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Afraid Of Snakes
02-17-2013, 12:56 PM,
#1
4sweed Offline
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Afraid Of Snakes
Do you know of someone who is so afraid of snakes that they can not even stand a picture of a snake or a snakeskin belt or buckle?
I have a relative that is afraid and freaks out at pictures and handmade buckles or wallets. It is really strange to be scared of something that is not even real and though most of us do not have this problem it always makes me wonder what caused the fear in the frist place. Being chased by snakes as a child could maybe cause it. Anyone have any stories to tell or reasons behind the fears of snakes?
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02-17-2013, 01:32 PM,
#2
snake mon Offline
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
I also had a relative who was so afraid of snakes she wouldn't even come into our house because I had a few snakes in my room.She would just sit and read in the car and she never got over it.There are no snakes in Ct. that are very scarry except for Black snakes and they are so fast I had a hard time catching them,they were always going away not coming after me!!
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02-21-2013, 01:37 AM,
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SereneScales Offline
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
one of my aunts won't even come into my house because of my snakes. Woman used to be a cop, but is scared to death of some harmless boas and pythons? It's mind boggling to me!
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02-21-2013, 01:59 AM,
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4sweed Offline
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
We had come from Florida, to visit my parents in PA, and my husband had brought several snakeskin hatbands and wallets, and buckles that he had made from dead diamond-backed rattlesnakes. We were sitting at the diningroom table and my little brother wanted to see one of the snake skulls. It was handed over to him under the table so my one sister-in-law would not see it, and when he suddenly brought it out from under the table and thrust it toward her. She screamed at the top of her lungs and jumped up and ran from the house, crying and screaming the whole way down the street. My brother said she was in a panic for days after that. Needless to say none in the family were happy with my younger brother's antics and she never forgave him for it. She had told us as a young girl the neighborhood boys had chased after her with live garter snakes and she has been very afraid of snakes since that time.
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02-21-2013, 08:57 AM,
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AnnaU93 Offline
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
Well I am actually someone who fits in this category (haha). I am someone who is really afraid of little crawling creatures such as centipedes but snakes come very close to scaring me just as much. I just can't stand the sight of them and I don't generally think of them as a fashion acessory so therefore I never wear their print on my belt or bag or anything of that matter.
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02-26-2013, 01:54 PM,
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4sweed Offline
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
Anna, I always felt the same way that you do. I used to get spooked by the black racers that popped out of no where when my dad took us fishing. I would scream and run for the car.

All that changed when I moved to Florida and got married. My snakehunter husband taught me enough about snakes that when I would come back home for a visit I could pick up garder snakes without worrying about getting bit. Milksnakes I was a bit leary of and stayed away from the poisen ones.

My husband showed me the proper way to pick them up and also how to feed and care for them.

As for wearables, my husband made them from dead snakes he found along the roads and got from wildlife attractions.

I designed snakeskin earrings and we made batches of them. I even wrote articles that were published in magazines about the items he made. I didn't wear them because I don't wear earrings, but they sure were pretty.

So, now that I am back in Pa, I let the snakes be and am quite happy they don't come looking for me either. lol
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03-04-2013, 10:41 PM,
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Ram Offline
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
It is completely normal to be scared by a real snake when you see one. I am sure most people will panic if a snake is coming out of nowhere right in front of them. It is a normal behavior because most people can't tell if a snake is venomous or not.

I will probably jump if there is suddenly a snake near me, and most likely I won't even touch it even if it isn't venomous unless it is pet snake. I remember the first time I touched a snake was a tiny pet snake brought to school by a classmate. I thought it was cute and soft to touch. There is nothing to be afraid of since I knew it was harmless after multiple kids had touched it. Yeah, I held it for a minute in my hand. So soft. Tongue

On the other hand, it is nonsense to be scared of a picture of a snake, or even a snake in secured captivity. What is there to be scared of? They can't hurt you even if they want to. People who can't stand the picture of a snake might have some unusual issues.
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03-05-2013, 02:22 PM,
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SereneScales Offline
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
Okay, I'm gonna share my two cents here... Fear of snakes is not a natural instinctual fear. It's instilled in people... I've done educational shows for kids and more times than not, the younger ones are filled with joy and wonderment biting at the bit to get a chance to pet it, like they would if you showed them a puppy or a kitten. However...I'm not saying just tell them to run up on any snake and try to pet it, no. Though I'll say they should be taught to respect and be appreciative of such marvels of nature. And I'm sorry but to think any average person can just look at a snake and tell if it's venomous or not is a fallacy. It takes years of experience and research to be certain, and even then mistakes have been known to be made. These fears are instilled by those who don't know any better or by overly religious people who dismiss any and all scientific fact or any of reason or common sense for that matter!
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03-05-2013, 05:31 PM,
#9
Yatte Offline
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
My grandmother had this irrational fear of snakes, she could not even watch them on television. I am afraid of snakes as well, but only in proximity. I suspect my fear stems from an inadequate knowledge on snakes, and a fear of being bitten. You always hear this horror stories of snake bites, even though a large amount of them are not even poisonous.

