Snake Bite Home Cures

| Modified on May 01, 2020
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Natural First Aid for Snake Venom

Most North American snakes aren't poisonous, and the majority of snake bites that occur are non-venomous. Venomous North American snakes can be fairly easy to recognize: aside from the red-yellow-black coral snake, North American venomous snakes are pit-vipers and can be identified by their triangular head and depression (dent or pit) between the eye and nostril on either side of the head.

If bitten by a snake it is best to remain calm, remove any jewelry in case of swelling, keep the bite at or below your heart, cleanse the wound but do not flush it out with water (which will spread the venom faster), immobilize the affected area (arm or leg) to keep venom from spreading, and do not attempt to capture the snake that bit you, but remember its details. Seek immediate medical attention if the area swells, changes color, or is painful.

Home Remedies for Snake Bites

This page is for natural and home remedies for the treatment of snake bites. We are actively interested in acquiring folk treatments for snake bites, but currently our readers have suggested curry leaf and turmeric as therapeutic agents useful with bleeding and toxins. Know of a treatment for snake bites? Don't hesitate to share your story with us.


Curry Leaf

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Posted by T. Srikantharajah (London , UK) on 12/04/2007
5 out of 5 stars

Curry leaf (Murraya Koenigi Spreng) protects the liver and the liver cells and is even used as medicinal cure of certain liver diseases, the control of high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes and high cholesterol especially. It is an excellent culinary herb for fat reduction. Curry leaf not only makes a dish palatable but also adds flavour and nourishment too. Almost every part of the plant,its leaves, the root, bark, petals and fruits are all made use of either in cooking or medicinal purposes. Spicy curry leaves porridge is useful in the control of health problems. Even if stung by a snake, curry leaves porridge is commonly given to remove poison. It was considered a multi-purpose, all time herb.


Low Current DC Shock

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Posted by Tim Mitchell (Taree Nsw) on 11/22/2016
5 out of 5 stars

When in Tennessee our cat was bitten by a 3 foot copperhead snake and her eyelid turned inside out very quickly with the entire side of her head swelling up. I found her very quickly and wrapped her up in a towel (I worked at a vet clinic) and I gave her several pulses from a magneto based DC electroshock unit which we had on hand at the farm. We had used this unit with success for scorpion stings, bee stings and spider bites, and I gave her a good shock on either side of the swollen area. I have never seen a cat move so fast.... she wasn't about to let me give her another dose, so I took her to the farm area vet clinic and gave her some inject-able Sodium Ascorbate (buffered vitamin C) under the skin. The pain left, the swelling went down and within four hours she was looking normal and back outside catching mice. Our experience is that High Voltage (12KV) Low Current Pulsed DC electroshock is safe and has worked well for many things. The treatment is normally applied for about 6 doses as a one shock per dose treatment. If you are shocking yourself it is impossible to give yourself too much of a shock as your hand will jerk away with each dose. Avoid using high powered stun guns as they can cause a localised burn to the skin.

This method of treatment has been used extensively at the hospital Vozandes in Quito, Equador with resounding success for decades. It has been used by Dr Stan Abrams (published in JAMA) with great success on snake bite and spider bite. That is to name a few.

An Italian research team have proved the action of this treatment by showing that the proteins in the venom are broken apart and rendered permanently inactive by the action of the low current DC shock. This has been shown in vivo and in vitro tests. See "Inactivation of Crotalus atrox Venom Hemorrhagic Activity by Direct Current Exposure Using Hens' Egg Assay" and "Inactivation of Phospholipase A2 and Metalloproteinase from Crotalus atrox Venom by Direct Current".

There have been US based studies which have appeared to show this method ineffective, however these studies when read in fine detail and with knowledge of the process, are shown to have been conducted in an improper way which yielded misleading results for the researchers. The Italian studies have now shown what the several doctors which use this technique have claimed all along, it does work. If done correctly it is also safe, in other words, don't hold the shock source on for an extended period of time or do something stupid like hard wiring yourself to the very high powered ignition system of your car..... like one guy did.

