May 21st & 22nd, 2016
Bearpoint Kennel and Black Forest Kennel
Hosted by Dale and Brenda Merritt Larkspur, Colorado
You are wondering what exactly a Snake Avoidance Clinic is and what is going to happen to my dog…. Professional dog and snake handler Julian Weslow from Trinity, Texas, who has ‘desnaked’ over 5000 dogs in the past 20 years, will conduct the clinic, sponsored by the Bearpoint Kennel.
We use live Diamondback Rattlesnakes. With the possibility of accidental striking of dogs, the snakes have been surgically ‘defanged’ to prevent extraction of venom. Since rattlers have the capabilities of rotating fangs very quickly after accidents to their fangs, Julian uses a clipping method to keep the old fang partially in place. Due to that, there is still a possibility that a dog could get pricked where that portion of the fang is and draw blood. The possibility of venom extracting from that portion of the fang is very low. Julian has had hundreds of dogs struck during the ‘desnaking’ process, with never a reported accidental venom extraction. While no venom has yet to have been extracted, Julian knows that every year dog owners are concerned should their dog be struck; this explanation will advise you of that possibility.
The clinic uses electronic stimulation dog collars for the negative response in teaching the dog that the discomfort comes from the snake. The electronic collar has been proven as a very safe method of training.
There will be 2 rattlesnakes on the course. The first snake has had its rattles taped to simulate a dormant snake or a Cottonmouth. The dog is brought in the vicinity of the snake using long check cords. The best response is to get the dog to use its natural senses and SMELL THE SNAKE…..& SEE THE SNAKE! When the handler of the collar sees that this has occurred, then a negative response will be given from the e-collar. Some dogs will need to see it again, but most will learn quickly that any curiosity will result in a negative response.
The second snake will usually be a very aggressive rattlesnake, complete with the buzzing of rattles. Again the plan is to have the dog use it’s natural senses and HEAR THE SNAKE……SEE THE SNAKE…..& SMELL THE SNAKE. If the dog responds by leaving the vicinity, no negative response will be given, but if the dog is still curious, he will receive a negative e-collar response.
The last loyal check is to have the owner call the dog to him while the rattlesnake is between the dog and the owner. A wide berth around the snake is the final lesson that the dog knows WHERE THE SNAKE IS…..WHAT THE SNAKE SOUNDS LIKE………& WHAT THE SNAKE SMELLS LIKE. This method of training is not going to help the dog that does not smell, see or hear the snake. We have heard many success stories from owners of seminar dogs that got the chance to SMELL, SEE or HEAR it…………Give your dog a chance…….. “DESNAKE”!!!