Pet Cobra in Thailand Kills Expat – Or, Suicide?

Pattaya, Thailand police are blaming a Naja kaouthia cobra for the December 2nd, 2010 death of an expat from Norway. This 60 year old man, Per Christian Lindgaard, kept the cobra as a pet in his condo apparently.

Here’s what is strange about the whole thing…

He was already admitted once to the hospital for a bite from this cobra. He survived, and was back at the condo. He was bitten again, and didn’t go to the hospital. His naked body was found on the bed… He didn’t try to tell anyone he was bitten. He didn’t call the ambulance. He didn’t even put the cobra back into the cage after it bit him?

If he was bitten once and didn’t die from it – but still required hospitalization – he had to have a real healthy FEAR of the snake, and know that he didn’t know what the hell he was doing with it. Yet, he kept it in a small glass aquarium with a flimsy styrofoam lid (it appears like in the video).

A cobra – any venomous snake – could kill you very quickly if you have an allergic reaction (anaphylactic shock) to the venom. You could die in minutes. I don’t think this happened to the guy because he was already bitten once, made it to the hospital, was treated, and returned home. I don’t think his body would have gone into shock so quickly the second time he was bitten if it didn’t happen the first time. I’m not a doctor – just a guess.

The maid opened the door after getting no answer – and because of a foul smell from the room. She found his naked body on the bed. Police found dark blister wounds on both of his legs – presumably from the snake.

Police officers were suddenly surprised when a 1 meter long Naja kaouthia – monocled cobra – appeared.

Does this make sense to anyone? I’m calling it a suicide – in my opinion. It just doesn’t really add up for me. If you’re bitten by a deadly snake – and WANT to live – you tell someone or go to the hospital. You wouldn’t lie naked on your bed and let it run around the room.

On the other hand, if it was an accident and the guy died so quickly that he couldn’t react… I’m completely wrong. People that don’t understand how to handle deadly snakes – should not. The only good that could possibly come out of this story is that other expats in Thailand or elsewhere in Asia, the world – don’t downplay the serious risk to life these snakes are.

Video of the room Mr. Lindgaard was found in – and the cobra:

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