Injured Rat Snake

Injured rat snake.

I was out for a walk today and when I returned to within 1/2 mile of the house, I saw a rat snake curled up in the road. I went over to it to attempt to get it to leave the road surface so it wouldn’t get run over by a car. Once I got closer, I could see the snake was injured but still alive. Although I didn’t realize it was a rat snake at the time, I knew it was not venomous and picked it up. It had skin missing from two areas on its body and there was a wound on its head. The eyes did not look good, so I feared the end was near.

But, I wanted to try to save it anyway, so I carried it 1/2 mile back home with it’s head in one hand and the tail in the other. It lightly wrapped its tail around my hand, which made me realize it was still with us. The eyes looked near death so I thought it would perish before I got home, but it did not release its tail. That gave me hope.

When I got home, I rang the door bell since I had a snake in both hands. No answer but Dart went ballistic. I tried to open the door and it was locked. I went to the garage and it was open and I was able to open the door into the house with the snake in my hands. I found that Regis was in the shower. I entered the bathroom and told him to get it over with quick and come help.

We have little in the area of snake supplies, so we repurposed Dart’s fabric dog crate into a snake enclosure. We placed the snake inside with some water and left it alone while I emailed some snake experts to determine what to do. A couple hours later, the snake look much better and the eyes were glistening. I have hope this snake will pull through. Regis thinks it was the victim of a string trimmer.

I’m hoping my snake friends will get back to me, but in the meantime I researched and determined that I needed to provide it a place to hide, check, something to keep it warm, check, and food eventually. So, if this snake is still alive tomorrow, I’ll be looking for a dead mouse. Argh!

If any of my local friends are snake charmers, please let me know. I have never handled a snake before and don’t know how to take care of one. I don’t want to release the snake back into the wild until it recovers from its injuries. It’s a beautiful snake.

If I can get better pictures tomorrow without causing it more stress, I will post.

Injured rat snake.

2 Comments on “Injured Rat Snake

  1. That is one lucky snake to have encountered someone so kind and compassionate. I hope it recovers. I see so many of them intentionally run over on the road, and that’s very sad to see. One morning on my way to work, I encountered a rabbit that had been hit and left paralyzed in the middle of the road. It was trying desperately to move as cars passed it. The poor little thing was terrified. I pulled over, walked back, braved the traffic and put the bunny into a box that I always keep in my car. I took it to the emergency vet, who humanely euthanized it. I was so relieved that it didn’t die in pain and fear.


    • That was kind of you. I would have stopped also. The snake is very perky today and looking to escape its enclosure. Since it is feeling so well, we are going to let it go near where I found it and put some antibiotic on its wounds before we release it. It’s amazing what less than 24 hours of rest has done for this animal.


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