I believe there are a bad stigma attached to snakes, like the case with sharks. The media sometimes tend to use and abuse these stigmas to their own betterment and the reduction of the species. In this case I am revering to movies, and not documentaries, that help us understand a species more. Lots of innocent animals are killed ar get hurt by the bad wrap the media gives them.
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03-12-2013, 12:55 PM,
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4sweed Offline
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
Snakes have had a bad stigma attached to them since the Garden Of Eden, in the Bible, with Adam and Eve. Snakes then were considered to be the bad news and that feeling is held by most women. I have known a few men who only talked about killing them, running over with car, instead of just tolerating the presense of snakes.
I was never to fond of them and even in learning more about them, I find them to be interesting creatures and beautiful to look at, but the fear stigma is still there.

I worry about being bit first thing, and second is handling them correctly. Keeping the poisenous ones apart from non-poisenous ones in my mind is a bit hard too. A copperhead and rattlesnake are easy to identify, but water moccasins are often harder to see and can be different colors, when shedding their skin. So I can be afraid of the real alive snake even now, but I do not fear the dead or tanned verisons.
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03-13-2013, 12:53 AM,
#11
SereneScales Offline
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
(03-12-2013, 12:55 PM)4sweed Wrote: Snakes have had a bad stigma attached to them since the Garden Of Eden, in the Bible, with Adam and Eve. Snakes then were considered to be the bad news and that feeling is held by most women. I have known a few men who only talked about killing them, running over with car, instead of just tolerating the presense of snakes.

Which proves my original point, fear is instilled, and its usually through Religious beliefs that people hold.
Genesis is a story, the writer chose the serpent for a specific reason, the devil did not seriously chose the form of a serpent nor did god create the world in only 7 days (though that's stepping into a different topic completely). Had the writer chosen a rat, or an ape, or a dog I am sure the same fear people have towards snakes would be turned to focus on this other creature.
I can tell you right now that there is an almost equal ratio of men to women in the herpetoculture. My fiance is the one who asked for all of the snakes and geckos and lizards we own/owned, she's been in love with reptiles from a young age and most, if not all, of her female friends share the same respect and even interest in reptiles. Plenty of women keep snakes and other reptiles and there are plenty of women who enjoy field herping and finding wild snakes and lizards in their natural environment.
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03-13-2013, 01:13 AM,
#12
Rube Offline
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
Personally I find snakes fascinating but I do know some people have an irrational fear of them. I accept that snake venom can be deadly, but the majority of snakes do not pose any threat.

I think it is a fear that originates in superstition and folklore, where snakes are bad omens or, as in the Garden of Eden, they represent evil. The serpent's forked tongue is also supposed to represent deception (as in "speaking with forked tongue").

There is also the myth that snakes are cold, slimy and nasty to touch, which I believe is entirely false. I have been lucky enough to see snakes in the wild, but so far I have not had the pleasure of handling one.
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07-22-2013, 06:28 AM,
#13
DragonFire Offline
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
A friend of mine is also freakishly afraid of snakes, or anything that would resemble one! She is even afraid of Northern Pike and Muskie, so you can imagine how bad she gets if she got one on her line while fishing.

Phobias, such as a fear of snakes called Ophidiophobia is not uncommon. It usually has to do with some kind of fear causing event when encountering a snake. But it can be easily overcome with some targeted therapy including desensitization. One can become fearful through general classical conditioning just out of innate inborn survival fear action in regards to the unknown. Such as running after someone with a snake for their first time seeing one.
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07-25-2013, 02:40 AM,
#14
Death2Housework Offline
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
I had a great arrangement with my neighbor about watching each other's dogs when we had to travel, that way no one has to go to a kennel and they are taken care of by someone who knows them. That arrangement ended the day I told her we took in a Red Tailed Boa from a friend of my son. His girlfriend had a baby, and who can blame a mother for not wanting a 7 foot snake in the house with her infant. Well, now I have a snake, no dog sitter but the baby is safe and that's all that matters. I never tell people about Alice. I know how snakes affect some people, so I just avoid it.
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07-25-2013, 06:38 PM,
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Fishbone Offline
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
(07-25-2013, 02:40 AM)Death2Housework Wrote: I had a great arrangement with my neighbor about watching each other's dogs when we had to travel, that way no one has to go to a kennel and they are taken care of by someone who knows them. That arrangement ended the day I told her we took in a Red Tailed Boa from a friend of my son. His girlfriend had a baby, and who can blame a mother for not wanting a 7 foot snake in the house with her infant. Well, now I have a snake, no dog sitter but the baby is safe and that's all that matters. I never tell people about Alice. I know how snakes affect some people, so I just avoid it.

