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Snake Bit!

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OnStar helps a hunter find assistance after his dogs are bitten by a rattlesnake.

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OnStar helps a hunter find assistance after his dogs are bitten by a rattlesnake.

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OnStar helps a hunter find assistance after his dogs are bitten by a rattlesnake

Originally published in 2012

Bill Kidd and his dogs have been making the annual 1,200-mile drive from Shepherdsville, Kentucky, to Chamberlain, South Dakota, “the capital of pheasant hunting,” for more than two decades. But last fall’s trip nearly turned into a disaster when two of Bill’s English setters — Bud and Wise — were bitten by a rattlesnake while he and a friend were on a hunt.

“The dogs must have found the snake, and being curious animals they had to stick their noses where they didn’t belong,” Bill says. “I heard one of the dogs yelp, so I went to see what they had uncovered.”

When he reached the dogs he realized they had been bitten by a snake. “We went straight back to our truck to check the dogs out and found their necks were already starting to swell, which was cutting their air flow off. I knew we needed to get them help and fast,” Bill says.

Bill was worried he’d lose both dogs. “I was hunting a long way from the nearest town, and I had no idea where the closest vet was,” he says. “It was getting close to evening and I knew my dogs didn’t have much time.”

Bill pushed the blue OnStar button*1a in his GMC truck and spoke to an Advisor. “They not only gave me directions to the nearest vet — which was about 55 miles away — they also alerted the vet that I was coming,” he says. “She was kind enough to stay open and wait for us, and she had the antivenom ready. She saved both my dogs. If it wasn’t for OnStar, I know we would have lost them.”

According to Bill, Bud and Wise were their old selves by the next day, eager to get back out hunting. And he was one grateful man.

“Having the insurance of OnStar is well worth it. Because you never know when you’re going to need help.”