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Arizona is paradise during the winter. Reasonable temps, sunny days, loads of absolutely beautiful desert that, for some strange reason, sees very few hikers. Cerb and I relish the off lead hikes.

 

Then one of the Four Horsemen of Spring raises it's triangular head; Cerb encountered his first rattler of the year today and dad just about gave cesarean birth to a bovine...without an epidural. He really must have sensed my fear because he shot back to my side, tail, head and ears down. I really have GOT to get him snake aversion training...although I think he had his first lesson today.

 

 

The Four Horsemen of Spring in AZ:

 

Heat (the first 90 degree day)

Allergies (all the foreign plants blooming)

Exiting Snowbirds (taking their fat Canadian dollars with them)

Snakes (we got a bunch!)

 

The Summer Apocalypse is almost upon us and Heaven (the Colorado Rockies) is so far away.

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... (the first 90 degree day)

The time to whine is not when the daily maximum crosses 90F; it's when the night time lows fail to cross 100F.

 

I thought yesterday was really nice; especially as we were let off from work early because they were struggling to get the A/C working.

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One of the pleasures of winter is being able to walk in the paddocks without worrying about snakes.

 

I was horrified early this summer, when I was opening the yard gate and looked down to see an Eastern Brown Snake that had been killed by one of my dogs. I'm not certain which dog, but Bluey looked very smug. He was a very lucky boy, as Eastern Brown Snakes are said to be the second most deadly snake species in the world.

 

 

First aid for Australian snakebite (to the limbs) is pressure bandaging and immobilisation. In theory, it buys you enough time to get yourself (or your dog) to hospital or vet. As I understand it, pressure bandaging for rattlesnake bite has not been recommended, because of the fear of local tissue damage; bites from many Australian snakes are rapidly lethal but cause very little local tissue damage. However, some recent experimental studies suggest benefits from pressure bandaging for rattlesnake envenomation. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19888893

 

Kerry

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One of the pleasures of winter is being able to walk in the paddocks without worrying about snakes.

 

I was horrified early this summer, when I was opening the yard gate and looked down to see an Eastern Brown Snake that had been killed by one of my dogs. I'm not certain which dog, but Bluey looked very smug. He was a very lucky boy, as Eastern Brown Snakes are said to be the second most deadly snake species in the world.

 

 

First aid for Australian snakebite (to the limbs) is pressure bandaging and immobilisation. In theory, it buys you enough time to get yourself (or your dog) to hospital or vet. As I understand it, pressure bandaging for rattlesnake bite has not been recommended, because of the fear of local tissue damage; bites from many Australian snakes are rapidly lethal but cause very little local tissue damage. However, some recent experimental studies suggest benefits from pressure bandaging for rattlesnake envenomation. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19888893

 

Kerry

 

 

I'll have to take a look at that...for me too. I work out in the bush, tromping down wilderness trails and along stream banks. I can't count the number of times I've stepped over, or almost on, rattle snakes. A compilation of my "snake dance" moves would look like a highlight real from the Ministry of Funny Walks. I had to kill one in our back yard last year before it went to ground under our daughter's play house. I hated to do it but it was a foot away from hiding in a spot we couldn't get to, and all I had at hand was a hoe. DW thinks a mongoose would be a swell pet.

Cerb never gets off lead outside of the dog park during summer in the desert. I know he hates it, but it's my job to protect him from stuff evolution may not have prepared him for.

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Now I know why I love living where I do...I'll put up with the cold winters because I don't have to worry about poisonous anything! Of course, blackflies and mosquitos are annoying..but I can wear clothing to stop that annoyance! YEP, give me good old northern Ontario any day :)

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Seven was bitten by a snake several years ago. I was home and she and Kate (4 yo at the time) were out romping in the garden. When they came up to the house, Seven was hanging her head and whining. I couldn't see anything wrong, brought her in. Checked her a few minutes later and she had a big swelling on her muzzle, like a tennis ball. At first I thought wasp or scorpion and called the vet. They said bring her in and let's make sure it's not a snake bite. While standing in the waiting room telling the vet what happened, Seven started trembling and drooling. The vet moved darn quick at that point! We nearly lost her and she is now the $6 Million Dollar Dog. Thank god it was Friday and I was home, or I would have certainly come home to a dead dog. Don't know what kind of snake it was, but we have lots of copperheads and cottonmouths. Never seen a rattlesnake, but they are around. Anyway, since then I've gotten them the rattlesnake "vaccine". It's supposed to work to slow the response to the poison somehow and apparently works on other types of venom as well--buys you time to get to the vet.

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Now I know why I love living where I do...I'll put up with the cold winters because I don't have to worry about poisonous anything! Of course, blackflies and mosquitos are annoying..but I can wear clothing to stop that annoyance! YEP, give me good old northern Ontario any day :)

 

 

Someday we'll become snowbirds (if the governor doesn't raid the pension I've been paying into for 21 years :angry:). Duluth in the summer and Tucson in the winter.

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First aid for Australian snakebite (to the limbs) is pressure bandaging and immobilisation. In theory, it buys you enough time to get yourself (or your dog) to hospital or vet. As I understand it, pressure bandaging for rattlesnake bite has not been recommended, because of the fear of local tissue damage; bites from many Australian snakes are rapidly lethal but cause very little local tissue damage. However, some recent experimental studies suggest benefits from pressure bandaging for rattlesnake envenomation. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19888893

 

My emphasis added.

