*shivers

A python was discovered by a man out walking in North Leitrim over the weekend.

The snake was spotted in Kinlough on Sunday, hanging out on a pathway.

via Longford Leader

Gardai were quickly notified and the ISPCA were dispatched to the scene.

 

Stray and unwanted snakes, stowaway lizards and even a scorpion are just some of the exotic pets encountered by the Dublin Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (DSPCA).

 

There are currently 14 snakes at the DSPCA shelter in Rathfarnham, Dublin.

 

Some were left there by owners but the rest escaped from houses or were abandoned and found slithering through the undergrowth of gardens on hot summer days.

 

Some have even been located, curled up in hot presses or behind bathroom sinks in cold weather. 

 

According to Gillian Bird, DSPCA education officer, 'Snakes should be kept in a properly sealed case because they can wriggle through gaps.'

 

'Being cold-blooded, they need heat to digest their food, so will head for warm places if they escape.'

 

Pet shops and on line sites sell exotic pets all over Ireland, but when they go missing it's more likely they will turn up in built-up areas than in open countryside.

 

Brian Gillen CEO of the DSPCA says, 'potential owners should carry out extensive research before buying.'