Petsitter gives mouth-to-beak after snake strangles chicken

Not all heroes wear capes

By Camelia Juarez - News Intern

KERRVILLE, Texas - Kerrville petsitter Beth King never thought she would end up in this situation. King saved baby Natalie, an 8-week-old pet chick, from becoming snake dinner, then pumped two breaths of life into Natalie’s beak. 

Yes, Natalie’s beak.

Natalie is still alive today thanks to mouth-to-beak resuscitation. 

One night, while King was petsitting, she heard distressed cries coming from her client’s chicken coop. Inside the coop, King found a snake almost completely wrapped around a baby chick. 

“What I saw was mostly snake with a bit of feathers sticking out,” King said. 

King bravely picked up the snake-chick bundle and began pulling the four-foot Texas Rat snake off the chick. 

For the safety of the other pet chickens, King killed the snake when she saw it slithering back for a taste of the other chickens.

“I typically don't kill nonpoisonous snakes, but this was a confirmed chicken killer,” King said.

King looked at the limp chick and did something she has never done in her five years of petsitting. 

King put her mouth to the beak and pushed two little breaths. To King’s surprise, Natalie began making little clucks.  

The baby chick’s owners are grateful. 

“We are just so amazed and grateful that Beth was on-site to save the day. She's our hero,” said Bill Dayton, Natalie’s owner.
 

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