Source: BBC (Extract)
Posted: July 06, 2024

A mountain rescue team responded to assist the dog of one of its leaders after it was bitten by a snake during a walk. Elsa, a Cocker Spaniel, became ill after being nipped on the nose by an adder while accompanying owner Carol Hammond at Thruscross reservoir in Leeds on Friday.

Unable to get a phone signal to reach her husband Derek, who volunteers with the Upper Wharfedale Rescue Association (UWFRA), Mrs. Hammond dialed 999 for help. While Mr. Hammond was at his day job, it was his local rescue team that was dispatched to carry Elsa and transport her to the veterinarian.

Mr. Hammond, a dedicated mountain rescue volunteer for 22 years, recounted the incident: “Elsa spotted the snake on the path and being a typical spaniel, she must have been curious and approached it.”

“However, the snake didn’t take kindly to her curiosity.”

“Shortly after encountering the snake, Elsa began to feel unwell and required assistance. Unfortunately, my wife couldn’t carry her, and she couldn’t reach me due to poor phone signal. Her only option was to dial 999.”

“She knew there was a possibility that the police would involve the mountain rescue team.”

“When the team arrived, they all recognized each other, which was reassuring.”

Twelve-year-old Elsa was transported to Forest House vets in Knaresborough where she received antivenom treatment.

Mr. Hammond, residing in Staveley, mentioned they had walked around the reservoir numerous times without ever encountering a snake. “Even with my mountain rescue work, where we spend a lot of time in the hills, snake sightings are extremely rare.”

He added, “She was just very unlucky. Fortunately, she’s recovering well now.”