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Crabtownboy
01-27-2011, 08:40 AM
I was talking at lunch with one of the Ph.D. students here. She was born on Malta. I asked, "What kind of snake bite Paul? The people with him were amazed his arm did not even sell. They expected him to die."

She replied, "There are no poisonous snakes on Malta."

So, why, in your opinion, was the story in Acts written as it was?
Why were the people amazed that Paul was not harmed?

I believe there are several good explanations, but I would like to get others take on this event.

Acts 8: 3 Paul gathered a pile of brushwood and, as he put it on the fire, a viper, driven out by the heat, fastened itself on his hand. 4 When the islanders saw the snake hanging from his hand, they said to each other, “This man must be a murderer; for though he escaped from the sea, the goddess Justice has not allowed him to live.” 5 But Paul shook the snake off into the fire and suffered no ill effects. 6 The people expected him to swell up or suddenly fall dead; but after waiting a long time and seeing nothing unusual happen to him, they changed their minds and said he was a god.

Elaphe situal leopardina (Bonaparte, 1834)
Leopard Snake
maltese: Lifgha
Size: Up to one metre long.
Colouration: Dorsally pale brown with dark brown or reddish black-edged transverse spots and a forked black mark on the occiput and nape; ventrally white checkered with black.
Biology: This is a common species, but is not frequently encountered since it prefers dark and sheltered localities. It is common in shaded valleys, often coiling itself around tree branches. It forages for food at dawn and dusk, and feeds on young birds, lizards, geckos, frogs, mice, small rats, and small snakes.
Records: This species is one of the indifgenous snakes of the Maltese Islands, and has been recorded from Malta, Gozo and Comino. It is possible that this species was the "viper" which bit the Apostle paul on his arrival in Malta.

http://www.shadowservices.com/nature/Maltese/biology/snakes.htm


Some believe it was the Leopard Snake that bite Paul.

http://www.cretegazette.com/oneadmin/_files/Image/2005-11/snakes01.jpg

Said by snake lovers to be the most beautiful of all European snakes, the leopard snake is common throughout many low-lying parts of Crete. Rather unfortunately, this handsome reptile does sport a V-shaped marking behind its head, leading to confusion in the minds of many with the deadly adder of northern Europe. Add to this the fact that its local Greek name is Ochendra – similar to the general name given to vipers, Ochia – and you can see why this poor snake gets such a hard deal from humans here! In the north of Greece, however, the people are perhaps more at ease with the leopard snake, considering it a sign of luck to have one around and calling it Spitofido – or house snake.

http://www.cretegazette.com/archive/2005-11-snakes.php

preachinjesus
01-27-2011, 09:38 AM
Just because there aren't poisonous snakes now doesn't mean they didn't exist then.

The Acts story is authentic to Paul's ministry. Honestly if I was living in premodern, pre-scientific times and saw someone get bitten by a snake I knew was deadly I'd be surprised if they didn't immediately fall down and die. :)

Crabtownboy
01-27-2011, 09:46 AM
Just because there aren't poisonous snakes now doesn't mean they didn't exist then.

The Acts story is authentic to Paul's ministry. Honestly if I was living in premodern, pre-scientific times and saw someone get bitten by a snake I knew was deadly I'd be surprised if they didn't immediately fall down and die. :)

That is one possibility. It seems a bit strange to me that the poisonous would have all disappeared while non-poisonous ones are still there.

I think there are other explanations that are possible.

Not arguing, just discussing.

Amy.G
01-27-2011, 09:57 AM
Maybe your friend just doesn't know much about snakes?

Crabtownboy
01-27-2011, 10:04 AM
Maybe your friend just doesn't know much about snakes?

I expect she knows. She was born and grew up on Malta. Let's give her the benefit of the doubt. What explanations can you think of that would explain why the story is written as it is. Thanks.

freeatlast
01-27-2011, 10:05 AM
That is one possibility. It seems a bit strange to me that the poisonous would have all disappeared while non-poisonous ones are still there.

I think there are other explanations that are possible.

Not arguing, just discussing.

The answer is simple. all the snakes disappeared at some point for a period of years. Then as ships and people came in new varieties of non poisonous were brought in through trade and commerce.

preachinjesus
01-27-2011, 10:19 AM
That is one possibility. It seems a bit strange to me that the poisonous would have all disappeared while non-poisonous ones are still there.

