It’s the stuff of urban legend, but a man’s encounter with a snake in his washroom was all too real.
Police officers from 12 Division were called to 220 Woolner Ave., near Jane and St. Clair, just before midnight Tuesday when a man reported a snake coming out of his toilet. That snake turned out to be a non-poisonous python.
“When I opened the [lid] I see the snake wrapped up and I closed it back and I called for help,” resident Ramdat Punwassie told CityNews.
Amazingly, he said he wasn’t frightened when he saw the snake curled up inside the toilet bowl.
By the time cops arrived the snake was in the bathtub.
“I just grabbed it behind the head and my wonderful partner here held open the pillowcase and we dropped it in,” Const. Nicole Jamieson said.
A water shut-off notice was posted on the building’s front doors reminding residents of plumbing repairs Wednesday.
The snake-in-the-toilet call was the second reptile report in the area Tuesday.
Earlier in the day, around 1:50 a.m., a couple came home to their apartment down the street, at 190 Woolner Ave, and found a corn snake inside their home. The creature, which is not dangerous, apparently came in through a wall.
The same two officers, Jamieson and Const. Andrew Posluszny, responded to both reptile reports. They’ve given the creatures nicknames: Jesse and Dirk.
Both snakes were taken away by police and handed over to experts at Reptilia, a reptile zoo on Rutherford Road in Vaughan.
It’s not known where they came from.
“They are fairly popular pets…they are relatively placid and docile,” Andre NGO, Zoo Manager at Reptilia said of the python. “His big defence is actually rolling into a ball and hiding his head. He’s pretty much harmless.”
These are among a number of similar incidents over the past few years in Toronto.
Back in 2006, an Egyptian cobra escaped from its enclosure and disappeared in a rooming house in Weston. The creature belonged to a man living there. Despite an exhaustive search, the reptile was never found.
It wasn’t the first time animal services had to visit that particular address. A viper was seized from the house around the same time as the cobra, and a crocodile was reportedly removed from the residence a year earlier.
In January 2010 police found several snakes, including a venomous viper, in a home near Queen Street East and Greenwood.
And in November 2010 a couple found two pythons in their Danforth and Coxwell area home in less than a month. The owner of the reptiles later stepped forward to claim his pets.