Warm weather has returned to West Texas and with it, a particular danger from an indigenous species: Rattlesnakes.

The warm spring weather has awakened the slumbering reptiles from there winter hibernation. If you live in rural area, make sure your kids know not to attempt to play with or tease the creatures. Tell them to stay away and call the nearest adult who can then notify animal control.

Pets are a different story. Some clinics have already seen several dogs and cats arrive with swollen heads or limbs. The rattlesnake's characteristic warning rattle draws the curious pet or horse's in and they can't help but to go investigate the coiled up critter making the noise. That's when a bit may occur.

Rattlesnake bites in horses are very dangerous and a pretty common occurrence, but knowing what to do if your horse is unfortunate enough to have a run-in with a rattlesnake can make a huge difference in the recovery time and the extent of the tissue damage caused by the rattlesnake venom.

The folks over at Heavenly Gates have some advice for horse owners who are concerned about rattlesnake bites.