I’m sure no one ever wants to see this in their at-home toilet…or any toilet, for that matter. 

What would you do if you opened up your toilet lid to reveal a snake coiled up in your toilet bowl? At the very least, shut the lid and decide to do your business elsewhere, probably.

That’s what one Nagasaki man did after finding a 1.6-meter (5.2-foot) long snake in his toilet on October 2. At around 4 p.m., the 40-year-old man, who resides in a second-floor apartment in the town of Sasa in the southwestern prefecture of Nagasaki, lifted the lid of his toilet, found the snake, and promptly shut it again. Needless to say, it was not his snake.

“I was so surprised I didn’t need to go anymore,” the man said.

The next day, a specialist from the local Environmental Hygiene Control Office arrived to remove the snake from the man’s toilet. Apparently, it was a rainbow boa, a non-venomous snake native to South America, and weighed 1.9 kilograms (4.2 pounds).

Officials at the Emukae Prefectural Police Station, who were also notified, speculated that it may have been someone’s pet that escaped through the plumbing. Rainbow boas are sold regularly in pet stores and do not require any particular licensing to own in Japan, so tracking down the owner could have been a problem.

▼ A rainbow boa

Luckily, the police didn’t have to look far. By October 5 they had found the owner, a man who lived in the apartment directly below the victim’s. He confessed that he lost the snake when he placed it in the bathtub while cleaning its cage at the end of September. It managed to escape the tub and wedge itself into a small space between the toilet tank and the wall, where the owner could not remove it, and though he tried to keep an eye on it, the snake had managed to disappear by October 1.

Presumably, the snake managed to enter the plumbing and climb up to the second floor by October 2, where it was then discovered by the owner’s hapless upstairs neighbor. On the morning of the 5th, the owner saw the news about the discovered snake and guessed it might be his, so he contacted the police station, who returned the snake to him.

“I’m sorry for causing so much trouble,” he said. “I’m going to make an effort to learn more about snakes now.”

▼ We thank you for giving us something new to keep us awake at night.

Thankfully the snake is not dangerous, and no one was hurt beyond one man receiving what was quite possibly the biggest shock of his life. Still, there’s a lesson to be learned here for everybody: snake owners, keep an eye on your snake at all times if it’s out of its cage–they’re notoriously good at hiding and escaping.

And non-snake owners, always check your toilet bowl before you sit down. And for good measure, keep the lid closed, too.

Source: Mainichi Shimbun via livedoor news via My Game News Flash, Mainichi Shimbun
Top image: Photo-AC

Insert images: Wikimedia Commons/KaroH, Pakutaso