I think there are other explanations that are possible.

Well certainly there are other options. One could reasonably assert that over the last 2,000 years micro-evolutionary changes have pushed the poisonous snakes out and kept the non-venomous.

Or at one point the citizens could have had a snake whacking day (I'm thinking of a Simpsons episode here) and killed all the poisonous snakes.

Or it could have been a stowaway on a ship that happened to find Paul.

There are, essentially, limitless possibilities (within reason.) Ah the good ole use of abductive reasoning. :)

Not arguing, just discussing.

Me too! :thumbsup:

glfredrick
01-27-2011, 10:20 AM
A very quick search returned some results about Maltese snakes (current) including this:

Herpetological trip to Malta
25th of April – 2nd of May 2007

A note on the toxicity of the saliva of Hemorrhois algirus
After being bitten in the right hand, three of us (Jan, Anniek and myself) developed swelling of lymphoid glands in our right armpit. This is most likely associated with Duvernoy's gland secretion. The largest Algerian Whip Snake had the opportunity to administer a long, chewing bite to all three of us. So far, we are all still as OK as before, so no severe consequences were associated with the bite.

And this:

Coluber viridiflavus carbonarius (Bonaparte, 1833)
Black Whip Snake
maltese: Serp iswed
Size: Up to two metres long.
Colouration: Dorsally the adult is black but juveniles are a dark green marked with grey and dark brown; ventraklly white to yellowish white. The different colouration at different ages has led some previous naturalists to think that this species was represented in the Maltese Islands by two subspecies - carbonarius and the nominative - viridiflavus.
Biology: This snake is very lively and often climbs trees in search of food. It hunts around mid-day and feeds on lizards, skinks, geckos, rats, mice, frogs, and the young and eggs of ground or tree-nesting birds. The Whip Snake lives in rock cracks and under rubble. When cornered it strikes and bites furiously. The animal hibernates during the winter months.
Records: A very widespread species recorded from Malta, Gozo and Comino.


In addition, there have been vipers sighted on Malta, wit the last "officially registered" sighting occuring in 1853.

I would not bet against the Bible story myself...

sag38
01-27-2011, 10:26 AM
Cat Snakes are poisonous and are found on Malta but are not indigenous. They could have been on the island during Paul's days. Their fangs are in the rear of their mouth offering a chewing type bite. I'm not sure of their toxicity. In recent years they were accidentally introduced to the island of Guam and have wreaked havoc with the eco system there.

Amy.G
01-27-2011, 10:36 AM
What explanations can you think of that would explain why the story is written as it is. Thanks.

The story is written as it is because it is true. I don't mean to sound flippant, but if God's word says it, it is true. I don't question the indigenous nature of Malta. I don't have to. Maybe that's over simplified, but that's me. :)

Crucified in Christ
01-27-2011, 01:24 PM
F.F. Bruce writes it better than I can so I will defer to him:

What kind of snake was it? The Greek word means “viper.” But we are told that there are no vipers, or indeed poisonous snakes of any kind, in Malta today. That, however, is not a conclusive argument. “The objections which have been advanced, that there are now no vipers in the island, and only one place where any wood grows, are too trivial to deserve notice. Such changes are natural and probable in a small island, populous and long civilized.” One might compare Ireland, which has been free from snakes for long centuries, although tradition asserts that they were once plentiful there until they were banished—by St. Patrick (according to the Christian account) or by Fionn MacCumhail (according to the earlier pagan legend). When we read that this snake “fastened on” Paul’s hand, we must understand that it bit him, if it was indeed a viper, since vipers do not coil.

sag38
01-27-2011, 01:28 PM
Vipers do coil up unless there is a difference between a pit viper and a viper. I assume they are one in the same. Rattlesnakes, cotton mouths, copperheads, bushmasters, furdelances, etc. mainly coil up before striking. However, they do not wrap around their victims as constrictors do. Is that what you mean by coiling up.

Crucified in Christ
01-27-2011, 02:39 PM
Vipers do coil up unless there is a difference between a pit viper and a viper. I assume they are one in the same. Rattlesnakes, cotton mouths, copperheads, bushmasters, furdelances, etc. mainly coil up before striking. However, they do not wrap around their victims as constrictors do. Is that what you mean by coiling up.

Sag38- I would ask the author what he meant by coiling up, but it will have to wait till I meet him one day in glory as he has taken up residence with our Lord.

