Our Guide to Determining Whether a Snake Is Venomous or Not

Snakes may be limbless, but they are still creatures that you should be wary of. In the United States, there are countless rattlesnakes, copperheads, cottonmouths, and coral snakes slithering around, just waiting for their prey. If you see a snake near your home, we don’t recommend handling or killing it, as you could get bitten!

Even though our Revoke® Snake Repellent is perfect for keeping snakes away, it won’t do much for your snake bite. Besides learning how to keep snakes away from your home, it’s also crucial to know whether a snake is venomous or not. 

Read our tips below to identify a venomous snake:

Observe Their Behavior

Analyzing the snake’s behavior in your home is one the most reliable ways of figuring out if they’re venomous. Since each snake species exhibits different behaviors, you’ll be able to tell what kind they are and if you should be extra cautious. 

Although observing a snake’s behavior is a great identifier, doing this will be difficult for untrained individuals. Studying snake behaviors isn’t in the homeowner’s handbook, so understandably, you probably wouldn’t be able to determine if there’s a venomous snake in your house or not.

However, although it may seem unpleasant to you, learning about how a snake move is crucial. So even if you’re confident that you won’t encounter a venomous snake in your backyard, you should still learn about their behavior traits. 

If you hear them shaking rattles on their tails, then you should stay far away from them. A pond or swamp near your home increases the possibility of you running into cottonmouths, which are snakes that live in or near water. Copperheads are also ones to watch out for, especially if your house is located near forests and rivers.

Look at Their Head Shape and Snout

You can easily differentiate a venomous snake from a non-venomous one by their heads. This is because non-venomous snakes have rounded heads, while venomous snakes have triangular-shaped ones, which helps them deter predators. However, keep in mind that some non-venomous snakes can make their heads look triangular by flattening their heads to look more dangerous.

Aside from their head shapes, you can also determine if a snake is venomous or not by the pits or holes on their snouts. Dangerous snakes, such as rattlesnakes, copperheads, coral snakes, and cottonmouths all have two pits on their snouts, which is why they’re called pit vipers.

For an inexperienced individual, it can be difficult to check their snout from a safe distance, so we recommend contacting a wildlife professional to handle the situation and remove the snake for you.

Examine Their Pupils

One way to identify if the snake in your home is venomous or not is by looking at its pupils. Poisonous snakes have cat-like eyes, with thin, black, vertical pupils surrounded by a yellow-green eyeball, while harmless snakes have rounded pupils. Unfortunately, examining the pupils can be challenging to do at a distance—we don’t recommend getting near a snake to check its pupils.


No one ever dreams of having snakes in the house, but unfortunately, it happens more often than you think! If you ever come across a snake in your home, make sure to have an indoor snake repellent in hand and to determine whether it’s poisonous or not. Remember to call a wildlife professional who can handle the situation as smoothly and quickly as possible.

Are you worried about having snakes slithering around and inside your home? When you have Revoke® reptile repellent, you can sleep soundly and live comfortably without the threat of those scaly and slimy creatures. So buy our repellent today to keep the snakes away!