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Snake Dogs- Best Breeds of Dogs That Kill Snakes

Updated on February 04, 2016
Randy Godwin profile image

Randy has been the proud owner of a Jack Russel for over 15 years. These wonderful dogs make excellent pets and protectors of one's home.

Jack Russell Terriers Make Good Snake Dogs

Ally, the fearless rattlesnake killer.
Ally, the fearless rattlesnake killer. | Source

Dogs vs Snakes

The buzz of a rattlesnake’s rattles is not hard to mistake. Anyone who has ever encountered this dangerous reptile never forgets the sound. It is a warning to all species to stay away, but it doesn’t always work. Ally, the little Jack Russell terrier, had found a huge canebrake rattlesnake by the swimming pool..

Her bark, different when a rattler is encountered, alerted me to her discovery. She circled the snake until it had to adjust its body to face the dog. Finally Ally saw her opening, darted in and grabbed the snake, and immediately began shaking it violently before throwing it to the ground. She did this until the big rattler was finished. She looked at me as if to say, "How dare that snake move into my territory". Indeed!


Catching a Canebrake Rattler

Dogs and Their Instincts

Ally has learned how to safely dispatch these creatures without getting bitten so far. She seems to know the difference between rattlers and other harmless snakes as evidenced by her bark. She seems to hate these invasive timber rattlers, by mere instinct.

The number she has killed is unknown as she freely roams hundreds of acres of woodland harboring many of these creatures. Ally is a snake dog, Besides being a valuable and much loved member of our family. We worry about her safety, but she has a mind of her own when it comes to her inborn instinct to kill snakes.

Canebrake rattler

Danger underfoot
Danger underfoot | Source
Source

What Makes A good Snake Dog

There is no breed of dog called a “snake dog” of course, but there are breeds better at this ancient ritual than others. Almost all dog breeds have individual members which are good at killing snakes. 

But being able to kill a venomous snake without being struck is the difference in being a successful snake dog, and one which may or may not make it to the vet. In some sections of the country this is not important because of the scarcity of dangerous snakes, but this is not the case in southern Georgia and northern Florida.

The countryside consists of woodland and agricultural crops which mice and other small animals feed upon giving snakes a virtual smorgasbord of food nearby. Farmers, migrant workers, construction crews, and of course, homeowners encounter rattlesnakes on a regular basis.

While many of these snakes are not dangerous and help keep the rodent population in check, there are also several species of rattlesnakes to contend with. They will be found in any open accessible area in which a possibility of food exists. Lawns, gardens, flower beds, and even inside buildings.

This is one reason for having a dog on your premises. Of course there are dogs who won’t give a snakes a second look, if they see them at all. There are some dogs which may try to kill a snake but are not fast enough to avoid being struck by the lightening fast rattler. Other dogs may attempt to play with the snake not knowing of the danger involved.

Speed and Quickness Essential

A dog’s technique for killing snakes seems to be hereditary. The instinct to violently shake a snake repeatedly disrupts the nervous system of the snake by injuring the delicate spine running the length of the snake. This prevents the snake from striking in the direction of the dog. The danger to the dog comes while trying to seize the snake. A good snake dog will wait for the right opportunity before attempting to kill the snake.

Jack Russell terriers are very good as snake killers. Their speed and intelligence allows them to avoid getting bitten until a chance to grab the snake presents itself. But even these dogs get bitten occasionally. Fortunately, there are vaccines available for dogs that live in rattlesnake infested areas. Although this vaccine was developed for the western diamondback rattlesnake, this vaccine may help if your dog is bitten by other rattlesnake species. Not enough is known about this vaccine yet to tell how effective it is in preventing death or serious injury to dogs.

How does one find a “snake dog”? This has to be by word of mouth in most cases. In most rural areas a good snake killing dog is well known to the locals. Obtaining a puppy from known snake killing parents is the best way to assure the dog can dispatch a snake. Even then some will not be good at this task. It’s hard to teach instinct and caution to a dog if they are the impetuous type. This is another reason to obtain the vaccine for your dog. Some dogs develop an immunity to rattlesnake bite by getting struck several times and surviving the resulting injury. Some never have a second chance.

