Michelle and Kaylee Lynch were heading to their backyard swing set when a 70-centimeter brown snake reared up. Brown snakes are highly venomous, but the girls didn’t have to face the deadly viper unaided. The Ipswich, Australia, family’s cattle dog mix, River, was there in a flash.
The girls’ dad, Ben Lynch, says “River came bursting out and jumped on the snake.” River ended up killing the snake, but in the process, the snake bit her. I’m not sure if the family realized River was bitten, because 12 hours later, she became almost paralyzed, and it was then that they rushed her to the vet.
The 18-month-old dog is still at the vet’s, receiving very expensive antivenom treatment and other therapies. Although she’s not yet able to eat, she’s able to walk a little again, and is doing much better. Her prognosis is good if she continues to respond well to treatment.
What a heroine. We wish her the very best for a full and speedy recovery. The Lynches say they can’t wait to get their amazing dog back.
Dogsters, sometimes when I run this kind of story, we get a few comments wondering if what the dog did was truly protecting her people, or if she just wanted to have a go at an odd-looking critter for kicks. I wonder what you think? I’m of the school where she somehow realized there was danger and her protective instinct kicked in.
Here’s a description of Australian cattle dogs – which River is at least partly made of – that helps me believe that it was her protective instinct and not just a game. “The Australian cattle dog is loyal to its handler, brave, hardy, alert, optimistic, and active. While wary of strangers, the breed bonds closely to its family…The Australian cattle dog personality is often reserved with strangers and even fiercely protective when they perceive that their property and/or persons are being threatened.” I’d love to know your thoughts, Dogsters.