Toddler dies after cobra bite in parents' bed

2016-02-23 11:03
Willie and Karin Esterhuizen and their daughter Karlien. (Supplied to Netwerk24)

Willie and Karin Esterhuizen and their daughter Karlien. (Supplied to Netwerk24)

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Cape Town - A 2-year-old girl has died after being bitten by a Cape cobra on her parents' bed.

Netwerk24 reported on Tuesday that Karlien Esterhuizen died while being rushed to a hospital in Beaufort West on Sunday.

Her father, Willie Esterhuizen, told Netwerk24 that he and his wife, Karin, and their only child took a nap in the main bedroom of their farmhouse on Sunday afternoon.

He got up to watch TV and an hour later he heard Karlien crying and his wife screaming.

A Cape cobra was on the bed and had bitten the toddler on her hand, between her thumb and index finger.

Esterhuizen said he killed the snake so that doctors could know what type of antivenin to administer to Karlien.

- Health24: Snake bites: what to do

They got into their bakkie and rushed to the nearest town, Beaufort West, which is about 65km from the farm.

However, Karlien's body started to go limp and she went blue around the mouth when they were about 20 to 30km away from Beaufort West.

He said her body was just too small to handle the amount of venom she had received.

Esterhuizen, a regional manager of Agri Western Cape in Beaufort West, said they will miss their only child a lot.

In January, it was reported that a loyal Bull Terrier put his life on the line when he attacked a cobra that had found its way into his owner’s garage in Cape Town.

The brave dog survived after being placed on a ventilator and spending three days at the vet. 

Also in January, a Jack Russell terrier died while protecting its pregnant owner and her 2-year-old daughter from a Cape cobra. The plucky dog killed the snake in their garden in Petrusburg, in the Free State.

- Health24: Dangerous snakes

Read more on:    cape town  |  animals

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