Most people do not have to worry about having venomous snakes invade their property so no dogs are needed to protect their children while at play. But this is a country of different landscapes and terrain in which many choose to live. Having a dog to guard against possible injury or death to your family may make a huge difference in the amount of safety you experience in your area.

One of Ally's Victims

Ready to strike.
Ready to strike. | Source

Beware!

Alerted!
Alerted! | Source
Defense!
Defense! | Source
Ready to strike!
Ready to strike! | Source

Typical Rattlesnake Behavior When Cornered.

As you can see from the photos on the right, a rattler will normally try to simply escape from the threat without being aggressive at all. But when it decides there is no other choice but to defend itself, it will quickly coil up in preparation for a fight.

While in the coiled stage it can quickly guard in any direction by easily swiveling its body. The canebrake in these photos can move easier in a counter-clockwise direct because it is coiled in this manner.

A smart--or very instinctive--dog will take advantage of this fact and circle in a clockwise manner for the eventual attack after making the snake commit itself to it's easiest direction of movement. However, the snake may coil in either direction, depending on its preference at the time of attack.

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    • profile image

      Paul 7 years ago

      You want a dog to kill native wildlife? A bit irresponsible, considering all venomous snakes simply want to be left alone, and an aggressive dog makes matters worse by aggrivating and attacking them.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 7 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Hello Paul, I guess it depends on what "native wildlife" means to you. The canebrake rattler is a recent invader in my area. It used to be rare to even find one except in the deep swamp. The diamondback rattlesnake was predominant until the boll weevil eradication program destroyed many of the gopher tortoises, which dug burrows the rattlers used to survive the winter.

      Since then the canebrake has infested the area and can be found all around our property. If you step on one of these snakes they do not care if you mean them harm or not, they will strike you. Maybe it will be a dry bite, maybe not. The baby snakes can hide in small places, and they are much more dangerous than the big ones because they will give you the whole dose of venom. If you want, you can come save all of them and take them back with you.

      Thanks

      Randy Godwin

    • Michael Shane profile image

      Michael Shane 7 years ago from Gadsden, Alabama

      Very nice & important topic! I have a Jack Russell too! She is my pride & joy! The perfect dog! Looks like you got agood one too!

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 7 years ago from Southern Georgia

      I know what you mean, Michael! My Ally is the smartest animal I've ever encountered. I could never imagine a better dog than her! Thanks for the comments and congrats on your great dog!

    • profile image

      ralwus 6 years ago

      Easy thing to say 'You want a dog to kill native wildlife? . . . [...] and attacking them.' when you don't have them in your yard or garden or home. I can see that terrier as a great snake killer. Ours on the farm was a Scottish Terrier. We had Timber Rattlers, but he hated all snakes. Great hub Randy.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 6 years ago from Southern Georgia

      These folks simply don't understand, Charlie! I don't get angry though, I get this response often when I write about the recent infestation of canebrake rattlers we are experiencing here.

      Terriers seem to harbor a grudge against snakes more than some other canine species, but this is just my experience. Good of you to stop by Charlie. Thanks again, my friend!

    • profile image

      TONI SMITH 6 years ago

      There are several rat terrier breeders around us, are they good snake dogs? I have 5 children one of whom was bit by a copperhead, it was horrible!! I love nature and wildlife too, but venomous snakes are too risky to go unnoticed.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 6 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Hello Toni! Like all breeds of dogs, there are differences from litter to litter. One dog from the litter may be good at killing snakes while its sibling may not.

      But rat terriers are very smart so you may get lucky with one. You never know! My Ally is a special dog and I never expect to get another as good as she is.

      Thanks for commenting and reading!

      Randy :)

    • profile image

      Regis 6 years ago

      I'm not so sure I agree with your disbelief that a man named Jesus did not exist.

