Any parent will tell you that one of the absolute greatest ways to stay sane during the summer months is by sending the kiddos OUTSIDE to play.
But a dad from Camden, Arkansas, has a desperate plea for parents to check their kids’ toys outside before sending them off to get that pent-up energy out of their systems.
Josh McClane was playing outside with his son, Judson, and his daughter, Jasmine, on a hot summer day. Judson had gone to play with his toy dump truck when all of a sudden, Josh heard him screaming at the top of his lungs.
“I figured it was an ant or maybe a wasp,” Josh recalls.
Instead, the three year old was suffering from a venomous and potentially deadly snake bite.
Hiding underneath his toy truck was a cottonmouth snake, also known as a water moccasin.
After being rushed to the emergency room, it took 16 viles of anti-venom to heal the little boy, and ultimately save his life.
The snake was resting under Judson’s dump truck—a warm space that had gone un-disturbed until it was time to play. The moccasin likely felt threatened, prompting him to bite the toddler on the leg.
Sid Miller, a public figure in Texas, shared a similar alarming encounter to Facebook that has since amassed over 176,000 shares.
“Snakes hide in the strangest places,” he wrote alongside the photo below.
“Please check all of your children’s outdoor toys before you let them play with them!” he cautioned. “The only way this was found was because the toy had water in the seat! Please share and get this out to other parents and grandparents!!”
As for Josh McClane, he says his family plans to pick up all the toys every evening from now on. He’s also become much more intentional about checking the kids’ toys before they play now, and hopes his story will encourage other parents to do the same.