HomeOutdoorsViralSnake Tooth Discovered Stuck in Man’s Finger After Months

Snake Tooth Discovered Stuck in Man’s Finger After Months

by Caitlin Berard
(Photo by erniedecker via Getty Images)

As a snake expert and lifelong reptile owner, Collie Ennis is no stranger to the occasional bite. Unlike owners of more typical pets, snake owners have to be prepared for a “friendly” nip every now and then. Though reptiles can form a level of trust for their owners, they’re not particularly compassionate.

For Collie Ennis, that was never a problem, just a reality of reptile ownership. Well, up until a bizarre incident led to a year’s worth of agony for the Irishman, that is.

“It started just before the pandemic in Christmas of 2019,” Ennis told Newsweek. “I noticed a small lump and pain in my middle finger on my right hand. I assumed it was a splinter but couldn’t see it clearly so left it to hopefully work its way out. That, unfortunately, didn’t happen.”

Days turned into weeks, which bled into months, and finally, Ennis took action against the “unmerciful pain” in his finger. Unfortunately, the string of doctor’s visits was less helpful than he might have hoped. “I suffered months of regular swelling and pain in the finger followed by trips to the doctor, who again assumed it was a splinter or similar that would eventually work its way out,” he said.

Snake Handler Performs Impromptu Surgery to Remove Fang From Finger

When he could no longer bear the blinding pain, Collie Ennis set an appointment with a specialized clinic, hoping they could remove the foreign object once and for all. Unable to treat him right away, the clinic added him to a waiting list, but on a particularly agonizing night, Ennis decided he couldn’t wait any longer and took the matter into his own hands.

“While on the waiting list I got another nasty flare up and, one night, the pain was so bad I took a small scalpel blade to it myself and hit something hard with the blade as I cut in,” he said. “I got tweezers and managed to grab the end of the hard object with it.”

“I was amazed to see a snake’s fang in the tweezers when I pulled it out,” Ennis continued. “As soon as I realized what the splinter was, it all made sense.”

Collie Ennis Still Enjoys Time Spent With His Scaly Friends

Collie Ennis has been handling snakes and other reptiles all his life, but pulling a fang from your own finger after a full year of pain would be shocking to anyone.

“Most of the snakes in my care are rescues or re-homes,” he said. “And some have had a rough life and aren’t overly fond of people. So the occasional nip on the finger from them is completely understandable. I never considered one of these friendly bites would have left me with a semi-permanent lodger in my finger.”

Though he can’t be sure which snake was the one to leave a parting gift, Ennis has a decent idea. “I’d guess it was a particularly nippy Mexican black king snake of mine called Memnoch,” he said.

The errant fang did nothing to sour the reptile enthusiast’s relationship with his scaly friends. Since the surreal night of the impromptu surgery, however, he’s careful to double-check for stray fangs after receiving a friendly puncture wound.