      However, I have enjoyed this article of yours. My very best friend was a shaggy injured "Benji-like" dog I picked up along a very busy highway.

      She was walking toward incoming traffic against the concrete median barrier only inches away from the tandem wheels of big rigs that sped by.

      She had enough sense to stay close to the barrier until she could cross and lay down in a small grassy area.

      I pulled off at the first chance, reversed, drove partway up an exit ramp and picked her up.

      She was about 10 at the time according to the vet. Her eyesight was poor and she was loosing her hearing. Yet, in spite of these problems, she followed behind me like a duck follows its mother for the next 8 years.

      She was, indeed, the best friend I've ever had. I will never forget her. If there's an afterlife, I hope she's there.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 6 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Not so much disbelief as lack of any solid evidence, Regis!

      But we can agree to disagree on this subject and that's okay! I'm glad you found a friend in your little dog! My Ally is most precious to me and I appreciate her loyalty and friendship. Thanks for reading and for the great comments about your furry friend.

    • mquee profile image

      mquee 6 years ago from Columbia, SC

      Now this is a unique and entertaining hub. I would hate for my dog to confront a snake, not knowing how she would fare. As you said, not every dog is suited for this type of confrontation. It is something I have never given much thought to, but you have made a very interesting and informative hub of this topic. Thanks for sharing.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 6 years ago from Southern Georgia

      I don't recommend letting a "city" dog come in contact with one of these fast creatures, mquee! But out here in the country they either learn fast or aren't around very long! Some dogs have been bitten so many times they develop an immunity to the rattlesnake's venom! Others, not so lucky! Thanks for visiting my hub!

    • Christopher Price profile image

      Christopher Price 6 years ago from Vermont, USA

      Your writing skills elevate this informational Hub to fine literature. Write Write Write!

      We have 4 dogs, the closest in size and hunting instinct to a Jack Russell is Foxxy, our Shiba Inu. Luckily, though we live on the perimeter of one of the few remaining rattle snake refuges in the state, we have few incidents of snake/human interaction.

      I like snakes, but I treasure my family. If I lived where you do, I'd never be without an "Ally".

      CP

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 6 years ago from Southern Georgia

      I really appreciate the compliment, Christopher! And the comments concerning your area and your dogs. My ally is very special to me, a one of a kind dog! She still loves to ramble over the farm and dispatch rattlers when she finds them.

      Thanks for dropping by!

      Randy

    • profile image

      Noel 6 years ago

      we have a chiwawa and she has found snakes for us when she starts to bark we know that there is one she is after we live upon a mountain and we are having a major problem with snakes is there anyway you can give me information on getting a terrior we also have a bull mastiff but he just lays around while our chiwawa goes on her hunt. Please help! I would love to purchase either more chiwawas or a terrior

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 6 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Hello Noel,

      Terriers are known as good snake dogs because the name "terrier" comes from the word Terra, meaning earth. Terriers keep their noses to the ground and this is why they are good at finding snakes and other creatures a different breed of dog may not notice at all.

      I'm sure will have no problem finding any type of dog you want simply by checking out the local newspaper, or better yet, check the local animal shelters. There are often great dogs to be found there and you will be doing the shelter, the dog, and yourself an enormous favor.

      Good luck finding a good snake dog, I think you will!

      Thanks for reading and commenting!

      Randy

    • profile image

      Paul 5 years ago

      Hi, I live in an area known as the Riverland in South Australia, it is a beautiful area with the Murray River flowing through it and is home to some of the worlds deadliest snakes. We have a West Highland Terrier ...Sophie. Yesterday she killed a Brown snake, the 6th in her life that we know of . The largest being 5' 8". She will bark at them and at the right time spring through the air as fast as lightening biting them anywhere between 6" to 12"" behind the head. One bite is enough . We call her 'Snake Dog Sophie' and hope that her luck continues

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 5 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Hello Paul and congratulations on having a good snake dog. Ally, my female Jack Russel terrier, prefers to shake the snakes vigorously which damages the creatures delicate spine and renders them unable to strike accurately.