I have avoided this thread for a variety of reasons, because I realize that a fear of snakes comes from a variety of things. BUT, Death2Housework, what does having a baby have to do with having a 7 foot Boa constrictor? Most boas of that size will never eat a rat over 400 grams, which is less than a pound. Yes, you can force a larger meal, but nothing near the size of a newborn infant (in most cases obviously). So, lets guess, you could force a 5 lb rabbit into a LARGE Boa, once again, what does that have to do with anything? As far as I know, there has NEVER been even an unconfirmed report of a Boa constrictor ssp killing a human, in the wild or captivity.

There were more than 20 humans killed by pit bull species just in the US last year, that's not adding all the crosses, other species and other countries. They actually kept the more dangerous animal.

I know there is next to no chance of whatever dog killing their baby, but that is still a far greater chance than the poor boa....
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07-26-2013, 02:19 AM,
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Death2Housework Offline
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
No, Dave, you're right. Alice probably wouldn't eat the baby, but that doesn't stop constriction or trying. I don't post every detail to the story because there isn't usually enough room, but I'll add one so you'll understand. I know the kid, and I doubt that he's the best candidate to own a pet like that. He's just the kind of kid that given the chance to make a decision, he'll take the bad one almost every time. He's so likeable, though! I'm not saying I'd get rid of a snake because I had a child or baby in the home, but I'm not going to judge a new mother for that decision, either. Snakes don't bother me in the least, and Alice is pretty sweet, actually.Heart
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08-04-2013, 07:09 AM,
#17
SereneScales Offline
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
(07-25-2013, 06:38 PM)Fishbone Wrote: I have avoided this thread for a variety of reasons, because I realize that a fear of snakes comes from a variety of things. BUT, Death2Housework, what does having a baby have to do with having a 7 foot Boa constrictor? Most boas of that size will never eat a rat over 400 grams, which is less than a pound. Yes, you can force a larger meal, but nothing near the size of a newborn infant (in most cases obviously). So, lets guess, you could force a 5 lb rabbit into a LARGE Boa, once again, what does that have to do with anything? As far as I know, there has NEVER been even an unconfirmed report of a Boa constrictor ssp killing a human, in the wild or captivity.

There were more than 20 humans killed by pit bull species just in the US last year, that's not adding all the crosses, other species and other countries. They actually kept the more dangerous animal.

I know there is next to no chance of whatever dog killing their baby, but that is still a far greater chance than the poor boa....



I agree with you here, it's this kind of fear bolstering that's destroying our hobby from the very foundation. There has been very few deaths caused by snakes, including that of venomous species per year. And even then these care cause by ignorant people who think "the only good snake is a dead snake" and attempts to kill said snake getting themselves bit. As a matter of fact it's never even been recorded of a snake actually eating a child. There was one case down in Florida several years ago where some braindead people was pet sitting for another brain dead person and left a starved snake in a room with a small girl with nothing over the crude enclosure but a blanket..... (Even people have been known to eat their own kind after being starved long enough, and this has been recorded several times) But the snake tragically killed the child and everyone pointed at the snakes as the badguys, along with us yahoos who keep them as a hobby. When the fault actually falls back onto the idiots who were attempting to keep something they were obviously not prepared or had the mental capacity for.
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08-09-2013, 09:27 AM,
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
(07-26-2013, 02:19 AM)Death2Housework Wrote: No, Dave, you're right. Alice probably wouldn't eat the baby, but that doesn't stop constriction or trying. I don't post every detail to the story because there isn't usually enough room, but I'll add one so you'll understand. I know the kid, and I doubt that he's the best candidate to own a pet like that. He's just the kind of kid that given the chance to make a decision, he'll take the bad one almost every time. He's so likeable, though! I'm not saying I'd get rid of a snake because I had a child or baby in the home, but I'm not going to judge a new mother for that decision, either. Snakes don't bother me in the least, and Alice is pretty sweet, actually.Heart

Actually, 99.9% of the time, that does stop constriction and trying. Boa constrictors could be viewed as animals that budget their energy. Constricting and killing any prey, especially large prey, requires quite a bit of energy. A large constrictor will not waste the energy to constrict something it cannot eat.

