Is Petting an Adder a Wise Choice?
An adder, also known as a European adder or common viper, is a venomous snake found throughout in Europe, parts of Asia, and northern Africa. Adder’s have a much milder venom compared to cobras and rattlesnakes, but still can be fatal to humans. Given the danger of this species, one may wonder if it is safe to pet an adder.
The Danger of Petting an Adder
Before considering to pet an adder, one must be aware of the dangers the animal poses to people. Although the venom of an adder is much less potent than other dangerous snakes, it is still venomous. An adder’s venom can disrupt blood coagulants and cause anemia, which can lead to weakness, confusion and fatigue if left untreated. In addition, adders are known to be highly irritable and will strike without warning, especially when feeling threatened.
The three main areas that most commonly cause problems when dealing with an adder are the head, body and tail. Adder’s are equipped with sharp teeth and a dangerous venom, both of which can cause serious damage to a person if they happen to walk or stand too close to the head. In addition, a bite from an adder’s tail can cause severe tissue necrosis and even partial paralysis.
Reasons to Not Pet an Adder
Given the danger an adder poses to humans, it is advised to never attempt to pet the creature. Even if the head, body and tail are not within reach, an adder will still pose a significant threat to humans if they happen to accidentally step on, or near, the creature. In addition, adder’s are much more likely to attack wherever their tail is, so petting an adder should be avoided at all costs.
Adder’s also have an unpredictable nature, which makes them very hard to get close to. The majority of adders will flee when humans are near, but there is always a chance that the creature will strike if it feels threatened. In addition, since adders are a nocturnal creature, they will usually be found in secluded, dark areas, meaning that it would be difficult to spot an adder and stay safe.
How to Prepare if You Decide to Pet an Adder
Although it is highly recommended to not pet an adder, some may choose to attempt it anyway. If one decides to do so, it is important to follow a few safety precautions to keep both humans and the snake safe.
The first step is to locate an adder in a safe, isolated area. It is best to do this during the day, when it is much easier to spot the snake. The safest way to pet an adder is to use a snake hook, which is a metal hook used by wildlife experts to handle wildlife safely. When petting an adder, it is important to stay at least two feet away from the animal in order to avoid any potential harm. It is also important to use gentle strokes and avoid over-petting an adder, as this can cause the creature to become agitated and strike.
Given the danger that
adders present to humans, it is highly recommended to not attempt to pet one of these creatures. Even if precautions are taken and all safety measures are in place, there is still a risk involved with petting an adder. Therefore, it is best to leave these creatures alone and appreciate them from a distance.
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