      I've heard about the very deadly snakes in your country, so it makes sense to have a good snake dog around to keep them from approaching your home or grounds.

      Thanks for relating your experiences with your wonderful dog "Sophie" and give her a pat on the head for me!

      Randy

    • profile image

      sally 5 years ago

      Just came home and found a King Snake in my kitchen. We live on acreage. Do NOT like snakes in the house. HELP!! Dogs didn't pay any attention. Best dog? Jack Russell?

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 5 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Please don't harm the King Snake, Sally! They eat venomous snakes and do a great job keeping their numbers down. Many Jack's are good snake dogs, but this depends on the particular Jack, like in other breeds.

      Thanks for your time and question!

      Randy

    • Alastar Packer profile image

      Alastar Packer 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Bravo on asking Sally not to harm the Kings Randy, they do eat the vipers and mice are fantastic snakes and sadly getting rare, at least in the Carolinas.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 5 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Sorry to hear the snakes are getting rare in your area, Alastar! I am lucky to live in the country and get to observe so many species of wildlife that I forget sometimes that not everyone has the same opportunity to appreciate our wonderful American fauna.

      We still have a good population of Kings here but some species of snakes, such as the Coach whip and Indigo, have become rather rare. But I have faith they will recover if enough people take notice.

      Thanks for the comment and for your interest in our country's wildlife.

      Randy

    • tlpoague profile image

      Tammy 5 years ago from USA

      Wow, now that I am done with the cold chills running down my back from looking at your pictures, I can say thanks for this information. I live in rattlesnake country and can't stand the sight or thought of them nearby. I have a La-Chon that goes out of her way to advoid them, or any kind of snake for that matter. I am not sure if she would kill one or not. I have noticed that the bull snakes around here will kill the rattlesnakes. Of course, I don't stick around long enough to figure out the difference between the two when confronted by one.

      Thanks again for sharing this useful information. Awesome hub!

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 5 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Either a dog will attempt to kill snakes or simply avoid them. It all depends on the particular personality of the dog. My avatar is a King Snake which hunts down and kills other snakes, especially rattlesnakes!

      Thanks tlpoague for stopping by and for the comments!

      Randy

    • profile image

      D.T. 5 years ago

      12 days ago my snake killer named Stuart was fighting a corn snake in my back yard. How the snake got in with my 3 layed fence I will never know. Stuart won the fight. Somehow while taking care of business he hurt his back. He has FCE...a blood clot on his spine. Vet bills reached $2000 and he is still paralzed in his left back leg. Watch your dogs even the snake killers.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 5 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Sorry to hear about your dog, D.T.! But it surely wasn't the snake causing the blood clot, though! Yes, it does pay to watch your dog carefully. I wish you luck with your pet and thanks for stopping by.

      Randy Godwin

    • profile image

      D.T. 5 years ago

      Thank You. Friend. If you have any advice on keeping snakes away...I would love to hear it. Like I said I have a 3 layered fence. I am so Phobic and have actually been treated for my fear. Didn't work. I do feel badly when one bites the dust. I am in S.C.. Copperhead country. Please, I need advice.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 5 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Hello again D.T.! I've added some snake repellents and a trap to my article as I've gotten several requests for info about keeping snakes off one's property.

      I hope these products will set your mind at ease and they do not harm the snakes.

      Thanks for your input and questions.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Rozanna 5 years ago

      That little terrier is a brave one to kill a snake!

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 5 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Indeed she is, Rozanna! She's a wonderful little creature and it's true about them being "man's best friend."

      Thanks for dropping in!

      Randy Godwin

    • profile image

      Becki 5 years ago

      My kids have been begging for a dog since we moved to Georgia, and my fear of venomous snakes down here may be the thing that gets them one. If we can get a terrier that's as smart and devoted as Ally, we'll be very lucky indeed.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 5 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Thanks for stopping by, Becki! Sorry i took so long to respond but i just returned from a much needed vacation. Ally needed one too! LOL!

      Good luck on finding a good dog and I do hope it will be as good as Ally is.

