Keeping venomous snakes as pets

Handling venomous snakes

You must handle snakes correctly to reduce the chance of injury to you and the snake. 

Clean your hands before handling snakes, especially if you have been holding food such as mice.

Consider all of the following below before handling a venomous snake:

  • look at the behaviour of your snake as you may avoid injury by recognising that your snake is stressed, anxious or poised to strike
  • only handle snakes when you really need to
  • always have someone else there when you handle venomous snakes in case you need help
  • if you are bitten, seek medical attention immediately - stay calm, sit quietly and wait for an ambulance
  • always wash your hands after handling snakes.

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Last updated: 15 February 2016

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