North Carolina Tentmaker
01-27-2011, 06:00 PM
Do we have to accept the fact that the snake was poisonous? Does the Bible say that it was? KJVO folks may not like this but here are the facts.

Acts 28:3-8
[3] And when Paul had gathered a bundle of sticks, and laid them on the fire, there came a viper out of the heat, and fastened on his hand.
[4] And when the barbarians saw the venomous beast hang on his hand, they said among themselves, No doubt this man is a murderer, whom, though he hath escaped the sea, yet vengeance suffereth not to live.
[5] And he shook off the beast into the fire, and felt no harm.
[6] Howbeit they looked when he should have swollen, or fallen down dead suddenly: but after they had looked a great while, and saw no harm come to him, they changed their minds, and said that he was a god.

There are two places here where we are told it was a poisonous snake. In verse 3 the snake is called a viper and vipers are poisonous. The Greek word here is ἔχιδνα or echidna. The KJV translates it “viper” every time it is used, but it only refers to a snake in this verse. Every other time the Bible uses this word it is part of the phrase “generation of vipers” and refers to wicked men. No other place in the Bible does echidna refer to a reptile.

In verse 4 we read that the barbarians saw the “venomous beast” hang from his hand. That looks pretty clear in the KJV, but the word venomous does not actually occur in verse 4 but is a translators addition. That is why it is in italics. The Greek word translated “the venomous beast” is the word θηρίον or therion. This word occurs 46 times in scripture and is translated beast or wild beast every other time. This is the same word translated “beast” in verse 5. Most times this word refers to mammals.

So when we look at the Greek there is no need to believe that this was in fact a venomous snake. The fact that the people with Paul thought the snake was venomous and expected him to die is clear, but the bible does NOT say that the snake was poisonous. At least not until 1611 it didn’t.

If you want to believe it was a poisonous snake you can, the Bible does not clearly say it was not, but a belief that it was a poisonous snake is not required if you believe the Bible literally.

Crucified in Christ
01-27-2011, 07:34 PM
Do we have to accept the fact that the snake was poisonous? Does the Bible say that it was? KJVO folks may not like this but here are the facts.

Acts 28:3-8
[3] And when Paul had gathered a bundle of sticks, and laid them on the fire, there came a viper out of the heat, and fastened on his hand.
[4] And when the barbarians saw the venomous beast hang on his hand, they said among themselves, No doubt this man is a murderer, whom, though he hath escaped the sea, yet vengeance suffereth not to live.
[5] And he shook off the beast into the fire, and felt no harm.
[6] Howbeit they looked when he should have swollen, or fallen down dead suddenly: but after they had looked a great while, and saw no harm come to him, they changed their minds, and said that he was a god.

There are two places here where we are told it was a poisonous snake. In verse 3 the snake is called a viper and vipers are poisonous. The Greek word here is ἔχιδνα or echidna. The KJV translates it “viper” every time it is used, but it only refers to a snake in this verse. Every other time the Bible uses this word it is part of the phrase “generation of vipers” and refers to wicked men. No other place in the Bible does echidna refer to a reptile.

In verse 4 we read that the barbarians saw the “venomous beast” hang from his hand. That looks pretty clear in the KJV, but the word venomous does not actually occur in verse 4 but is a translators addition. That is why it is in italics. The Greek word translated “the venomous beast” is the word θηρίον or therion. This word occurs 46 times in scripture and is translated beast or wild beast every other time. This is the same word translated “beast” in verse 5. Most times this word refers to mammals.

So when we look at the Greek there is no need to believe that this was in fact a venomous snake. The fact that the people with Paul thought the snake was venomous and expected him to die is clear, but the bible does NOT say that the snake was poisonous. At least not until 1611 it didn’t.

If you want to believe it was a poisonous snake you can, the Bible does not clearly say it was not, but a belief that it was a poisonous snake is not required if you believe the Bible literally.

I see your points, but I would wonder why the Holy Spirit, through Luke, would include this account if it simply recalled a non-poisonous snake biting Paul with the result that Paul didn't die. Of course, under these circumstances, Paul didn't die. This would also make us speculate as to why the residents of Malta would have been so sure that it was a poisonous viper if it was not a poisonous snake. Their response, that Paul must have been given a death sentence by God, only makes sense if the people clearly saw the snake and recognized it as a poisonous type. Given these points, I think that it is much more logical to believe that there was a poisonous snake on the Island at that time (something that we have reports of elsewhere) and that it was well known for its deadly effect.