      Thanks again,

      Randy Godwin

    • Brett.Tesol profile image

      Brett Caulton 5 years ago from Thailand

      Great hub and a cool little dog.

      My crazy Labrador alerted me to a snake in the garden, but I was more worried that the snake would get the dog (she's a quick dog, but a bit daft), so took care of it myself ... priorities eh! lol Maybe she needs a terrier friend to protect her ... as I really don't like the speed of snakes!! Mind you, the pythons in the area may be hard even for a terrier.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 5 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Thanks Brett! Yep, a python might prove a bit troublesome, even for Ally! LOL! But seriously, pythons are said to be moving up from Florida where thy were released or escaped as pets.

      Gotta get a bigger dog! Thanks for the comments and your time.

      Randy

    • Wesman Todd Shaw profile image

      Wesman Todd Shaw 5 years ago from Kaufman, Texas

      OUTSTANDING hub, Sir! WHEW - so proud for you to have them rattlers and . . . well, me to not have ever seen one in the wild ~crosses fingers~

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 5 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Much appreciated Wesman! Many folks feel the same way as you about snakes. I feel that way about cities! LOL!

      Randy

    • profile image

      Larry 5 years ago

      We live in the woods in Arkansas and kill 2-3 copperheads every summer. I'm talking about around our house, we don't go looking for them! I've read that copperheads are scared of humans and try to avoid them. From my experience, that is so wrong. They'll come in your house and live with you if you let them. lol In fact my wife got bit by one, trying to get in our front door. The snake came on it. One came in my big shop door while there was very loud noises and commotion going on just 5-10 feet away. I have finally had enough of them, and am now looking for a Jack Russell Terrier. Thank you so much for your info. It will help me make a wiser choice. But I have to admit, I think they're adorable dogs and more than anything, I'm looking forward to a good and caring relationship with one of the little guys, for our whole family!

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 5 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Thanks for your input on copperheads, Larry. I haven't seen one of these snakes around here in many years, but I know some areas have plenty of them.

      If you get a good Jack Russell-be sure and check out the parents of the dog first to make sure they aren't too hyper active-you will find them to be very lovable, intelligent, and courageous members of the family.

      My Ally is famous around here for being all of the above and then some. Good luck finding your own "Ally" and thanks for your time and comments.

      Randy Godwin

    • profile image

      Katie 5 years ago

      Hi there :) Found this page after googling ''Dogs that kill snakes'' We live in Central Queensland, Australia, and my son discovered a juvenile Eastern Brown snake IN HIS BEDROOM today!! Scared the you know what out of the poor kid, now considering getting a Jack Russell :) Thanks for the info!

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 5 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Hi Katie, sounds as if you do indeed need a good snake dog to keep guard on your home. Not only will a good Jack keep the snakes out, but will become a beloved member of your family.

      Thanks for reading and for your interesting snake experience.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Dawney 5 years ago

      I am from Delaware buying a home in South Caroline with the hopes of moving there. I am scared to death of snakes and wants to do some gardening, my husband does not care too much for dogs but I will definitely be getting one of those Russells when we move as my gardening and outdoor partner. Thanks for the information you offered.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 5 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Thanks for reading my article and commenting, Dawney! Good luck on finding a good snake dog too. I think you will happy with a Jack Russell. They are very intelligent and loving animals which usually become members of the family, as well as, good protection against snakes.

      Randy

    • profile image

      Sanchot 5 years ago

      I live in the city, but yesterday I took my 3 dogs (a shepherd mix, a min-pin, and a pit bull) on a hike in the nearby hills. People do it all the time, and all that I spoke with said they never encountered rattlesnake. Well, WE did, a large one, and my pit bull immediately ran to it and would not leave it alone. I thought for sure he would be bitten. I herded the other dogs back down the trail, expecting a bitten pit bull to eventually followl - to my surprise, the pit bull came running back down within a couple of minutes, all excited and energized, and he had NOT been bitten! I was flalbbergasted. I did not know a dog could get that close to a snake and not get bit.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 5 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Most dogs instinctively know how to avoid getting snake bit, Sanchot, but still you are lucky your pit bull didn't get struck since he was not used to snakes. The bigger the dog the more likely he will get bit in most cases.

