Wagga's veterinarians have issued a warning for pet owners across the region, after an "inquisitive young cat" was bitten by a snake this week.
With the mouse plague driving up snake numbers across the region, the city's vets are prepping for a particularly venomous spring and summer.
The 18-month-old cat, named Kit, was bitten by a snake in Glenfield on Monday and was showing signs of paralysis when it was taken to Wagga Wagga Veterinary Hospital.
To the delight of his owners Kit has made a full recovery, but local vet Andrea Barnard said the incident is a reminder to other pet owners as we head into snake season.
"Try to keep the grass and vegetation around your yard to a minimum," Dr Barnard said.
Animals bitten by snakes will often show symptoms such as wobblyness, paralysis or bleeding and Dr Barnard said if you suspect your animal has been bitten to take it to a vet immediately.
"It's a little unpredictable but we have a very good survival rate when we see the cats and dogs early in the progression of the symptoms," she said.
"The longer we wait and the more severe those signs are the less likely they are to survive."
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Snakes are most active in the warmer months and Dr Barnard said snake bites usually start occuring with regularity in late August and early September.
She said the combination of the lockdown and the mouse plague means it is likely to be a particularly busy season this year.
"I expect this year we're gonna see a lot more snake bites because they've had more mice to eat and they've bred up so there's more of them getting around," Dr Barnard said.
"And also with the lockdown the only thing people can really do at the moment is walk their dogs so I think more people will be out and about walking their dog in the bush where they are more likely to run into a snake."
If you come across a snake in a residential area in Wagga it is advised you safely remove yourself, your pets and anyone else from the vicinity and contact the local snake-catcher to handle the situation.
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