North Carolina Tentmaker
01-27-2011, 07:50 PM
That is of course certainly possible CiC. And there are many accounts of people being bitten by poisonous snakes and either not getting an injection of venom or not having a reaction to it. God certainly could have done it that way. But if we judge by the misinformation on snakes today, many people think they are all poisonous today. I had a call once from a woman who had an “Egyptian Adder” in her holly bush in Tennessee. Of course it turned out to be a rat snake.

If you want to believe Paul was bitten by a common snake and God used that to give Paul an opportunity to witness to the natives of the Island, then that is compatible with scripture. If you want to believe Paul was bitten by a poisonous snake and God spared his life for the same purpose that is compatible as well. Either option is miraculous.

The fact that poisonous snakes may not live on Malta today or did not in Paul’s time is irrelevant to the story or the authority and accuracy of scripture. That is my point anyway.

luke1616
01-27-2011, 09:49 PM
Makes me wonder why we question the bible whether the snake was really poisonous or not. The point is as believers the Holy Spirit can so fill us that a viper cannot effect us. The power of God is awesome!

Luke2427
01-27-2011, 10:01 PM
Makes me wonder why we question the bible whether the snake was really poisonous or not. The point is as believers the Holy Spirit can so fill us that a viper cannot effect us. The power of God is awesome!

He can and he has. Paul's survival here is a fulfillment of one of your favorite passages of Scripture, Mark 16, imo.

That it was going to come to pass as Christ declared in Mark 16 is proven by Paul's survival in Meleta.

But to purport that these things are God's normative way of moving his church forward in every age is quite adolescent, imo.

Iconoclast
01-27-2011, 11:25 PM
He can and he has. Paul's survival here is a fulfillment of one of your favorite passages of Scripture, Mark 16, imo.

That it was going to come to pass as Christ declared in Mark 16 is proven by Paul's survival in Meleta.

But to purport that these things are God's normative way of moving his church forward in every age is quite adolescent, imo.

Signs of an apostle were used by God as foundational for the church.It is not happening today.I believe the scriptural account...not some girl from malta.

Crucified in Christ
01-28-2011, 01:14 AM
That is of course certainly possible CiC. And there are many accounts of people being bitten by poisonous snakes and either not getting an injection of venom or not having a reaction to it. God certainly could have done it that way. But if we judge by the misinformation on snakes today, many people think they are all poisonous today. I had a call once from a woman who had an “Egyptian Adder” in her holly bush in Tennessee. Of course it turned out to be a rat snake.

If you want to believe Paul was bitten by a common snake and God used that to give Paul an opportunity to witness to the natives of the Island, then that is compatible with scripture. If you want to believe Paul was bitten by a poisonous snake and God spared his life for the same purpose that is compatible as well. Either option is miraculous.

The fact that poisonous snakes may not live on Malta today or did not in Paul’s time is irrelevant to the story or the authority and accuracy of scripture. That is my point anyway.

Point taken...God's grace in bringing the gospel to new people is an amazing thing!

Crabtownboy
01-28-2011, 03:35 AM
I have checked a bunch of versions of the Bible. Depending on the version various words are used concerning the snake:

.Viper
.Adder ............. the adder is a member of the viper family.
.bad snake
.poisonous snake
.snake

Just a bit more information.

rbell
01-28-2011, 03:48 AM
Just because there aren't poisonous snakes now doesn't mean they didn't exist then.



Right.

Also, remember, we're talking about a shipwreck, a storm, and a brushpile.

The snake could've been a "stowaway" on this ship, or another (after all, this was a crossroads.

This could've been an aquatic snake.

One other likely scenario: Malta certainly has lawyers. I've known many who bit, and were quite poisonous. That Paul survived the bite of a lawyer would be a miracle indeed... :D :D

David Lamb
01-28-2011, 03:55 AM
That is one possibility. It seems a bit strange to me that the poisonous would have all disappeared while non-poisonous ones are still there.

I think there are other explanations that are possible.

Not arguing, just discussing.

The UK, much larger than Malta, has just one species of poisonous snake - the adder. So here, it would only need that one species to become extinct for there to be no poisonous snakes.

