Snake Vs. Pet Sitter

How do I even begin!! Let me first start off by saying that I LOVE ALL animals, great and small. I even owned a Legless Lizard once when I was a teenager and named it Honeybun after a character in a Robert A. Heinlein book, Stranger in a Strange Land.

But, when it comes to unexpected visitors that have no arms and legs that’s a totally different story!

It all happened on Wednesday when I arrived at my clients home for my mid-day visit and play time… I opened the back door to be greeted by Malibu, a 5 1/2 month old Golden with a ton of energy. As we sat next to the back door greeting and giving each other love, I happen to catch something out of the corner of my left eye.  It was a HUGE SNAKE????? OMG!! Okay, so it was about 3 to 3 1/2 feet long. But, it was HUGE to me!

It was slithering from right behind us along the bottom of the house and was heading for the side planter.  I have not had this much adrenaline rush through my body since being at the epicenter of the 1994 Northridge Earthquake! My legs went weak like Jello and my heart was racing….  I get chills just thinking about it now!! Ick!

At this point Malibu had turned around and saw the snake and started to dart for it.  I grabbed her collar and trying not to transfer my panic to her tossed her into the house. Then I looked for Shadow, her 14 year old sister who was asleep on the shady grass and got her inside the house as well.

I went back outside looked at the snakes tail to make sure that it wasn’t a Rattlesnake. Thank goodness it wasn’t.  It looked like a Garter Snake (pictured above).  At this point, the slithery little devil was in the side planter and going under the low palm that is planted there for cover from the sun. It was a particularly hot day and I’m sure it was looking for shade.

My heart was racing and I was shaking so bad I could barely think. I ran back inside instantly called my husband and asked him how soon he can come over to my clients house.  He told me he would be there in 30 minutes. In the meantime, I was to try to get a picture of the snake to text him so that he knew what kind it was he was going to have to wrangle.  I was also instructed to get gardening gloves, a shovel and a pillow case. This was turning out to be quite an adventure!!!

Once he got there. He geared up and we both went outside to hunt down Mr. Snake. We didn’t know quite what we were going to do wih him at this point but we had to locate him first.

So there we are out in the back yard…. Picture a handsome man if I do say so myself; in a dress shirt, dress slacks, dress shoes, with his Blackberry plastered to his side in a holster, wearing leather gardening gloves, holding a shovel climbing around in the planter. I on the other hand, was standing safely on the grass side of the planter at the ready with a pillow case. My husband even climbed down the back hillside thinking it may have followed the planter all the way down to that area.

Mr. Snake was not to be found. About 30 minutes later we aborted the snake removal mission.  At this point my nerves were calmed down a bit. My husband went about his day.  I left the pups inside the house until my next visit later that afternoon. So that if Mr. Snake wanted to make a run for it he had time.

I don’t know if there is a moral to this story… All I know is that I have to man up when it comes to the unexpected. I felt so silly after it was all over. 😉



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