FIRST ON 3: Copperhead snake bites Ooltewah girl - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

FIRST ON 3: Copperhead snake bites Ooltewah girl

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HAMILTON COUNTY, TN (WRCB) - A young girl is recovering in the hospital after being bitten by a copperhead snake. It happened at her Ooltewah home Saturday evening, as Channel 3 first reported this weekend.

Copperhead snake bites are poisonous and require immediate medical attention. The family of the little girl tells us she is going to be ok but want others to learn from their experience.

They say with all the warm weather they have noticed more snakes where they live, and with summer just around the corner they want everyone to be on the lookout.

Ten-year-old Allyson Reed stepped outside the front of her house Saturday night to let her dog out and immediately ran back inside to let her mom and step-dad know something bit her on the foot, twice.

"She let us know she had stepped on something and she thought it bit her. So we looked and we found fang marks," says her mom, Melanie Royse.

Her step-dad found a copperhead snake, chopping its head off with a sharpened metal broom handle.

"Killed it, took it to the hospital. Got her in there as quick as we could," says Christian Royse.

"It was a baby copperhead," says Allyson.

Allyson's step-dad provided us a cope of a cell phone interview as she recovers in the hospital.

When asked how she is feeling, she says, "I feel ok. It's just my leg hurts a little."

"She's in pain. I didn't really know how painful snake venom was, but apparently it's extremely painful," says Christian.

The venom was powerful enough to cause her foot to swell quite a bit within the first 12 hours.

"We expected anti venom and all kinds of big fancy things, but what they're actually doing is lots of fluids, pain meds to keep the pain under control and they're just monitoring her," says Melanie.

Melanie says out of instinct, on the way to the hospital, she put a bag of ice on the wound.

She later found out, that is not a good idea.

"Instead of letting her body process it and start to filter it out, I was actually keeping it in one spot. So it was actually going to cause more harm than good."

In the meantime, Allyson is upset because she missed out on a night of fun and wrestling.

"I was going to go to WW-E!" she says.

Besides not using ice, The American Academy of Family Physicians says other older treatment methods, like applying a tourniquet or trying to suck the venom out are not a good idea either. Those methods can be harmful to the victim.

The best thing to do is have the bite victim lie as still as possible and rush them to the nearest hospital.

It also helps if you can safely kill the snake and bring it with you, like this family did.

As for Allyson, she is expected to be released from the hospital this Tuesday or Wednesday.

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