I've no idea how many varieties of poisonous snake there were on Malta in Paul's day - perhaps just one, in which case, your scenario of "all the poisonous disappearing" would not be so far-fetched.

Crabtownboy
01-28-2011, 04:32 AM
The UK, much larger than Malta, has just one species of poisonous snake - the adder. So here, it would only need that one species to become extinct for there to be no poisonous snakes.

I've no idea how many varieties of poisonous snake there were on Malta in Paul's day - perhaps just one, in which case, your scenario of "all the poisonous disappearing" would not be so far-fetched.

I agree, that is one possibility.

Other possibilities ....

1-The snake was being transported in the ship and escaped ... thus poisonous but not native to Malta.

2-The passengers with Paul were not from Malta and thought the snake was poisonous. The Leopard Snake could easily be mistaken for a poisonous one by someone not from Malta.

3-People then thought all snakes were poisonous ... not very likely, but possible.

4-The snake was a stow-away on the ship and escaped on Malta.

To me the bottom line was that God used the incident for his glory and for Paul's credibility with the people he was with.

North Carolina Tentmaker
01-28-2011, 08:47 AM
To me the bottom line was that God used the incident for his glory and for Paul's credibility with the people he was with.
Well said. Not to beat a dead horse, or snake, but let me add a couple things Ctown.

First, reading different versions can help our understanding, but if you really want to know what the Holy Spirit inspired I believe you should check the Greek that Luke wrote. The Greek does not indicate that this has to be a poisonous snake, it could be, but does not have to be.

Second, and this is more of a question. The “Barbarians” who expected Paul to die after he was bit, were they survivors of the shipwreck or natives of Melita? I always thought they were natives to the island who built the fire and helped rescue the shipwreck survivors. If they were natives to the island that would seem to indicate they should have been familiar with the types of snakes present.

Did everyone have to believe the snake was poisonous, or only some of them? People hate snakes and I don’t think that is a new development.

HankD
01-28-2011, 09:02 AM
Definition of Extinction: Here today, gone tomorrow.

HankD

Crabtownboy
01-28-2011, 09:22 AM
Well said. Not to beat a dead horse, or snake, but let me add a couple things Ctown.

First, reading different versions can help our understanding, but if you really want to know what the Holy Spirit inspired I believe you should check the Greek that Luke wrote. The Greek does not indicate that this has to be a poisonous snake, it could be, but does not have to be.

Second, and this is more of a question. The “Barbarians” who expected Paul to die after he was bit, were they survivors of the shipwreck or natives of Melita? I always thought they were natives to the island who built the fire and helped rescue the shipwreck survivors. If they were natives to the island that would seem to indicate they should have been familiar with the types of snakes present.

Did everyone have to believe the snake was poisonous, or only some of them? People hate snakes and I don’t think that is a new development.

I agree with you on reading in Greek. My problem is my knowledge of Greek is zero, 0, even 0.00. I know this is to my determent.

You are right about people and snakes. I know some folk who panic when they hear the word. I don't mind snakes, the type that crawl, as long as I can see them. It is the ones I can't see that are a concern to me.

The two-legged snake is a topic for another thread. :laugh:

pinoybaptist
01-28-2011, 10:40 AM
I didn't know we had electric flying lizards in the jungles of Samar until I actually saw two kids, 8 and 10, dead, and the lizard dead beside them back in the early 70's.
It lit on the younger, and the elder tried to brush it off her.
I was hunting for deer and boar deep into the forests when I met a few villagers rushing to the spot.
I went with them and saw the bodies, and the lizard.
They said the lizard "flies" (I'd think they meant floated down from tree limbs), attaches itself to you, and expends all its electric charge.
They're very rare, though.
Now, your PH D student may have been born and raised in Malta, but perhaps she's not the outdoor type ?

blackbird
01-29-2011, 12:47 PM
I didn't know we had electric flying lizards in the jungles of Samar until I actually saw two kids, 8 and 10, dead, and the lizard dead beside them back in the early 70's.
It lit on the younger, and the elder tried to brush it off her.
I was hunting for deer and boar deep into the forests when I met a few villagers rushing to the spot.
I went with them and saw the bodies, and the lizard.
They said the lizard "flies" (I'd think they meant floated down from tree limbs), attaches itself to you, and expends all its electric charge.
They're very rare, though.
Now, your PH D student may have been born and raised in Malta, but perhaps she's not the outdoor type ?


