LAS VEGAS (KSNV) – Meet Aurora, a 7-year-old, 12-foot python who still has a few feet left to grow.
Her owner Jennifer Wessel is a lover of exotic animals and recently added the serpent to her family of pets.
WARNING: The following video contains strong language:
But they recently had a close call that could have cost Aurora her life.
“When she was eating her rabbit, she actually accidentally ate the blanket with the rabbit, because it more than likely just kind of smelt like her food,” Wessel said.
Wessel noticed Aurora was unusually enlarged and that her blanket was missing.
“These guys cannot – they’re not made to digest that fabric, and they have a very special digestive system,” she said.
But Wessel said she knew just where to go: the Las Vegas Veterinary Specialty Center.
“Her stomach was completely full, so there was no way that she would have been able to eat anything, so she would probably eventually starve to death,” Dr. Nicole Smee said.
Smee said in all her years she’s never had a case like this one.
For this exotic reptile, Smee said surgery was too risky, and that their best option was to perform an endoscopy, also known as scoping.
They took a flexible tube with a camera attached and stuck it down Aurora’s throat and into her stomach, where they inserted a grasping tool that helped them pull the blanket from her belly.
“We had no idea how big the blanket was until that thing started coming out, and we saw how big her jaws would actually open. It was incredible,” Smee said.
Smee and her staff were on edge, but the procedure took about 30 minutes and Aurora will live to slither another day.
“We’re just so thankful that everything went well, and I’m still able to provide this baby what she needs,” Wessel said.