|image from here|
I have a friend who has a friend (this is how urban legends usually start, I know, but I promise this is true.) We'll call the friend Molly. Molly had a pet python. Molly had owned this python since he was just a little worm of a guy. She fed him & cared for him, and for fun, she would let him out of his cage to slither around the house.
This snake grew. He grew and he grew and he grew.
One day Molly woke up from from her nap and there, stretched out full length beside her was the python. Weird, she thought.
That day, or the day after, Molly realized that her snake hadn't eaten in a long time, more than a week. She took her python to the vet to have him checked out--make sure there wasn't anything wrong.
Her vet told her, "You need to get rid of the snake now.....
....because he is preparing to eat you."
Apparently, before a python eats an animal, it will stretch out full length next to the animal, to make sure it is long enough to swallow the entire thing.
Are you freaked out? I totally was. But then, as I finished typing this last bit, I googled snake preparing to eat, and snopes popped up. It isn't true. Rats. I heard it from such a trustworthy source, too.
I guess it is a stretch for the snake to be problem solving like that. "Just a little more, a little more. Dang! 2 inches short. I'll have to wait to eat Molly a few more months."
Here is something I saw with my own eyes, though. On craig's list a year or so ago there was a bunk bed/reptile tank for sale, only $300. My friend sent me the link and I saw the photo of it with my own eyes. The bottom "bunk" was encased in plexiglass so as to house the snake. The top had a mattress on it.
I've always wondered two things:
"Who could stand the smell & heat so as to be able to sleep so near the snake?"
"Who would put their child in bed above a snake large enough to eat the child?"
--because a snake large enough to need a twin bed sized cage is pretty big. I've seen one in a cage that size in someone's house and it was creepy. My whole mind was occupied with getting away fast. And I'm not in general scared of snakes. I just have a healthy respect for things that can kill me.