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NJ Press: Man Critical after Cobra bite

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Posted by: W von Papineu at Tue Feb 1 09:56:30 2011  [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by W von Papineu ]  
   

THE RECORD (Hackensack, New Jersey) 01 February 11 Fair Lawn man, 25, in critical condition after pet albino cobra bite (Marlene Naanes)
Fair Lawn: A borough man is in critical condition after his pet albino Monocled Cobra bit him, sending him into respiratory distress, police said.
The 25-year-old man bought the cobra, an eastern diamondback rattlesnake and a copperhead snake in Pennsylvania earlier Monday, thinking the snakes’ venom sacks had been removed.
The cobra bit the man about 6:30 p.m., animal control officer Rich DuBarton said. He began having trouble breathing, and his wife called 911 about 9:30 p.m., said Sgt. Rich Schultz.
“When he realized the sacks weren’t removed and he was having issues breathing, they called an ambulance,” Schultz said.
DuBarton said police at the scene said the man was gray and barely breathing.
“The only place you see a cobra is at the zoo,’ DuBarton said. “That’s not something you mess around with. When they bite somebody, it’s usually fatal.”
The man was taken to St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center in Paterson and was later transferred to Jacobi Medical Center in the Bronx, N.Y. The hospital has the only snakebite treatment center in the Tri-state area, according to the hospital.
Police did not identify the man.
DuBarton removed the snakes, which were in aquariums, from the River Road home Monday night. The home also had scorpions, tarantulas and a rabbit, DuBarton said.
“That cobra was not happy,” he said. “He had his hood up. I just locked the lids…he definitely was not happy. He was striking at the glass.”
The rattlesnake also was shaking its tail as DuBarton carried it out in an aquarium, he said.
DuBarton took them to the borough pound. The state fish and wildlife department is expected to take the snakes Tuesday.
Owners of snakes need special training and permits, police said.
“This department wishes to remind residents that ownership of species such as these carry immense responsibility, and should always be treated with respect regardless of whether the venom sac has been removed or not,” the Fair Lawn police department said in a statement issued Tuesday morning.
Fair Lawn man, 25, in critical condition after pet albino cobra bite


   

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