Childrearing

Family Finds Rattlesnake in Toilet, and There Were 23 More Under the House

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On a scale of 1-10, with 1 being “I would calmly stop to pick up my photo albums and phone charger on the way out” and 10 being “I wouldn’t even have stopped to take a photo,” how fast would you burn down your house if you saw a rattlesnake climbing out of your toilet? Because that’s what happened to one Texas family this week, and then it got even worse.

According to CBS, a family from Abilene, Texas, called a company called Big Country Snake Removal in a panic and said there was a rattlesnake sticking its head out of their toilet.

OK, that’s pretty terrifying. (I’d already have burned my house down.) But snake removal specialist and overall snake fan Nathan Hawkins just thought it was a bit unusual to see a rattlesnake come out of a toilet, but not the worst or weirdest thing he’d ever seen.

“They’re actually very, very amazing creatures that are really misunderstand,” Hawkins said to CBS News. “There are irrational fears around them.”

Irrational? I don’t know if this counts as irrational, because then Hawkins went in the family’s basement and found this:

Including the toilet snake, Hawkins found 24 rattlesnakes in the family’s house. And the family has young children. In fact, it was one of the family’s little boys who found the snake in the first place. He went to use the bathroom one morning, and found the snake looking up at him. (It’s a good thing he looked in the toilet before sitting down!)

The family said they hadn’t seen a single snake around their property for years before the rattlesnake came up out of the toilet. They’d just been living with a couple dozen venomous roommates without any idea the snakes were there.

Hawkins says that’s all part of how snakes are. They’re designed not to be seen, so you can go your whole life living with a bunch of snakes without even knowing. Hawkins recommends people schedule regular snake inspections to make sure they do not have two dozen venomous snakes under their houses. I suspect he’s getting a lot of calls right now.