      Thanks for relating your experience and for stopping by!

      Randy SSSSS

    • moonlake profile image

      moonlake 5 years ago from America

      My Mom and Dad lived in Arkansas and Texas and had problems with snakes in their yard. No one wants to kill a snake but you don't want them to kill you or your kids.

      They had two dogs at different times one a terrier of some kind and the other a white poodle they were the best snake dogs. They would jump on those snakes like Rikki Tikki Tavi the mongoose and kill them. Never once were they bitten.

      I have ran into a rattler and never want to do that again.

      By the way I agree with you on the "Elite" it just sounds like their so superior to other hubbers.

      "SHARE"

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 5 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Well, I've just been banned for 4 weeks, apparently because of my stand on the "Elite" controversy, so I won't be posting on that thread for awhile. LOL!

      Thanks so much for your input on this hub as many don't see venomous snakes as the real danger they are. In some parts of the country having a good snake dog is the norm, especially in areas where rattlesnakes have become overpopulated.

      Thanks again for your time and experiences!

      Randy SSSSS

    • profile image

      ashlee 5 years ago

      ally is a brave dog we have a black lab , a doberman, and a husky. they all teamed up on a rattlesnake!

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 5 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Hi Ashlee! Yep, teamwork is always better for snake-killin' dogs! LOL! Ally is indeed TOO brave sometimes, and she is getting a bit of age on her now, so I worry about her these days, especially now that the snakes are crawlin'!

      Thanks for stopping in and for reading, as well as for the input about your dogs!

      Randy SSSSS

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      jackie 4 years ago

      what does a dog look like when he has a snake in its mouth please post a picture i really want to see it since i dont have a dog but i want one

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 4 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Hi Jackie! I'm sorry, I don't have a pic of Ally with a snake in her mouth. She usually darts in ans grabs the snake before shaking it vigorously and throwing it down hard. This rapid shaking usually breaks the snake's spine and renders it unable to strike.

      She never simply picks up the snake and holds it in her mouth. You might check Youtube, though!

      Thanks for stopping by and for your comments!

      Randy SSSSS

    • profile image

      Bob 4 years ago

      Randy, Great hub and good information. We have copperheads,cottonmouths,and coral snakes.They have all come into our yard, we have an open field behind us. Our dog is a Lab/Catahoula mix and she goes after them like I can not believe. She is one year old and has been bitten by a Copperhead, and two nights ago she went after a Cottonmouth and also go bit, but she would not stop. Even after I killed the snake she wanted to get it and to watch her shake the snake is amazing. I wonder if this is a protective thing as my wife was on the back patio and her and the dog are very close. I appreciate all wild life, but poisonous snakes in my back yard will be disposed of.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 4 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Yes, it merely instinct for some dogs to know how to kill snakes effectively, Bob! This instinct is especially shown when a dog's family appears to be threatened by such creatures. My Ally gets riled up if she finds a venemous snake in her territory. And it is her territory, after all.

      I don't bother snakes in the woods, but when children or pets are concerned, I have no compunctions about eliminating them. Idf they were endangered it would be different story, of course.

      Thanks for stopping by and for relating how your dog reacts to venomous snakes.

      Randy SSSSS

    • profile image

      reggie 4 years ago

      the australian terrier is known to be the best snake killer there built low to the grown and have thick hair over there chest to help protect them from from a quick strait attack my.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 4 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Terriers of many types are normally good snake dogs, Reggie! My Jack Russell has thick hair but some of the rattlers here have very long fangs. She's also a short-legged dog too, so I understand why the Australian terrier is such a good snake dog.

      Thanks for your time and comments!

