A Colorado youngster is making a recovery after a dangerous encounter with a rattlesnake.
Ethan Vogel, 11, was bitten by the venomous reptile after falling on a bike ride through North Table Mountain in the city of Golden, according to the Denver Gazette.
Ethan’s dad, Zach Vogel, said the snake that bit his son on June 6 was nearly three feet long.
Father and son realized the encounter had left Ethan with the telltale twin red marks of a snake bite on his upper right chest.
The Vogels shared their story of the snake bite with KUSA-TV after Ethan was cleared to leave the hospital.
Both father and son quickly realized the seriousness of the situation.
“I was just scared, really,” Ethan said of the bite. “I didn’t want to go. I didn’t want to kick the bucket.”
Vogel described the scenario as one any father would dread.
“Laying in my arms and saying he’s not ready to die … as a dad, it’s the last thing you want to hear,” he said.
WARNING: The following video contains graphic imagery that some viewers may find disturbing.
In a written account of events he provided to the Gazette, Vogel indicated the symptoms of the rattlesnake bite set in quickly.
“The snake’s venom was already doing its work and lips went numb, white spots on cheeks, pain setting in, hard time breathing, heart rate increasing,” he said.
“Ethan’s body began purging bile and face [was] completely numb. Extending to fingers and toes.”
The Fairmount Fire Protection District’s rescue squad arrived a short distance away from the trail within 20 minutes of an emergency call.
Vogel described the scene as his son was treated at Anschutz Children’s Hospital.
“Ethan’s mother, Heather, met them at the hospital and helped keep the fatigued 11-year-old ‘focused and stay conscious,’ Vogel wrote,” the Gazette reported.
“Ethan’s heart rate reached 165 beats per minute and his blood pressure had ‘tanked.’”
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“Ten vials of antivenin were given the boy over 90 minutes and he was transferred to intensive care unit at Anschutz Children’s Hospital in Aurora at 8:45 p.m.,” the Gazette reported. “His vital signs ‘looked much better,’ Vogel wrote, and the boy slept through the night.
“On Wednesday morning, Ethan was given six more doses of antivenin, his father wrote, with two more rounds of antivenin given Wednesday evening and early Thursday morning.”
The 11-year-old was discharged from the hospital days after the bite, with a prognosis of a full recovery within 14 to 20 days.
A friend of the Vogel family has started a GoFundMe fundraiser for Ethan’s health care expenses, with members of the community contributing more than $14,400 toward a goal of $15,000 as of Wednesday morning.
Rattlesnake bites cause between 10 and 15 deaths in the U.S. every year, according to the Food and Drug Administration.