Soooooooooooooooo----what you're trying to say, Pinoy----is----there's more electricity in a lizard than there is venom in a Rattlesnake????!!!:saint::saint:

I was bit by a Copperhead(lovely experience---I believe everybody ought to try it!!)--------required a hospital stay, etc.

When Paul was biten---those natives knew he only had so much time to live and that he was fixin' to "check out" of this world!!!

pinoybaptist
01-29-2011, 02:34 PM
Soooooooooooooooo----what you're trying to say, Pinoy----is----there's more electricity in a lizard than there is venom in a Rattlesnake????!!!:saint::saint:

I was bit by a Copperhead(lovely experience---I believe everybody ought to try it!!)--------required a hospital stay, etc.

When Paul was biten---those natives knew he only had so much time to live and that he was fixin' to "check out" of this world!!!

Well, what I'm trying to say in so many words is maybe the PH D stude may have been a "sheltered" individual and wasn't much into outdoors.

I was bit by a Philippine cobra back in the early '80's while gathering firewood. Not a very pleasant experience.

kyredneck
01-29-2011, 03:15 PM
....I stepped on a yellowjacket nest while digging yellowroot in the woods....not a very pleasant experience... :)

North Carolina Tentmaker
01-29-2011, 03:54 PM
Once while swimming off the great barrier reef I was swallowed alive by a great white shark. Lucky for me I was able to grab a tooth as I passed through his mouth and used it to saw out of his belly. After I broke though his hide we were able to sail out of there. Me and the three fisherman who had been swallowed earlier that day along with their boat.

Oh wait, were we comparing real events? :tongue3:

Amy.G
01-29-2011, 03:57 PM
My 15lb dog was bitten by a huuuuge copperhead last year right outside my front door and almost died. I haven't gotten over it yet.
The snake ended up chopped to bits by a shovel. I hate snakes.

Amy.G
01-29-2011, 03:57 PM
Once while swimming off the great barrier reef I was swallowed alive by a great white shark. Lucky for me I was able to grab a tooth as I passed through his mouth and used it to saw out of his belly. After I broke though his hide we were able to sail out of there. Me and the three fisherman who had been swallowed earlier that day along with their boat.

Oh wait, were we comparing real events? :tongue3:

That wasn't real? :tongue3:

kyredneck
01-29-2011, 10:39 PM
My 15lb dog was bitten by a huuuuge copperhead last year right outside my front door and almost died. I haven't gotten over it yet.
The snake ended up chopped to bits by a shovel. I hate snakes.

My two 'boys' are Papillon brothers. They're spoiled rotten inside lap dogs that are a barrel of fun, but, we live in a remote area with coyotes around everywhere, and that's their main threat when they go out to 'pee pee'. Fortunately, we also have an Anatolian Shepherd, Belgian Shepherd, and Spitz [the girls] outside to guard over and oversee this neccessary function.

The 'boys' are 7 lbs and 8 lbs.. A bite from a huge copperhead (which we do have here) like you describe would most likely be the demise for either of them.

Amy.G
01-29-2011, 11:10 PM
My two 'boys' are Papillon brothers. They're spoiled rotten inside lap dogs that are a barrel of fun, but, we live in a remote area with coyotes around everywhere, and that's their main threat when they go out to 'pee pee'. Fortunately, we also have an Anatolian Shepherd, Belgian Shepherd, and Spitz [the girls] outside to guard over and oversee this neccessary function.

The 'boys' are 7 lbs and 8 lbs.. A bite from a huge copperhead (which we do have here) like you describe would most likely be the demise for either of them.
I have thought of getting a Papillon someday but I'm also afraid of coyotes and hawks. Do you take them out on a leash? I have a fenced yard but that won't stop a hawk.
Yes, the snake that bit my dog (miniature poodle, 15lbs.) would have killed your little ones. The vet said it was the biggest copperhead she'd ever seen. We took the "parts" in a sack to the vet with us. It bit him on the hind foot and caused his body to swell all the way up to his front legs. He went completely unconscious and lost all body function about 10 minutes after the attack.
Sorry to babble on about it, but like I said, I'm not over it yet because I nearly lost my buddy. Although he's gotten over it just fine except for a permanent loss of hair on the inside of his back leg. Horrible experience for a dog lover!