      SSSSS

    • profile image

      Keithman 4 years ago

      Hey Randy I just wanted to say pit bulls make for very good snake dogs too,I was walking my dog (Max) today when I walked right on top of a copperhead, Max got tied up I dropped the leash six inches from the snake and he rent it in half using the same technique as your dog so if anyone is interested pit bulls are great too.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
      Author

      Randy Godwin 4 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Thanks for the info about pit bulls being good snake dogs, Keithman. I know pits have a bad rep in some cases, but I've discovered a dog is only as good as its master. Thanks for reading!

      Randy

    • profile image

      Joyce 4 years ago

      Hello Randy, The only place that I have seen real snakes is in a zoo. However I read about them a lot and some of the things that I have read is very disturbing. I would say that since you live in the vicinity where these dangerous reptiles have taken up residence, then you will have to do what you have to do to protect you and your family. It is easy for us who are not in the situation to condemn and make judgement about things that we have no experience of. So I say kill them.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 4 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Thanks for your comments and opinion on this controversial, subject, Joyce. Just a couple of days ago we came up on a neighbor watching a 5 foot diamondback rattler cross the dirt road adjacent to our farm. I've not seen a diamondback on our farm--hundreds of acres--in over 15 years.

      My friend and I tried to talk the neighbors out of killing the snake but they and their dogs walk in the area all of the time and were afraid one of them would get struck. I took some photos and video of the snake before they killed it. I never kill any snakes I find in the wild. We moved it around and kept it from leaving quite a bit before it ever sung its rattles or tried to strike.

      I did understand the fear of the neighbors and realize--where there's one diamondback there are others close by. But we have plenty of kingsnakes to keep most of them under control here too.

      SSSSS

    • SomewayOuttaHere profile image

      SomewayOuttaHere 4 years ago from TheGreatGigInTheSky

      kewl! Ally is not only a good lookin' dog...but she's smart and fast!

      Yeah Ally!....

      I still don't think i could handle snakes Randy....guess that's why Ally is on the job

      Raven's dad killed a cougar last year...he lost his eye as a result....i saw both of her parents...they are working dogs... they weren't into wanting a pat on the head...they had a job to do....Raven comes from a breed that guards/protects as well....i rescued her from a life of guarding the livestock on 400 acres....or maybe i didn't rescue her?....ha ha ha ...she'll have a good life and give back by guarding me...i hope! She does try to 'round me up' every morning as i head to the kitchen to put the coffee on! Her breed is Maremma..most times people don't have them as pets, but rather for guarding livestock....oh my...poor Raven!

      Ally is having a really good life...roaming free throughout your property!

      Darn, Ally, whydya! kill that beautiful, venomous snake that was slithering too close to the house!

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 4 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Sounds as if you do indeed have a good dog, Someway. And hopefully you'll become friends who watch each others backs also. Kinda like Ally and I always have when we are out in the woods. Dogs aren't only "man's" best friend, ya know.

      sssss

    • SomewayOuttaHere profile image

      SomewayOuttaHere 4 years ago from TheGreatGigInTheSky

      we're definitely buddies and i figure we'll become quite tight....she's always watching what i'm doing or where i am ....and vise versa...she loves my jeep i bought for her to ride in - 4 doors of course!!!! ha ha ha!....lots of room to stretch out in the back when we are out 4 x 4'ing looking for nature pics!....i haven't had a dog in years! and i am glad i found her...too bad she won't fit comfortably into a side car soon!........she hasn't seen me take off on my bike yet!!!!....soon she'll realize what that sound is all about!...i'm off topic now....sorry ....ha ha ha

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 4 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Ha! That would be great to ride her in a side car. Now that would make a good photo to post on the net. I'll be lookin' for it!

      sssss

    • LongTimeMother profile image

      LongTimeMother 4 years ago from Australia

      Oh, what a great hub! lol.

      My snake dogs are mini foxies. Similar to Jack Russells but short haired, so it is easier to check them for paralysis ticks.

