PHOENIX (FOX 10) - A hike in the Superstition Mountains with her dog turned out to be a nightmare for one Valley woman when her dog was attacked by a rattlesnake.
More hikers and their dogs seem to be going outdoors as we've had cooler weather than usual. But a simple hike almost turned deadly for Nellie, who now needs her eye removed because of a rattlesnake bite.
It's been seven months since Amanda Medell and her dog, Nellie, became a family. For these two, hiking is a hobby.
Medell was on a hike with Nellie and her roommate, Nicole Hardenbrook, at Wave Cave at the Superstition Mountains on Thursday. The dog stuck her face in a bush and next thing they saw was a snake in the trail and Nellie bleeding and yelping, according to the GoFundMe page set up by Amanda's roommate, Nicole Hardenbrook.
"About a mile through the hike, Nellie decided to sniff a bush [and] all of a sudden, she started yelping and bleeding," Medell said. "Looking at her, seeing she's in pain - it's swelling, it's heartbreaking."
"[The snake was] at literally my ankles," Hardenbrook said. "[I'm] pretty sure it brushed my legs and it's like, flopped over on its stomach - it was like a black-out moment."
The women rushed Nellie to an emergency vet in time to get her anti-venom, but her eye will have to be surgically removed when the swelling goes down.
Nellie is now recovering at home as her life changes from this point on. But Medell says hiking won't stop.
"I think I will go hiking with her just because she loves doing it," Medell said. "I know that she won't be scared to do it again. But I'm definitely [going to] be more cautious."
Nellie should be getting surgery in about five days, costing thousands of dollars. A GoFundMe has been set up to help cover Nellie's medical expenses.