Poisonous snakes and dogs

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Poisonous snakes and dogs

New postby Fisherman-Jim » Mon Jul 14, 2014 5:46 pm

Hello, anyone have firsthand info on exactly how plentiful or rare timber rattlers and copperheads are in the Catskills? Have you ever seen one, anywhere ever? Now I am not asking out of fear for myself, because I would let the animal be, but I have a German Shorthaired Pointer here, who literally can go into any wooded area and come out with a deer bone in her mouth, because she can find any and every deer kill every time, I have a skull with antlers here that she handed me, she picks up every trail from any animal in the woods every time. Now because she is trustworthy and stays with me infallibly, I can let her do as she chooses. It's part of my hiking joy to let her be as close to what she loves as I can, as we romp thru the mountains together. So here is the deal, if I can expect to encounter even a single poisonous snake, EVER that my dog will not respect until the bite is done, should we even be there. Are there mountain areas that have never had a snake sighting and others that they are common on, I gather that Overlook mountain has signs warning people to stay on the trail as the snakes abound. Anyway, I have had dogs for twenty years and never encountered one, but I have never had a dog with a nose like this, and also never once been to the Catskills, typically I go to Virginia or Vermont National Forest as the backcountry camping rules are excellent as they also are in the Catskills...... So if you know where the snakes are or aren't, we would love to leave them alone on their mountain and choose another..... (runon I know)

Thanks if u know,,,!
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Re: Poisonous snakes and dogs

New postby dundee » Mon Jul 14, 2014 6:43 pm

I am not a snake expert, but I've never seen a RS or CH in the Catskills in my 20+ years of hiking there. I have seen several RS in an the Lake George area in the ADKs. They are very shy creatures and want nothing to do with people. I cannot say what they will do re: dogs. Leashes are made for several reasons, however.
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Re: Poisonous snakes and dogs

New postby Fisherman-Jim » Tue Jul 15, 2014 7:00 am

dundee wrote:I am not a snake expert, but I've never seen a RS or CH in the Catskills in my 20+ years of hiking there. I have seen several RS in an the Lake George area in the ADKs. They are very shy creatures and want nothing to do with people. I cannot say what they will do re: dogs. Leashes are made for several reasons, however.


Leashing a dog on a 5 to 20 mile hike and on a two day trip would not be practical, nor would the dog or I have any fun. I am not concerned about what I might see on the trail as I am about what my dog might smell and track. For every mile that I walk, she runs at least 5, she is a machine of sorts, beautiful to watch. I know some dogs are not this active, depriving her of her freedom would be senseless to me. Her purpose is to find stuff, bears wouldn't worry me as they could not touch her with her speed, and she would back off due to their size anyway. ........ just don't know here....
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Re: Poisonous snakes and dogs

New postby dundee » Tue Jul 15, 2014 9:27 am

You've just listed several reasons WHY you should leash your dog. What about porkies, raccoons, etc? What about other hikers? Other hikers leash their dogs on trips like this.
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Re: Poisonous snakes and dogs

New postby mtnclimber » Tue Jul 15, 2014 12:14 pm

Very few snakes in the Catskills. Once in a while you will see a garder snake. But, there are lots rattlesnakes on Overlook Mtn and Echo Lake. You can also find them on Tremper Mtn. There are rattlesnake dens at those 3 locations. Getting tagged by a rattlesnake is a pretty bad event. Copperheads are mainly a pain event. Both are pretty big snakes. They are as thick as a mans arm. If you stay away from those 3 areas you are in pretty good shape. You can also check out the section on this web site which shows the locations where you can find them.

A lot of hikers bring their dogs along for a hike without leashes on. Everyone brings a leash for those difficult moments. Porkies can be difficult for some dogs. Some hikers bring a pair of pliers in case they need to pull them out. Black bears can be an issue. Other dogs for sure.

Where are you planning on backpacking?
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Re: Poisonous snakes and dogs

New postby dundee » Tue Jul 15, 2014 3:03 pm

"A lot of hikers bring their dogs along for a hike without leashes on. Everyone brings a leash for those difficult moments. Porkies can be difficult for some dogs. Some hikers bring a pair of pliers in case they need to pull them out. Black bears can be an issue. Other dogs for sure."

Not everyone brings a leash. I constantly run into people who have a dog on the trail, but fail to bring a leash. If a dog is leashed it greatly reduces the chances of having a run-in with a porkie, a snake, bear, raccoon or another hiker's dog. If the problem is prevented in the first place, there will be no need to pull out quills with pliers. Then there are ticks.
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Re: Poisonous snakes and dogs

New postby Fisherman-Jim » Tue Jul 15, 2014 5:01 pm

mtnclimber wrote:Very few snakes in the Catskills. Once in a while you will see a garder snake. But, there are lots rattlesnakes on Overlook Mtn and Echo Lake. You can also find them on Tremper Mtn. There are rattlesnake dens at those 3 locations. Getting tagged by a rattlesnake is a pretty bad event. Copperheads are mainly a pain event. Both are pretty big snakes. They are as thick as a mans arm. If you stay away from those 3 areas you are in pretty good shape. You can also check out the section on this web site which shows the locations where you can find them.

A lot of hikers bring their dogs along for a hike without leashes on. Everyone brings a leash for those difficult moments. Porkies can be difficult for some dogs. Some hikers bring a pair of pliers in case they need to pull them out. Black bears can be an issue. Other dogs for sure.

Where are you planning on backpacking?