      Somewhere I have videos and photos of my dogs (one or more at a time) killing big deadly snakes. I wouldn't put the video on youtube because I am embarrassed about the swearing, but if I come across a photo some time I'll email it for you to add to your hub. :)

      Voted up.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 4 years ago from Southern Georgia

      @LongTimeMother--I would still place the video on YouTube and take out the sound if you don't want the cursing in it. I think it would be helpful and I would sure link to it!

      Any photos would be great too! :)

    • LongTimeMother profile image

      LongTimeMother 4 years ago from Australia

      Okay, makes sense. I'll have to dig out the tapes because the camera I used at the time used mini dv tapes. Once harvest time is over here I'll have a chance to look through some boxes. :)

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 4 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Cool beans! Go for it!

    • Joe Ben Havoc profile image

      Joe Ben Havoc 3 years ago

      Our dog of 14 years was 'bitten' by a rattler, yesterday, in southern Colorado. He died from the bite.

      In fact, the rattler was already decapitated. The dog picked up the head in his mouth and bit it - apparently injecting himself with a lethal dose of venom to his mouth tissues. He lingered for about six hours.

      So, guys, don't apologize for killing those snakes! And, remember, a rattler is still lethal after he is dismembered.

      I will never regret killing another rattler.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 3 years ago from Southern Georgia

      So true about the rattler still being dangerous after its death, Joe. Many don't realize this fact.

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      Mystic Baby Jade 2 years ago

      I wanted to add a dog to this list. He's my little Snake Killing Machine. He has undoubtedly saved us humans & our other pets from many venomous snakes, here in our very wooded area of Mississippi.

      He's a Boston Terrier, with one normal eye and one "blue" eye. (I say blue in quotations because it's actually pigmentless)... Anyway, we call it his "magic eye" because he really seems to use it a lot when dealing with snakes. Our theory is that it helps him detect the slightest motion, because without pigment in the eye, light bounces around in the eye, so any slight movement would be noticed much quicker. He's only been bitten once, by a copperhead. His face swelled but he made it through & is still a Snake Killer. When his days are done, I plan to definitely have another terrier of some sort, as it is in their nature to go after unwanted pests. (He kills wild mice as well). We also have a rottweiler but because she's a big, slow mover, she works at causing confusion and stress to the snake, as Snake Killer does his job. They work very well as a team.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 2 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Thanks for your input about your dogs, Mystic Baby Jade. Terriers seem to be the choice of those who want an aggressive snake dog to protect their property and family. Great little dogs and loyal to boot. :)

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      Shurta 2 years ago

      Does the snake repellent really work and how does it work?

    • LongTimeMother profile image

      LongTimeMother 2 years ago from Australia

      Hi Randy. I never did get around to finding my old photos and videos but I managed recently to take some fresh photos of our dog battling a venomous snake. The dog won. :) I put the pics in a hub if you'd like to see them.

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 2 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Hey LTM! Happy New Year to you and your family. :) I'll check out your pics sometime today after the traditional meal at my Mom's house. Hope you are well. :)

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      Angie 2 years ago

      I am in Queensland, Australia. Bit broken hearted and have just lost my 2 Jack Russell's to a Mad Taipan snake this week. My dogs were a part of my family however they have done the job they were here for sadly. I am grateful for the time I had with them and more grateful they saved my children xxx

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 2 years ago from Southern Georgia

      So sorry to hear about your pets, Angie. Yes, it's sad but you do understand the importance of having such wonderful creatures to protect your children from harm and appreciate their sacrifices. Thanks for telling me about them. :)

      Randy

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      Bob J. 2 years ago

      friend of mine said because I have dogs loose and running the rattlesnake moves on ,true?, haven't seen any but one baby , he is down the road from me and catches diamond backs all the time, just wondering

    • Randy Godwin profile image
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      Randy Godwin 2 years ago from Southern Georgia

      It may be true in some cases Bob, but I've killed many snakes around homes that keep dogs. I think the food supply--mice and other small rodents--has more to do with the snake population more than anything.

      That's why chicken, hog, and cattle farms, as well as grain businesses, tend to have more snakes around the premises.

      Thanks for the comment, Bob. :)

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