This treatment method seems to work for both haemotoxic and neurotoxic snake venoms according to case studies. Most venoms contain very similar types of proteins and it is these proteins which the pulsed DC electric shock attacks, breaking a zinc ionic bond in the protein chain. As a result it has been shown to be effective against many types of bites and stings.

Replied by Tim Mitchell
(Taree Nsw)
11/26/2016

It is important to mention that originally when stun guns were used for this treatment, the voltage on them was quite low and relatively safe. Today most stun guns are in the millions of volts and should not be even considered for this use. No stun gun over 75'000 v should be used. Cattle prods are around the 8000v mark and are a much safer option, livestock electric fences are in the same range also. The spark lead off a mower, chainsaw or weed eater also produces an acceptable level of electricity with a low electrical current. Some individuals have used a TENS unit and claimed success as well as electrostim units.

The method used to apply the shock is best described as being given with a spark wire and a ground wire (or the metal chassis of the mower etc). The two contacts are placed across the bite site or inflamed area and the starter cord is pulled or voltage applied. The body will naturally pull away from the shock and this is considered one dose. Six to eight doses are usually required before the swelling ceases to progress and the pain eases. Shocks are usually administered in an X pattern across the bite site and then through the limb so maximum penetration is achieved. It is important to proceed to a hospital for monitoring as soon as possible after the shock has been administered, if you are able.

The method of monitoring at the Hospital Vozandes program in Quito Equador, was to shock as soon as possible, draw blood and watch for clotting (haemotoxic venom prevents blood clotting). If the blood didn't clot, further shocks were administered and more blood drawn. This was repeated until the blood clotted meaning that the venom in the blood stream had been fully deactivated.

This treatment method has been documented to work against haemotoxic snake venom, but also has worked against neurotoxic venom with success.

Replied by Kk
(Colorado)
09/09/2017

The electro shock gadget is definitely something useful on a backcountry excursion, when getting to a hospital is not an option. Do you have info on how to purchase or make one? Thanks.

Replied by Tim Mitchell
(Taree Nsw)
07/01/2018

Kk, If you think that antivenom is a silver bullet, please educate yourself. Treatment with Antivenom is massively expensive, often very damaging to the body and some people can have permanent damage to their bodies or come close to death... or worse. It is important to know the facts so you can make the best decision for you in an emergency.

There are several devices which are sold specifically for use with snake and spider bite. These are essentially low powered stun guns. Some people carry a TENS unit for the same purpose. Also one company in the US makes a painless device which people take into the wilds called the V-zap. If you want to locate sources of devices, I would suggest googling "first aid venom electric shock" and that should lead you to a list of devices and where they can be obtained from. I have tried several different ones myself with success, including the TENS unit for around 30 minutes on the continuous high setting and people I know have used them for snake bite and Brown Recluse bite with success.. I hope that helps.


Rattlesnake Bite Recovery Remedies

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Posted by Brad Christian (Cool, CA) on 07/11/2019
5 out of 5 stars

Rattlesnake Bite Recovery Remedies

I bought items for a KIT which was kept on my vineyard/ranch at the shop and the house for rattlesnake bite, after catching four in one month on the property. Neutralizing venom is easy, and I utilize a four stage counter attack below. Most of the items I gathered from Amazon. The ampules of injectable Vitamin C are a bit harder, as the FDA has recognized the power of intravenous/injectable vitamin C and tried to stamp it out. I got mine from British Columbia in Canada after simply doing a Google search on it. The cattle prod was bought at QC Supply.

Any one of these methods would handle the venom, but personally I would use all three to be absolutely sure. That's just me. The vitamin C treatment is consistently used on animals to counter venomous bites. Charcoal has been used to great success again and again. The cattle prod delivers just enough current to slap the venom around, beat it up, and neutralize it and has been used with much success. You don't need a doctor filling your body with ugly ANTI-venom and charging you $40K for the pleasure.

TAKE THESE STEPS AS INSTANTLY AS YOU CAN AFTER BEING BITTEN.

Almost all snake bites go into the muscle, NOT the veins. From there, the venom is absorbed NOT by the blood but by the lymphatic system and spread through the body.

