Illegal Seizure-Sensing Snake


I've heard of seizure-sensing dogs, but never a seizure-sensing snake!  This is a pretty amazing--and odd--tale of an animal helping a human.  Unfortunately, it's also technically illegal.

Snake Seizure PeoplePets Mike KaneRedrock is a red-tailed boa constrictor, a popular species in the pet trade.  His human companion Daniel Green suffers from seizures and considers Redrock a service animal similar to a seeing eye dog for a person who is blind.

Greene claims that Redrock can sense a seizure coming on moments before it hits, giving him time to take the medication he needs to control the seizure.

He told, "Redrock is a service animal for me.  He sees increases in my blood pressure, or detects changes in my body three minutes before I have a seizure. He alerted me about the three seizures I have had this month."

Redrock squeezes Greene's neck when he senses an imminent seizure and then crawls to saftey inside his carrier. 

Despite this, the federal government does not recognize snakes on the list of approved service animal species, in part because they are considered potentially alarming to other members of the public. 

What do you think about this?  Should snakes be allowed to be service animals?

Photo of Daniel Greene and Redrock the boa constrictor by Mike Kane/Zuma via


David Mizejewski is a naturalist with the National Wildlife Federation. His goal is to inspire others to appreciate the wonders of nature. Meet David >







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