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Warning issued after woman's pet dog dies in back garden

Jess Hardiman

Published 
| Last updated 

Warning issued after woman's pet dog dies in back garden

Featured Image Credit: GoFundMe

A woman has issued a warning after her pet dog died in her back garden, having heartbreakingly said an unexpected goodbye last weekend.

Jessie, 31, was devastated when her French Bulldog Knox suddenly fell ill, having been hanging out in the back garden in Bell Post Hill, Geelong, Australia.

Jessie took Knox out for a toilet break at about 10am last Saturday, but sadly he had to be put down the following day after tragedy struck – despite desperate, and expensive, attempts to save him.

Just months before, he had racked up a costly AUD $7,500 vet bill after swallowing a portion of a squeaky toy.

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But this time, things were looking a lot more pricey – and much more extreme.

Knox was bitten by a snake. Credit: GoFundMe
Knox was bitten by a snake. Credit: GoFundMe

Knox and Jessie had headed out into the garden when a tiger snake suddenly fell to the ground in front of them, having previously been concealed behind some corrugated iron attached to the fence.

Knox bolted towards the snake and the two ended up in a ‘bit of a tussle’, which sadly didn’t end in his favour.

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Jessie’s sister-in-law and housemate Jasmine Lawrence, 27, had been inside sleeping at the time, but was woken by a ‘horrific scream’.

“Jessie came running in and said, ‘Knox has been bitten by a snake’,” she told 7News.

“They’d had a bit of a tussle, and Knox had bitten the snake and the snake had bitten Knox at the same time.”

Worried about the snake’s fast-acting, deadly venom, Jessie and Jasmine rushed to the vets with Knox, who had started shaking and vomiting.

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While the vet administered anti-venom, the dog suffered a seizure and was taken to the emergency department, where vets said he needed a ventilator or would likely die.

For just 24 hours, a ventilator would cost them $10,000, but they decided to go ahead with it to ‘give him a chance’.

“(Jessie) just kept saying she didn’t want to let him go, so I said I will work it out,” said Jasmine, who used her savings, borrowed from others and set up a GoFundMe.

But while Knox survived the night on the ventilator, the pair struggled with the prospect of having to fork out another $6,000 a day to keep him alive, having already spent $13,5000 on treatment.

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Credit: GoFundMe
Credit: GoFundMe

“When you add it all up, we were looking at between $80,000 to $100,000,” Jasmine said, explaining how Knox had sustained significant brain damage.

“It was the hardest decision I’ve ever had to make on behalf of someone else because (Jessie) had no words.”

The $4,200 raised through the GoFundMe will be used to pay back money borrowed from friends and family.

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A snake catcher, who visited the house to give them advice, telling them the issue was unfortunately very common, especially as it was nearly summer.

Jasmine continued: “He said, in future — and I wish I knew this sooner — just monitor your dogs really closely and, when it’s warmer, take them to an area to go to the toilet that’s really, really open, so you can see everything.

“It’s crazy that it’s happened in the backyard. He wasn’t in a park, unleashed, but (the snake catcher) said that happens a lot as well, that dogs off the leash at a park will go and sniff a garden bed and a snake will bite them.

“He said you just have to remain really, really vigilant.

“The snake just reacted with its instincts as well, so you can’t be mad at the snake — it’s just horrible and really unfortunate.”

Topics: Animals, Australia, Dog

Jess Hardiman
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