We can solve any venom issue with a four stage COUNTER ATTACK on the venom. FYI, 99% of poisonous snakes in the USA are Pit Vipers (triangle head containing venom glands). The rattlesnake is a Pit Viper.

1. Clean the area FIRST with the alcohol pad, and thoroughly wash your hands. Use a disposable scalpel to cut a small “X” on the fang marks to open them up a bit more IF the wound is not big enough. Opening the wound a bit more just allows the charcoal binder to enter more easily. Activated Charcoal is a binder that latches on to toxins and renders them INEFFECTIVE. Take large amounts of the charcoal paste included in the Kit and spread it IN the wound and ALL AROUND the wound 4-6 inches all over, minimum. Wrap the area with the included rubber tape, creating a poultice around the area. The charcoal will suck the venom to itself and bind to it through the skin. An hour later, wipe this off and apply a new dressing with NEW charcoal.

2. Swallow 4 charcoal tabs included in the kit. We want the charcoal moving through the whole body as fast as possible to bind anything it comes across. This is perfectly safe. Take 2 more every half hour for a few hours.

3. Start using the “cattle prod” electric treatment included in the Kit (blue device). This sounds scary but isn't. It's a fairly light electric shock and this has been used VERY successfully to “shock demolish” venom (black widow, brown recluse, scorpion, snake). It's amazing how FAST you will feel better using this. Several treatments. “Prod” yourself or have someone else do it, and when the body naturally pulls away, that's considered a treatment. Zap the area in different sections, wherever the venom has travelled.

4. Vitamin C is incredible in HIGH DOSES to destroy venom. In fact, intravenous Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) has been used to cure many forms of cancer. So venom is nothing for this powerful antioxidant. NOTE: if you are taking the charcoal tabs, no need to swallow any of the oral Vitamin C, just use ampule of pure Vitamin C and the syringe to inject it directly into the muscle around the bite. Here's how. Clean the area with an alcohol wipe. Take one of the disposable syringes and open it. Open a vial of Vitamin C. Press the plunger down inside the device and then stick the needle into the vitamin C ampule at the top. Suck a full load of that good liquid into the needle. Hold the needle upright and ‘flick' the plastic part to make sure there's NO AIR in the needle. Push the plunger a little until you get a drop or two of liquid coming out, confirming that there is NO AIR. Not one bubble…this is very important. Stick the needle into the muscle “near to” or “around” the bite, less than a quarter inch into the skin, up to a quarter inch. Press the plunger firmly and steadily, and deliver the liquid into the muscle surrounding the bite.

Good work. Let the vitamin do “its thing”.

Note: about 25% of venomous snake bites are “dry” – no venom. Let's hope yours is.

————————-

If you think that anti-venom given at the hospital is a silver bullet, please educate yourself. Treatment with Anti-venom is massively expensive, often very damaging to the body and some people can have permanent damage to their bodies or come close to death. It is important to know the facts so you can make the best decision for you in an emergency.

A popular ‘generic' anti-venom is called CRO-FAB. This drug is $3800 per vial and you can easily need 10-15 vials, depending on your size. There's NO guarantee with CroFab either. There are MUCH better, cheaper and natural ways to stop Venom in its tracks.

————————-

Replied by Cowboy Mike
(Texas)
10/27/2019
5 out of 5 stars

Hi Brad!

Thank you for your very informative article on treating snake bites. How and where do I buy of pure Vitamin C ampules? Is there a certain brand?

Replied by Brad
(NorCal)
12/18/2019
5 out of 5 stars

Hi Cowboy, sorry, Earthclinic doesn't seem to alert me to a question. Here's a link to one I found, no special brand. You can get syringes from the same place or amazon. It's at Vitamin B12 Direct, then search Vitamin C ampules.

https://vitaminb12direct.com/product/injection-vitamin-c-500mg-50-amps/

Here's a great bit of advice from Pat Coleby I came across regarding Vit-C on venom:

After studying the literature, I (Pat Coleby – is a farmer who writes
books on animal care and lectures widely on the subject as well as being a
consultant.) decided that I really had nothing to lose trying Vitamin C on my
own farm animals. The first one was a pony, almost moribund, whose blood was
later diagnosed as having the largest amount of Tiger Snake venom the Vet
had ever seen in an animal. Within 24 hours of being unable to move, and
also having considerable difficulty in breathing due to pneumonia, the pony
was grazing happily in its owners garden, apparently quite healthy. I only
had one 30ml bottle of Vitamin C, half of what I would have liked, so I put
half of the bottle into each side of the neck by intramuscular injection.

