Snake Avoidance Course 
​​You may be wondering what exactly a Snake Avoidance Course is and what is going to happen to my dog.
We use live Diamondback Rattlesnakes and rattlers have the capabilities of replacing extracted fangs very quickly. Our Snake Handler uses a clipping method to keep the old fang partially in place and the venom is milked in the process. The snakes mouth is taped for further safety. There is little or no chance of your dog being injected with venom.
The clinic uses electronic stimulating dog collars for the negative response in teaching the dog that their discomfort comes from the snake. The electronic collar has been proven as a very safe and effective method for this training.
There will be two rattlesnakes on the course. The first snake has its rattles taped to simulate a dormant Snake or a Cottonmouth. Rattlesnakes do not necessarily rattle before they strike. The dog is brought in the vicinity of the snake using long check cords. The best response is to get the dog to use its natural senses to SMELL THE SNAKE & SEE THE SNAKE! When the handler of the collar sees that this has occurred stimulation will be given from the e-collar. Some dogs will need to see it again, but most will learn quickly and any curiosity will result as a negative experience.
The second snake is a rattlesnake with the rattles buzzing. The plan is to have the dog use it’s natural senses and HEAR THE SNAKE, SEE THE SNAKE & SMELL THE SNAKE. If the dog responds by leaving the vicinity, no stimulation will be given, but if the dog is still curious he will receive more stimulation to imprint that snake encounters as really bad experiences and to be avoided. The dogs associate the sight, sound and smell of the snake as a very bad experience.
Next is the loyalty check is to have the owner call the dog to him while the rattlesnake is between the dog and the owner. A wide berth around the snake is the final test that the dog knows WHERE THE SNAKE IS…. WHAT THE SNAKE SOUND LIKE…& WHAT THE SNAKE SMELLS LIKE.
Dogs are curious animals and do not have any natural fear of snakes. They usually are attracted to them for some reason. Our course introduces dogs to snakes as a negative experience using shock collars so they blame the snake for the pain. This is an association training and takes about 5 minutes.

Frequently Asked Questions:​

Do I need a reservation?

Your application and payment are your reservation. We will start training those preregistered at 8:00 am on a first come first served basis. The training only takes about 5 minutes and you DO NOT need to be there at the start.
Is there room for my dog?
There is plenty of room for your dogs. We guided over 400 dogs through the course in a day in past years and still had time for more.

Is my puppy old enough for this course?
This treatment is not effective for puppies younger than 6 months old and not recommended for immature puppies as it is very stressful.
Do I need to be a member of CGDA to put my dog through this course?
Membership is not required. This program is for all dog breeds, especially those who live and play in snake country. If you do have a pointing dog you may be interested in our club and it's benefits. Please inquire at the check in desk or call an officer listed on the home page.
Does my dog need to take this course again?
A second treatment is important as a refresher course and allows you to judge whether your dog has learned from the first time or may need more. Dogs are like people in this respect, you never know.
​We recommend this course once a year.
Will other dates be available?

Unfortunately we are only able to provide this service once a year. We are planning on June of 2022.

Can I pay with my credit card?

You can pre-register with your credit card, see above or mail in advance, enabling you to streamline the process and go into the fast line at the event.  Credit cards will also be accepted at the training.

Snake Avoidance Course Registration

Snake Avoidance Course

We are always updating our email list and if you and / or any of your friends want to be added send us your/their name and email address to: snakeavoidance@coloradogundog.org  

The next CGDA Snake Avoidance Course will be in June of 2022.  

We are probably the only organization in Colorado that legally trains with live snakes.  

We use diamondback rattlesnakes brought from Texas by Robert Hemmenway. 


Gary Kinzie     303-772-5337
Fred Prior       303-450-2547


  Check out the Frequently Asked Questions below


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snakeavoidance@coloradogundog.org