kyredneck
01-29-2011, 11:44 PM
I have thought of getting a Papillon someday but I'm also afraid of coyotes and hawks. Do you take them out on a leash? I have a fenced yard but that won't stop a hawk.
Yes, the snake that bit my dog (miniature poodle, 15lbs.) would have killed your little ones. The vet said it was the biggest copperhead she'd ever seen. We took the "parts" in a sack to the vet with us. It bit him on the hind foot and caused his body to swell all the way up to his front legs. He went completely unconscious and lost all body function about 10 minutes after the attack.
Sorry to babble on about it, but like I said, I'm not over it yet because I nearly lost my buddy. Although he's gotten over it just fine except for a permanent loss of hair on the inside of his back leg. Horrible experience for a dog lover!

Well, yes, it was a horrible experience. You'll never forget it. My Dad lost a full grown collie to a copperhead bite decades ago while out digging mayapple root (bite was in the throat), he's never forgotten it.

No leashes, just open the door, day or night, and say, GO PEE PEE! We always say it loud as to arouse the attention of the outside dogs so they'll know the little ones are out.

Heheh, you can't just own one Papillon Amy. You gotta have at least two. They're a blast (the way they play together is sure entertainment). And intelligent, easily house trained, require little supervision, friendly to everyone, infinitely curious (which makes them very comical at times), not big eaters (or beggars) at all, love to go or content to stay, small and unobtrusive, and just overall lovable. THEY DO SHED THOUGH. Frequent combing does remedy this problem.

I've never thought about hawks. I have a Cooper's Hawk that routinely preys on the birds that are at our feeders in the wintertime, but they're not big enough to take one of the Papillons. But there are also other hawks of all kinds here too. Oh well, there's hazards everywhere I guess. :)

kyredneck
01-30-2011, 07:53 PM
.... My Dad lost a full grown collie to a copperhead bite decades ago while out digging mayapple root (bite was in the throat), he's never forgotten it...

Found out more particulars; dog was a shepherd and found/fought the snake probably preventing Dad from getting bit. It took the dog several months to die from the bite; she would get better and then worse, get better, get worse. A huge lump formed in her throat from the bite.

BobinKy
01-30-2011, 10:33 PM
I was talking at lunch with one of the Ph.D. students here. She was born on Malta. I asked, "What kind of snake bite Paul? The people with him were amazed his arm did not even sell. They expected him to die."

She replied, "There are no poisonous snakes on Malta."



Today, venomous (poisonous) snakes of Europe (http://iberianature.com/wildworld/tag/poisonous-snakes-of-europe/) are found at the following locations.

Silicy (island 60 miles north of Malta; also found in Italy and Southeast Europa)
Vipera aspis - Asp viper (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NcE4upgpscI&feature=related)

http://t2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQnR5o5hfbc6FdVv8Pz-x6OHbqiei4zQTnOwZWnLod7MwzoqC-5



Limited to the Greek islands of Milos, Kimolos, Polyaigos, and Sifnos (500 miles east of Malta)
Macrovipera schweizeri - Milos viper (http://www.euroherp.com/species/Macrovipera_schweizeri/)

http://t2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcT5I5HS3kEWpDSiyXZzvqO2w8t51xJwl lQg3oX03gVBkKHMqjJeIg




Italy (southern tip of Italy is 200 miles north of Malta)
Vipera ammodytes - Nose-horned viper, Long nosed viper (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vdcQx7S4r9Q)
Vipera ursinii - Ursini’s Viper (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8JwO1BKy2KY)

http://t3.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcR3BfiHvx7AqfEoQ164twoeJ3LzbFR8F BMlgLal5k-Ca09DUfJ9



Northeast Africa (200 miles west of Malta)
Echis pyramidum - Northeast African carpet viper, Egyptian saw-scaled viper (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Echis_pyramidum)

http://t0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSKqwXVXL5yTqnCAEBQD_XmWGVmf7Rru-eSBGxkD5yxCLMDD7o3

Swelling received from a bite to the hand from the Echis pyramidum.


. . .

I think there were poisonous snakes at the time Paul landed on Malta. The snakes may have been brought there for a time from another location in the vicinity (such as the Vipera aspis - Asp viper of Silicy and southern Italy); or the snake could have been indigenous to Malta and later became extinct (the Macrovipera schweizeri - Milos viper is found today on only four Greek islands).

...Bob