What to do when you see a rattlesnake or if you are bitten

RENO, NV (KOLO) -- As the weather improves, so do the chances that you will encounter a rattlesnake. But do you know what to do?

Most of the encounters so far this season in Northern Nevada have been in the Carson City area.

John Potash with Get Rattled says the snakes are coming out later this year because of the weather. He helps train dogs recognize and avoid rattlesnakes. Potash recommends people always have their dogs on a leash, but if they aren’t on one, get them rattlesnake-trained.

Potash says for people, it's best to leave the snakes alone when coming across them.

"If you happen to be walking and you hear one or don't see it, the advice is to stop where you are at and try to identify where the sound is coming from and go the other way” said Potash. “You don't need to run or scream like a lot of people do because that just puts you in more danger.”

Potash says there is one rattlesnake in the region that is dangerous and that is the Great Basin Rattlesnake.

If you are bitten, it is recommended you carry your cell phone and your car is nearby. Call 911, so the hospital has time to get ready and can gather the right supplies to treat you.

Potash says it is not recommended you run after a bite because it could help the venom spread faster. Also, it is not recommended you use a suction cup or cut and suck, because it will prolong the treatment and could cause more damage.

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