LEESBURG, Fla. – A rattlesnake got a little too close for comfort to one family in Lake County -- until the family cat intervened.
"He's a little protector," said 10-year-old Jaiden Peterson, who got Oreo the cat a little more than a year ago.
Last weekend, the Peterson family noticed an eastern diamondback rattlesnake in their yard in Lady Lake.
As the kids were going inside for safety, Oreo sprung into action.
"To be honest with you, I think he was protecting the people of the home because that's just the kind of cat he is," grandmother Cyndi Anderson said.
The feline fought off the venomous snake and kept it away from the Peterson family.
"He got bit by a snake," Jaiden said. "His leg was swollen. It was like his whole entire leg from here and there, and he was bleeding."
"Our biggest fear was he went downhill quick and we were afraid we were going to lose him," Anderson added.
Oreo's story is certainly one to remember for those at the Animal Clinic of Leesburg.
"Very unusual," said Dana Lowe, veterinary technician. "It's not quite as common with cats. We do see it with dogs a little more often that get bit."
Once Oreo was at the vet's office, Dr. Amy Huff was able to help out.
"If they don't get the proper care and the proper treatment, it could be fatal for them," Lowe explained.
Oreo still has to wear some bandages and stay inside. But for his family, he's one tough cat.
A PayPal account "Pleasesaveoreo@gmail.com" has been set up to help the family out with medical bills for Oreo.