After that we treated sundry dogs, two cats and several goats including a
stud buck. All recovered. A very valuable Alpaca which was being watched by
its owner from her kitchen window went down to the dam to examine
something. The owner, horrified, watched a large snake rise up and strike it on
the nose – the worst place – and thanked her lucky stars the Vitamin C was in
the fridge – not still on the shopping list. Rushing out with only 15 mls in
the syringe – she injected the Alpaca before any symptoms arose. The snake
had looked like a brown or a tiger, the result – happy ending.

The great advantage of Vitamin C is that anaphylaxis does not occur and
the variety of snake does not matter. Vitamin C is cheap, easy to store and
taking it on a hunting trip is no problem. All you need is a 20 ml syringe,
some largish needles – say No 18 – and the bottle of Vitamin C. It can all
be carried in a small wallet on ones belt. In between times it should be
kept in the fridge. Although the stuff can be carried in Summer without
deteriorating, I suggest to hunters that they get a fresh supply each Spring
just to be on the safe side.

Replied by Tim
(Australia)
02/26/2020
5 out of 5 stars

Hey Brad,

I agree with your last two items but not with cutting the skin.

Cutting the bite site is totally not needed with either the vitamin C or the DC Electric Shock treatment. You are just increasing your damage to the site, pain to the patient, delaying recovery time and creating a permenant tatoo just to show where that nasty bite was. Taking charcoal is not a bad idea, it can help to remove toxins from the bloodstream, but much of the venom is not traveling in the blood stream but in the Lymph system and a bit of charcoal in the incision will not be helpful in absorbing the massive level of toxins in the tissue.

The Electric shock is sufficient in my experience and the experiences of many friends and people I have talked to about this method. So long as you shock the area 6 to 8 one second duration shocks and then repeat if pain or swelling returns, you are good and recovery is quick. Cutting, sucking and packing with charcoal is really a bad idea. If all you have is charcoal then stick your limb in a bucket of crushed charcoal and water and leave it there for half a day or so, that will help to remove the toxins. A whole body charcoal bath is even better if you have the charcoal.

Some people I knew did that many years ago and it worked well. But as I said, the Electric shock is best, quickest and if you don't have that then by all means use the Vitamin C, under the skin or into the muscle near the bite site. Both work well but the HV DC electric shock works better in my opinion.

Replied by Kathie Clarke
(Clifton Forge VA)
05/01/2020

Brad, on Amazon I saw a hand-held electric battery operated stock prod that has a 6-volt shock. Is that too much voltage? How much voltage does you prod have?

Replied by Brad
(Cool, CA)
05/01/2020
5 out of 5 stars

Kathie, if you gave me a link I could check it.

Here are the two that I've found.... REALLY difficult to find due to the FDA, but here are working links. I've ordered both units and am keeping one at the barn and one at the house. Get one of them and use that, just not sure about the Amazon one.

https://www.e-stingrelief.com/model-33-outdoorsman.html

This one is from Italy, cheaper:

http://www.tecnimed.it/en/shop/uncategorized/ecosave/


Turmeric

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Posted by Steph Williams (Danville, VA) on 11/08/2007
5 out of 5 stars

I've had great success with turmeric to stop wounds from bleeding. If you catch a slice by the kitchen knife quick enough, the blood will coagulate behind a layer of turmeric. I also add turmeric to a warm water soak with sea salt or epsom salt to draw out infection/inflammation from wounds for my family. I treated our dog's copper head bite with a turmeric poultice. Her leg was swollen and the skin around the 2 puncture wounds was necrotic and oozing and after many soaks and poultices, it healed leaving no scar.

Replied by P Vandervoort
(Houston)
10/07/2014

Could you explain how to make the turmeric poultice for a venomous snake bite? My boxer was bitten a few hours ago. We cannot find the snake, but it is very swollen, painful; vet says venomous snake bite. She treated with antibiotics/steroids/dexamethasone, but I am a natural rearing breeder looking for ways to support her now.

