Man Takes Selfie With Rattlesnake, Now Faces Losing His Arm

Alex Gomez, a 36-year old man from Lake Elsinore, California, risks losing his arm after attempting to take a selfie with a rattlesnake. According to CBS Local, Gomez was bitten by the rattlesnake on Monday after he attempted to pick it up to take a selfie. Having spotted the four-foot rattler in a field by his family ranch on Cielito Drive, Gomez made the potentially deadly mistake of underestimating the snake’s threat to his life.

The man is currently hospitalized and faces a losing battle to save one of his hands from the incident, Metro reports. Gomez’s mother, Deborah, bashed her son for playing the fool, pointing to the fact that the selfie attempt could have led to even more disastrous consequences.

“I’m shocked that he would have that thing around his neck. It could’ve bit his neck, and that would have been it. That’s just being a fool… His skin is already rotting away.”

Upon being bitten by the rattlesnake, Gomez — who is a father of three — began experiencing excruciating pain in one of his arms, which also began to swell up to an astonishing degree. Alex’s nephew, who was present at the time Gomez attempted to take the selfie, said the rattlesnake gave plenty of warnings.

“It was really thin and had ten rattles on it, it was rattling. It was pretty mad.”

However, Gomez did not pay much heed to the warnings, and instead proceeded to pick the rattlesnake up and put it around his neck, which he managed to do. At this point, the reptile bit him, and a concerned Ronnie ran to call on neighbors, who immediately rang 911.

In the aftermath of the selfie incident, Alex’s mother was flooded by calls from media outlets, with reporters curious to know how the whole incident transpired. Surprisingly, she did not shy away from sharing her son’s story with the news channels, hoping it would help her teach Alex a lesson.

“I told him the news people had been calling, and he said ‘Mom, you better not,’ and I said ‘I’m going to.’ I’m going to teach him a real good lesson when he gets home. No mercy for him.”

Coincidentally, this is not the first time a man has had to face grave repercussions for attempting to take a rattlesnake selfie. According to the Huffington Post, Todd Fassler had to pay almost $153,000 in hospital bills this past July after being bitten by a rattlesnake in a similar selfie attempt.


Apparently, one of the common points of the two incidents is also the amount of venom injected by the snake on both occasions. The rattlesnake controls the amount of venom that goes in — the angrier it is, the more venom the rattlesnake is likely to inject. Going by Ronnie’s account of the incident, then, it is probable that the rattlesnake injected a heavy dose of venom into Gomez’s arm, which might have to be removed in order to prevent the venom from spreading to other parts of his body. In Todd’s case, the venom in his body was so high that the hospital authorities had to spend almost two hospitals’ worth of anti-venom medicines to save his life.

One thing is certain at the end of it all: rattlesnake selfies should soon be driven out of vogue.

[Photo: Wikimedia Commons]