 

Before you attempt any first aid for snake bite, please be sure you know what kind of snakes you're dealing with. The emergency treatment for different venom varies- wether it causes local or systemic damage most rapidly. Tourniquets in and of themselves can do a good deal of damage if applied incorrectly.

 

From an EMT, who just took an environmental emergencies class with a section on snakebites.

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I miss dry.....

 

-----------------------

 

My old Pop used to eat the rattlesnakes.

 

They would come up on our porch to get cool.

 

he found it convenient.

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I quite agree, Northfield Nick... I do think it is important to follow local medical/veterinary advice - which is usually based on the best current evidence! Or perhaps a local herpetologist could advise.

 

Just to clarify... Pressure bandaging is very different from using a tourniquet. A tourniquet is intended to interrupt blood flow, but pressure bandaging is intended to impede lymphatic circulation. I'm no expert on how to do it, but I've been told that it should be applied with as much pressure as if you were bandaging a sprain - but down and then up the entire limb.

 

With regards to our Australian nasty critters. On the plus side, we don't have any large land predators - no bears, cougars etc. On the minus side, the creatures I fear more than snakes (at least for my dogs) are paralysis ticks, which can kill dogs quite quickly, if undetected. They're easy to miss, too - a colleague's dog died this summer, after the vet had removed one tick, shaved the dog, and still missed a second tick.

 

Kerry

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I miss warm. Especially since it ought to be on it's way to getting there by now and it still feels like February.

Then come to AZ -- today they are forecasting a record high (99F/36C). SoCal would be be an alternative; yesterday Blythe (just barely over the border from AZ) had 100F, a new record.

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loads of absolutely beautiful desert that, for some strange reason, sees very few hikers.
What, you guys don't go to Camelback everyday with the 100's of other people inches from each other enjoying nature????? ;) I'm not going to lie, we do go to South Mountain often. It amazes me that with all those people there DH and I are able to go off on some trails less traveled and sometimes barely see people. I miss the big all day hikes we did when we were in Colorado. We've done one or two out here since we have moved here, but definitely not enough. The best picnics you'll ever have in your life are the ones that take hours on foot to get there. Who says dogs are the only creatures who need to walk around with their family unit?

 

I agree with John, when it won't get below 100 at night is when I am not too fond of the weather. :lol: Otherwise I love it. I actually go sit outside when it is 110 +. It feels so good! Then again I also have a severely under functioning thyroid and am almost always cold. My insides finally get warm in the summer!

 

We have only come across a rattlesnake once thus far. DH and I were hiking when we first moved here in 2007. We sat down to get a bite to eat when we heard the rattling. I'm not proud to admit that I was actually up and moving before I could get the word snake out of my mouth. :lol: DH and Ceana were quickly behind me.

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What, you guys don't go to Camelback everyday with the 100's of other people inches from each other enjoying nature????? ;) I'm not going to lie, we do go to South Mountain often. It amazes me that with all those people there DH and I are able to go off on some trails less traveled and sometimes barely see people. I miss the big all day hikes we did when we were in Colorado. We've done one or two out here since we have moved here, but definitely not enough. The best picnics you'll ever have in your life are the ones that take hours on foot to get there. Who says dogs are the only creatures who need to walk around with their family unit?

 

I agree with John, when it won't get below 100 at night is when I am not too fond of the weather. :lol: Otherwise I love it. I actually go sit outside when it is 110 +. It feels so good! Then again I also have a severely under functioning thyroid and am almost always cold. My insides finally get warm in the summer!

 

We have only come across a rattlesnake once thus far. DH and I were hiking when we first moved here in 2007. We sat down to get a bite to eat when we heard the rattling. I'm not proud to admit that I was actually up and moving before I could get the word snake out of my mouth. :lol: DH and Ceana were quickly behind me.

Okay, I have to ask as I still can't figure it out. Does DH stand for Darling Husband or---mmmm--something else?

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What, you guys don't go to Camelback everyday with the 100's of other people inches from each other enjoying nature????? ;) I'm not going to lie, we do go to South Mountain often. It amazes me that with all those people there DH and I are able to go off on some trails less traveled and sometimes barely see people. I miss the big all day hikes we did when we were in Colorado. We've done one or two out here since we have moved here, but definitely not enough. The best picnics you'll ever have in your life are the ones that take hours on foot to get there. Who says dogs are the only creatures who need to walk around with their family unit?

 

I agree with John, when it won't get below 100 at night is when I am not too fond of the weather. :lol: Otherwise I love it. I actually go sit outside when it is 110 +. It feels so good! Then again I also have a severely under functioning thyroid and am almost always cold. My insides finally get warm in the summer!

 

We have only come across a rattlesnake once thus far. DH and I were hiking when we first moved here in 2007. We sat down to get a bite to eat when we heard the rattling. I'm not proud to admit that I was actually up and moving before I could get the word snake out of my mouth. :lol: DH and Ceana were quickly behind me.

 

Carrie,

Do you ever hike from the east end of South Mountain near the Marcos DiNiza monument? If you hang a left at the wash at the end of the road you can head up a wash that is beautiful and quiet. It goes all the way to "Fat Man's Pass". It was always deserted when we went.

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Does DH stand for Darling Husband or---mmmm--something else?
I was always under the the impression it stood for dear husband, it might be darling. I have no idea. :)

 

Do you ever hike from the east end of South Mountain near the Marcos DiNiza monument?]
We haven't done that yet but we will now. We usually start off by the golf course and wander our way back for a few hours.
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