Replied by Robert Henry
(Ten Mile, Tn.)
10/07/2014

HI U HOUSTON, , , , , , , , , folks in Israel use Oregano for snake bites.

======OLE RH==========

Replied by Om
(Hope, Bc Canada)
10/07/2014

Turmeric for bites --- in my experience I treated a cat that had been bitten on both sides of the spine apparently to be carried by a predator. She made off, luckily.

Most rescue people were saying that with conventional methods by vets, eventually there would be sepsis and death.

I have some knowledge of Eastern Medicine and poured Turmeric powder from the kitchen cupboard into both deep wounds.

Next morning she came out from under the bed in a good mood and everything went well. The wounds suppurated quickly and she was without pain. The meds the vet had given to me, were returned.

The turmeric root can also be used and it can be refrigerated for a few months. But when you extract the juice, your juicer will turn orange permanently.

Wounds can also be cleaned with fresh urine which is common practice in India. I am not familiar with poison bites but an Ayurvedic vet online could advise you for future references.

Namaste, Om

Replied by Mama To Many
(Tennessee)
10/07/2014

Hello,

Not to deter you from using turmeric, which I think is an amazing herb, but to add this just for others who may not have turmeric on hand...

Activated charcoal has been used to treat poisonous snake bites.

http://www.charcoalremedies.com/snake_bites

Charcoal can also be given internally to support removing poisons, whatever external treatment is chosen. It is tasteless and usually easy to get animals to take when mixed in whatever they normally eat.

I keep a quart jar of water with 4 Tablespoons of Charcoal in it in my cabinet for emergencies like this. (If someone got bitten by a poisonous snake, I would have them begin drinking charcoal water and immediately apply a charcoal poultice. We live a long way from a hospital and the sooner treatment begins, the better. If an emergency room visit is needed, at least the initiation of treatment has not had to wait for an hour or more.)

~Mama to Many~

Replied by Theresa
(Mpls., Mn)
10/08/2014

Hey P Vandervoort!

Another fellow breeder here. Sorry to hear about your boxer getting a snake bite :(

It sounds like your vet hit all the right beats re: western treatment. Given the time that has already passed, I would consider a homeopathic approach.

Consider these remedies [not my words, here is the source: http://www.holisticvetclinic.net/pages/rattlesnake_bite_kit ] :

Homeopathics

Hypericum 30C & Ledum 30C - these two homeopathics are the first homeopathic remedies I recommend after any kind of puncture wound, including snake bites. Start with one and alternate every 10 minutes.

Cedron 6X - For rattlesnake bites-can be in alternation with the Hypericum and Ledum. For severe rattlesnake bites, I would give Cedron in between the Hypericum & Ledum.

Herbs

Echinacea - this is the herb you might take to boost your immune system when you feel a cold coming on. Apparently, there is a substance in this herb that denatures the rattlesnake venom. I recommend taking Echinacea every 20-30 minutes until you see the swelling and inflammation subsiding.

*******

In addition I would google "homeopathy snake bite remedy" and then read up on all the hits - you will find some remedies commonly repeated, ie those named above, however you will also gain additional ideas for natural treatment by reading as many stories as possible. Part of a successful treatment is YOU: you need to sense and feel if you are on the right track, so follow your gut instincts as you treat. If you just feel one remedy is more appropriate for your particular dog in this particular situation, go with your gut. Using homeopathy **done right** is time consuming, requiring frequent treatments and alternating remedies. Ideally you do NOT touch the pills with your bare hands, rather you tip them into an envelope and crush them and then tip the powder into your dog's mouth.

I am not trained in homeopathy however I have used the 'cook book' approach by looking up illnesses and remedies in the Materia Medica and despite my huge lack of knowledge in this area I have been successful in treating acute conditions with the like cures like approach.

Good luck with your boxer and please report back!


