Dog recovering after rattlesnake bite in Jamul

Donations from 10News viewers help save his life
Posted at 10:21 PM, Oct 13, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-15 02:34:48-04

A Jamul woman is warning dog owners to be careful after a rattlesnake bit three of her dogs Tuesday, leaving one in critical condition.

Just after 4 p.m. Tuesday, Hillary Dixon pulled up to her Jamul home and saw several of her dogs barking at something inside the fence.

“I grabbed that shovel, it was over there and I just started swinging and I whacked about a 3 ½ foot southern pacific snake." Dixon said. "Then I went looking for my dogs, and I found three of them have been bitten. 

"Honey" was left with a swollen face after she was bitten on the nose and "Sassy" was bitten near her eye.

“As of today we weren’t sure if her eye was going to be saved,” Dixon said.

But it's the patriarch of the pack that is in critical condition. "Nicky" lay motionless on a dog bed at Dixon's home when 10News talked to the family Thursday. 

All three dogs had the antivenin, which cost $2,800, Dixon said. But now, Nicky needs an expensive blood transfusion.

“I feel I am dying inside. Part of my soul is dying,” Dixon said. “I’m trying everything to save him,” Dixon said.

It’s money that Hilary, a single mother to a disabled child, just doesn’t have.

“The injury on him, is now his whole body, but he was bitten right here,” Dixson said through tears, showing a black wound on Nicky’s neck.

Dixon rushed Nicky to an emergency veterinarian overnight Thursday. According to Dixon, a veterinarian administered a vial of anti-venom at 2:30 a.m. Friday and he is continuing his treatment. He was showing signs of improvement, Dixon said. 

Dixon had this warning for other pet owners. 

“Here we are in October, getting ready for Halloween, thinking about the end of the year, thinking about the elections, thinking about winter coming, nobody is thinking about rattlesnakes being in the yard,” Dixon said.

Dixon’s friends set up a GoFundMe page to raise money for Nicky’s blood transfusion. If you would like to help, click here.