Well if I decide to do a Catskill pack, it looks like it will need to be in the Western section, Ulster and Green counties seem to be off limits for me in my situation. In my opinion a porcupine would be more dangerous than a bear to the dog, as the dog might well challenge a porcupine but not a bear, but the porcupine would be a learning experience for my girl, however both animals, even a 500 pound bear, are little kittens when compared to a rattler, which is what makes me think twice about the Catskills. As for dog leashes, there is no right answer, as some dogs need to be leashed for either aggression or due to the fact that if they got free inside a forest area they would be gone in 30 seconds and never seen again. I came upon two hikers two weeks ago here in Jersey, that had two dogs on leashes, my dog ran up wanting just to play, they barked and yelped and almost pulled their owners arms off. I thought the people were going to lambaste me for not having my girl on a leash, but they did not, probably out of embarrassment, as their dogs obviously could never be allowed to be free, if they had said something I would calmly ask them if how they would like to be leashed for their entire lives. I then came upon a woman with an unleashed border collie and her dog and mine ran up the side of the mountain and down three times and back and forth seeing who was faster just having a blast of a time, the next man had two golden retrievers taking a swim in the river. I always bring a leash, on my last trip to the Green mountains, I got there at 1:30 in the morning and could not get a fire started, nor pitch my tent in the dark, so I pulled out the sleeping bag tied the dog to me and we slept under the stars, as a duck in the pond behind us warbled all morning at this point, when we woke up I freed her and she immediately went duck hunting... Thanks for the response...!
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Re: Poisonous snakes and dogs

New postby Fisherman-Jim » Tue Jul 15, 2014 5:27 pm

dundee wrote:You've just listed several reasons WHY you should leash your dog. What about porkies, raccoons, etc? What about other hikers? Other hikers leash their dogs on trips like this.


Well in all reality, though I am not a hunter at all, I can say that a porcupine, while mildly dangerous is in no way a serious threat to an animal that is used by hunters to track and hunt raccoons, bears and even cougars. As for other hikers, if they are allergic to dog licks my dog could well be fatal. Other people might need to keep their dog on a leash, to me leashing a dog for two or more days when they are inside a candystore, which is what the forest is to this breed, is just plain cruel. Besides the leashed dog learns nothing, my girl is just about a year old and is still learning. I have photos of my girl chasing whitetail, some owners no matter how excellent the dog is can not allow this as the dog will follow the fleeing deer into the next county, the thing freedom breeds respect, what does a chained animal respect? Thanks for responding though, your ideas are not wrong, you just have never seen a quality shorthair in motion. Here are some shots of her and the parks that I have visited, none of those photos can happen on a leash..... https://www.flickr.com/photos/105281199@N03/ https://www.flickr.com/photos/105281199 ... 055511795/
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Re: Poisonous snakes and dogs

New postby dundee » Tue Jul 15, 2014 5:36 pm

Maybe a porkie isn't "dangerous", but it sure is painful, but going in and when you have to pull hem out. How about an ifection from the quills? You want a dog to go thru this because you are too lazy to leash it?

You think it's cruel to leash your dog on a hike? Oh, please! Why can other hikers leash their dogs and you can't? What about courtesy ot other hikers? Every dog is friendly, just like yours. You never heard that one, I bet.

What is going to happen when you come acrose another hiker and they don't have their dog leashed either and it goes after your?

Why is there a leash law in the ADK High Peaks? Because of al the people with unleashed dogs have created too many problems.

You'll do what you want, but after something happens, don't cry about it.

This reminds of the true story of the couple who used to walk their unleashed dog in the back roads and woods of Lake Luzerne (southern ADKs). Their lovely (and friendly!) family dog went running ahead and they heard it scream a few minutes later. It's skull had been broken becuae it got its head into an animal trap. The dog died a painful death. They screamed bloody murder and denounced all trapper as evil villains. Truth is, trapping is legal and if they had ha their dog on a leash, this probably wouldn't have happened.
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Re: Poisonous snakes and dogs

New postby Fisherman-Jim » Tue Jul 15, 2014 5:54 pm

dundee wrote:Maybe a porkie isn't "dangerous", but it sure is painful, but going in and when you have to pull hem out. How about an ifection from the quills? You want a dog to go thru this because you are too lazy to leash it?

You think it's cruel to leash your dog on a hike? Oh, please! Why can other hikers leash their dogs and you can't? What about courtesy ot other hikers? Every dog is friendly, just like yours. You never heard that one, I bet.

What is going to happen when you come acrose another hiker and they don't have their dog leashed either and it goes after your?

Why is there a leash law in the ADK High Peaks? Because of al the people with unleashed dogs have created too many problems.

You'll do what you want, but after something happens, don't cry about it.



There are dogs, and then there are German Shorthairs, a shorthair is not obedient, it's highly intelligent, obedient dogs heel and do their tricks, shorthairs can feed their owners if need be . The human brain just like the dog brain is a muscle, it needs to experience new things to learn, grow and be strong. My dog has never been unleashed in the Catskills, because I have never been there with her, she has been unleashed deep inside of Vermont and my previous dogs have been camping with me in Virginia many times. Have you ever sat around a campfire and toasted chicken and hot dogs to share with a dog that is waiting unleashed by your side to eat? Show me a leashed German Shorthair in the forest, and I will show you an unhappy dog, and an ignorant human. Live for freedom, not chains. That said after seeing snake bites here, I am not sure that my dog will ever even see the Catskills much less romp in them, seems sad because it's near me and clearly a beautiful place.
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