Turmeric, Coconut Oil, Honey, Castor Oil

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Posted by Flower's Mom (Pueblo Of Acoma, Nm) on 09/15/2017
5 out of 5 stars

My dog, Molly, got bit by a rattlesnake on the leg just above her foot two nights ago. By the time I saw her yesterday morning, her whole leg was swollen to three times its normal size and she could not bend it or walk. I put a teaspoon each of ground turmeric, organic coconut oil, organic raw honey, a couple pinches of ground black pepper and 2 droppers of colloidal silver into a few ounces of raw ground turkey and mixed it up really well and gave it to her on an empty stomach. She ate it up with no hesitation and laid down. Then I applied a castor oil pack over the 2 puncture wounds and held it there for about 40 minutes or so, during which time she rested. As she was not showing any other signs of distress, such as breathing difficulty, seizure, etc., but was sleeping, I put her in the hands of the benevolent Creator and left for work. I hated to leave her, but I had no choice.

I went home to check on her at lunch time and was thrilled to see her relaxing outside the front door! I mixed up another dose of the turmeric, OCO, honey, pepper and colloidal silver in the ground turkey and gave it to her again. As I did not have time to sit with her to do the castor oil pack, I just put a couple drops on the puncture wounds and went back to work. When I arrived home in the evening she was again outside and got up to greet me when I drove in. The swelling in her leg had gone down some more and it now looked about 2 times its normal size and she did not appear to be in as much pain. She still could not walk so I helped her inside and again mixed up another dose of the same ingredients in the raw turkey and again applied a castor oil pack to the site. She rested comfortably throughout the evening and slept good all night. This morning the swelling in her leg has gone down so that the leg looks almost normal and she can bend it, but the foot is still pretty swollen. It looks like a ball at the end of a stick, but she is starting to put a little weight on it. I will continue to give her the same mix morning and evening until all the symptoms have subsided. I did not expect her recovery to be so rapid, so I am thrilled to share my experience. Thank you again, Earth Clinic, and all those involved in maintaining this wonderful resource! It has been lifesaving for me and my family!

Replied by Mama To Many
(Tennessee)
09/15/2017

Awesome job, Flower's Mom. Thanks so much for sharing! We see rattlesnakes every so often where we live and your remedy will be at the top of my list of what to do if ever needed!

Replied by Flower's Mom
(Pueblo Of Acoma, Nm)
09/20/2017

Thank you, Mama. Snakes are a real threat, and treatment for bites by vets and the medical community can be just as dangerous as getting bit and not always effective, not to mention very expensive. Like I said, this website has truly been a lifesaver for us, and I am truly grateful. Blessings!

Replied by Flower's Mom
(Pueblo Of Acoma, Nm)
06/06/2018
5 out of 5 stars

Well, another one of my pups got bit by a rattlesnake while I was at work! This time it was one of my little ones, barely 6 months old and he took the hit right on his lip! By the time I got home that evening, his head was so swollen, I hardly recognized him. The swelling came up around his eyes and nose, and his whole neck and throat were also swollen. He just shook his head and howled in pain. I had to modify my treatment somewhat because he could not open his mouth. I laid him on his side with a towel under his head and administered the Golden Paste mixture (organic coconut oil warmed to liquify, powdered organic turmeric and black pepper, organic raw honey and colloidal silver) in an eyedropper to the corner of his mouth and hoped that some of it made its way down his throat. I also added Throb-Ease and Fection, 2 herbal formulas given to me by my naturopath, and applied a warm washcloth to his lip. He howled for a moment, then relaxed and went to sleep with the washcloth still in place. I kept this up every 2 hours throughout the night and the following day, and by the end of the second day, I could see some of the swelling had softened and was going down. I still had him sleep with me that night, but he was quiet and slept peacefully for several hours. That following morning he was able to open his mouth a little, so I gave him the Golden Paste mixture in a little bit soft food which he ate heartily, although his lip was hanging down. I put the colloidal silver in his water. He was drinking a lot of water and I just kept refilling it, adding the silver every time. One of the puncture wounds remained open and dripped, which I hoped meant that the venom was also draining and not coursing through his little body. Needless to say, he survived, and after a week and a half only has a small scab remaining on his lip.

I pray that none of you ever have to deal with this, but if you do, Golden Paste works wonders! God bless!