All this said, I am not condoning anyone leaving a baby, or any small child with a large constrictor. But I would say the same about a dog or cat honestly. If you have a larger animal, great care should be taken in housing and caring for it properly.

The only sidenote to all this, human bodies do seem to be confusing to large snakes. Overall length and girth, to a very large snake, we look edible. But most can't get over the shoulders. This is the case in the 12 or so human fatalities from large constrictors over the last 30 years. Most of the prey any of these animals would consume is more streamlined. So with the giants, this should always be kept in mind.

I should also say, that I am referring to the large constrictors here (reticulated pythons, Indian pythons (& ssp), both species of African rock pyrhons, and green anacondas). Not boa constrictors.
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12-03-2013, 11:18 AM,
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
I used to be afraid of snakes till my brother got a new California king snake (old one died) but when it was a baby I held it and hung out with it like it was my best friend...... Some people grow out of it..... Some don't
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12-06-2013, 01:57 AM,
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
This is me!!! I am so afraid of snakes!! I cannot understand why anyone would want them as a pet!!! When I travelled to Australia I was so terrified to go walking or the sunbathe in our back garden (for some reason I think snakes are everywhere in Australia). If a snake comes on the television I start getting the shivers and have to change the channel, I am currently watching the latest series of I'm a Celebrity, and I don't know how they do those bushtucker trials!! (If anyone hasn't seen this show 12 celebrities, have to live in the Australian outback for 3 weeks, and do trials to win food)
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03-16-2015, 09:45 PM,
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
i am/ was petrified of snakes until my partner decided he wanted a royal python and when we went to have a look at some i got it put on me and now couldnt be with out her. its all about mind over matter Smile
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03-23-2015, 09:28 AM,
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
I do not care for snakes; but I guess I am not what would be classified as terrified of snakes. I remember being fascinated when I was a child, watching them swim; but I didn't want to touch one.
My mother showed me how to hold a snake, and let it wrap around my arm, and I pretty well got over a lot of the dislike of snakes, and there were no venomous snakes where I grew up.
Even though I can actually touch a snake (non-poisonous) , I would never want to have one as a pet. I just prefer a dog or cat that actually likes to interact with me and enjoys being petted.

When I lived in Missouri, there were venomous snakes, and after I got bitten by a copperhead snake; I have just not ever wanted to be around one again, venomous or not.
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03-24-2015, 09:59 PM,
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
I am genuinely afraid of snakes, though fortunately not as badly as some. I can tolerate pictures of them, but I can't say I enjoy looking at snake pictures. I especially do not like watching snake videos because I do not like how they move. Snakes have always creeped me out. As a child, I was told about rattle snakes being poisonous and after that there was no way to truly convince me that all snakes weren't at least somewhat poisonous until I was nearly an adult. I used to flee from even a small garter snake. I am more educated about them now, but I still would probably jump and back away from a snake if I saw one again. I don't mind people having some small snakes as pets, but I do really have a problem with constrictors. I know of too many incidents where one of those was a family pet, then later harmed another pet or even a family member.
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04-03-2015, 04:01 AM,
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RE: Afraid Of Snakes
(03-05-2013, 02:22 PM)SereneScales Wrote: Okay, I'm gonna share my two cents here... Fear of snakes is not a natural instinctual fear. It's instilled in people... I've done educational shows for kids and more times than not, the younger ones are filled with joy and wonderment biting at the bit to get a chance to pet it, like they would if you showed them a puppy or a kitten. However...I'm not saying just tell them to run up on any snake and try to pet it, no. Though I'll say they should be taught to respect and be appreciative of such marvels of nature. And I'm sorry but to think any average person can just look at a snake and tell if it's venomous or not is a fallacy. It takes years of experience and research to be certain, and even then mistakes have been known to be made. These fears are instilled by those who don't know any better or by overly religious people who dismiss any and all scientific fact or any of reason or common sense for that matter!

I had never thought about public influence or why snakes has this reputation of instilling fear. I thank you for your insight. I need to step back and think about my unnatural fear of snakes. I really need to get a grip on my instinct to freeze and scream! I am getting ready to spend the summer in the country. Next time, I encounter a snake, I will tell myself not fall into that slippery slope of this fallacy that all snakes are poisonous. I commend you on your participation in educational programs, to stop this cycle of fear. Of course, as you say, the key is to be respectful and cautious.
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