 weeks. One near our garage and one near our mailbox. In the 4 years that we've lived here we've only killed 2 poisonous snakes, both copperheads (one near the garage and one out in the woods when we were working on a food plot in March.)

That, and the vet felt the same based on the description we gave of the incident and the pictures (I met her at the clinic during emergency hours because it was SO hot she decided it would be too traumatic to take Brute to her that day).

Excellent questions!!! I'm glad this info is getting out for others. I was distraught and caught off guard and the internet, as well as a knowledgeable kid and a PHENOMINAL vet who trusted us with the Dex and Penicilin, detailed instructions, etc. Without all these puzzle pieces coming together, Brute at least may have died. I can say with certainty, God has been with us seeing us through! We've had a rough go for our first try at having goats!
 

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Discussion Starter #34
Lol. Copperheads are maily amphibian and fish eaters. Not many frogs in your part of the States, I imagine!

We have Timber Rattlers here, They are the tamest rattlesnakes in the world I think. I walked around one the other day. It coiled up and rattled until it saw that I saw it, then it just waited for me to go away like I was supposed to.
We have more frogs than I can deal with, probably, hence the copperheads!
 
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