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Rock Python Kills Dog.

Discussion in 'Herp Awareness' started by Merlin, Sep 20, 2013.

  1. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    We frequently get into discussions about the need for having someone else near when handling larger constrictors.
    And frequently get novices who pipe up that it isn't necessary.
    I saw this this morning!

    Rock Python Kills Full-Grown Husky in Florida
  2. cassicat4

    cassicat4 Subscribed User Premium Member

    I saw that a few days ago. It definitely sounds defensive in nature - there were pictures posted of the dog in the snake's grip, and the snake's head wasn't anywhere near the dog i.e. it doesn't appear to be killing it in an attempt to eat it. Sad that it had to be a rock python of all species though. People not only have to learn to be responsible when handling large constrictors, they have to learn to be responsible with other pets around large constrictors. There are so many careless keepers who forget that no matter how docile your reptile, they're still wild animals at heart, and instincts can take over very quickly. There's a woman who runs a "rescue" up by where I live, and she's been under fire for her practices and pics that she posts - for e.g. one showing her full-grown boa constrictor laying beside her pet cat. She'll be the next one in the news for having a pet killed by a snake, and it'll be the snake that takes the fall, and not her for being irresponsible.

    Although this - "Tragically, an African Rock Python that escaped its cage killed 2 boys in Canada last month." is getting tiring. Allegedly killed the boys. The cause still hasn't been determined, and to keep harping that the cause was definitely the snake only fuels stories like this, and feeds the fire on the "dangers" of snakes.
  3. JSqueezer

    JSqueezer Elite Member

    Such a sad story.

    Whenever we take the Ball Pythons out of their enclosures it doesn't faze the cat at all. She seems more intrigued than anything else. With the Jungle Carpet we have to secure the cat in another room. I really don't think it's safe for either the snake or the cat to "mingle".
  4. Dragoness

    Dragoness Elite Member

    As near as I can tell, the husky wasn't attacked by someone's pet, it was attacked by a wild snake. (Or maybe someone in the area had an unreported escape - which is possible, because Florida regulates ownership of rock pythons, so someone with an illegal one is hardly going to report it missing.)

    The owner of the dog did not own the snake - so it isn't like he was being irresponsible with a large constrictor, and ended up with a dead dog as a result. At this point, it is no different to me than if the dog had been killed by a wild boar, a bear, an alligator, or any other animal. Certainly not the dogs fault, and not the owners, but just something that happens from time to time.
  5. JSqueezer

    JSqueezer Elite Member

    Oh I know! I still feel really bad when domestic animals fall prey to wild animals.
  6. DwarvenChef

    DwarvenChef Elite Member

    I FULLY agree that big snakes should be handled with a group of people ready to assist. My 14 wild caught burm, easy twice the girth of a typical CB burm, was heavy enough to choke me just hanging on my shoulders. I almost passed out a few times just in the time it took to get her off me (solo handling when I was "Immortal youth").

    Big snakes need to be kept by experienced handlers, period...
    Karma Momma likes this.
  7. cassicat4

    cassicat4 Subscribed User Premium Member

    Don't get me wrong; I'm not blaming the owner. However, I'm also not targeting the snake either, as the reaction may have purely been defensive on its part:

    10-foot-long Python Crushed Family Dog to Death [video]

    The point I was trying to make is that if you live in an area prone to having a certain type of predator around - in Florida, large constrictors, for example, you do need to be cautious even around animals that are not known for going out of their way to attack and kill pets. And if the animal IS known for hunting down small animals as prey, you have to be especially careful. In British Columbia, for example, there are several towns/cities that have notorious cougar problems, and residents have lost pet dogs even on leashes to these cats. Many residents also wake up some mornings and find bears wandering their yards or porches. It's certainly not the owner's fault if they're surprised during a routine dog-walking moment by a cougar attack...but knowing the risks means extra precautions possibly could have been taken. As a pet owner, you always have to be aware of your surroundings and the risks, especially now, when invasive species are becoming more prevalent. Florida is known lately for having Burmese and Rock Pythons frequenting certain areas. Knowing this, you have to be very cautious with your pets. For the snake to strike and kill that fast even under the supervision of the family is proof of the capabilities of these large snakes, and wild or domesticated, you need to be very careful and treat these species with respect.
  8. Dragoness

    Dragoness Elite Member

    I think this sums it up quite nicely. :)
  9. diehardislanders

    diehardislanders Elite Member

    That does not mean at all that the snake was not trying to eat it. My pythons will sit for a long time with their prey in their grasp without their head on it after they deem their prey dead. From reading the article, and seeing the pictures, I drew the opposite conclusion and thought the snake entered the back yard and sought out the dog. Regardless, it is a sad story, the impact of which is regrettably compounded due to the fact that an invasive species was involved.
  10. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    I was not implying that this was a case of an irresponsible owner. Just a demonstration of how much power these animals have. People often go on about how "the snake isn't big enough that I need to have someone else present".
  11. bucher70

    bucher70 Elite Member

    Well written article. I will say I have limited experience with large constrictors, But I do work with dogs and cats at my place of employment . In my experience, the moment you become too comfortable, is the moment that injury happens. I feel this translates well over to other animals, including large constrictors.
  12. EyeOfHorus

    EyeOfHorus Well-Known Member

    If I remember correctly, the 2 boys death`s are being investigated as a homicide. Meaning, the snake didn't do it.
    2013 New Brunswick python attack - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    "Court records revealed that the pet shop owner was found pacing outside of the store with blood on his hands and shorts by police who first arrived on the scene. Contrary to prior reports, the store owner told arriving police that the snake was still unaccounted for, leaving one to speculate whether the blood belonged to the boys or was his own (due to being bitten by the "enraged" snake or cut by debris from the collapsed ceiling)."

    Things are fishy no doubt.

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