Common European vipers about to wake from hibernation

viper bitesViper bites.Photo: Terje Pedersen / NTB scanpix

With spring in the air, vipers have begun to wake up from winter hibernation. Both dog owners and others should be on extra guard.

As the weather gets warmer, several places in southern Norway have already observed the snake wrote Tryg Forsikring in a press release.The company encouraged people (and people with dogs) to be extra on guard.

“It is important to look carefully before you sit down where the sun is warming the ground. Vipers (Hoggorm) are as fond of sun and warmth as you are, and in the mountains you can see them. If you are out walking the dog, you should definitely look extra carefully at this time of year’’ said Tryg chief, Espen Opedal.


For man’s best friend, a meeting with a viper can, at worst, be fatal, said veterinarian, Tor Kvine at AniCura Animal Hospital in Bergen.

‘’It is very variable how sick the dogs get. We lost two dogs two years ago, despite intensive treatment and antidotes. In any case, snake bites should be regarded as an acute case that requires veterinary treatment as quickly as possible’’ said Kvinge. He said there are some symptoms dog owners can look for.

‘’A clear sign may be that your dog is crying out in the woods. A snake bite can appear in the skin as two small holes or dots next to each other.A powerful and often blood-red swelling occurs around the bite that can spread” Kvinge explained.

Don’t suck

If the accident happens, it is advisable to keep the dog at rest to limit the spread of the poison.

‘’The bite should not be sucked on or cooled down, and one should not attempt to stop the blood circulation from the bite site’’ said the veterinarian.

© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today