Man's horror as adder bites dog at Falling Foss, near Whitby

A distraught dog owner almost lost his beloved pet after it was bitten by an adder - Britain's only venomous snake - at Falling Foss.

Wednesday, 7th July 2021, 12:49 pm
Updated Wednesday, 7th July 2021, 12:50 pm

The snake struck close to a path near the river while Adam Lane was out at the beauty spot with his dog Enzo, an American Bulldog and Staffordshire Bull Terrier cross.

At first, he didn’t realise what had happened – it was only when Adam had to stop the car on the way home that the penny dropped.

And he got a further horrifying shock when the vet – the only one near his home which had anti-venom – asked him to stump up £750 straight away or Enzo would have to die, he said.

Adam Lane was out for a walk at Falling Foss, near Whitby, when an adder bit his dog Enzo.
Adam Lane was out for a walk at Falling Foss, near Whitby, when an adder bit his dog Enzo.

Recalling the recent experience, Adam, 26, said: “The way it happened was a bit mad.

“Nothing kicked off straight away. I was driving back to my home in Stillington and my car started smoking, it was a write-off.

“I opened the back door to let Enzo out, he had been quiet and thought he was just tired from the walk. I noticed his paw was as big as his head.

“I put it down to a thorn in his paw but looked like he had two little spots. I didn’t think anything of it but my friend said to me ‘what if it’s a snake bite?’

“Enzo was fine all the way through the walk and he’d been running round being his usual happy self. His leg started to swell and he was laid on the floor having a fit with froth coming out the side of his mouth.”

Adam’s dad then had to take Enzo to a vet which had stocks of anti-venom but he said the vets had asked for half the money up front, which he didn’t have.

Enzo was eventually treated and once recovered, was allowed back home.

Father-of-two Adam, who works part-time for the Thirteen Group, said: “He was okay when he was back home but wanted lots of cuddles but he’s finished his painkillers and is loving life again now.”

Adam wants fellow pet owners to be aware of the dangers of snakes while out and about in woodland and rural areas.

They saw the snake near a path by the river.

“My friend had shouted ‘oh my God, there’s a snake’ – Enzo ran over and [unwittingly] stood on it. The snake then left.

“We got some photos and the vet asked what type of snake it was.

"There were a lot of people there when we were there and it wasn’t even that hot for the UK.”

He said a smaller dog, like his friend’s miniature Patterdale, would not have survived a snake bite.

Adam also wants to make people aware that his pet insurance had not covered snake bites.

A friend has helped him recoup most of the costs of his vets’ bill after setting up a Go Fund Me page.

He said it was fortunate his friend was with him in the car and guessed that the snake had bitten Enzo.

“I was the unluckiest person ever on that day, but the luckiest with the way that it happened,” Adam added.