A frantic call for help from a pet-sitter who was watching a boa constrictor wrap itself around a dog at an Amherst home.
Amherst Police said it was a gruesome scene at the home Wednesday afternoon after the snake somehow escaped its cage and killed an eight month old puppy.
Investigators said that the homeowner was away at the time, when a pet-sitter called police to tell them what she was witnessing.
Tonight, both the snake and the dog are dead.
"I was very surprised. First of all, I had absolutely no idea that anybody on this street had a boa constrictor," said neighbor Chris Hoch.
Neighbors on Country Corners Road in South Amherst were shocked about what police say happened at a home on the usually quiet street.
"I have a personal phobia of snakes, I just don't like snakes," Hoch added.
Amherst Police said that it was around 4:30 p.m. Wednesday when a pet-sitter called police, frantically saying that the pet boa constrictor was strangling the pet dog, who police said was an eight month old Cocker Spaniel.
"By the time we arrived, the boa had wrapped around the puppy and the dog wasn't breathing. The boa was about eight feet long about eight feet inch in diameter. We tried to get it off, but it wouldn't let go," said Amherst Police Sgt. Jesus Arocho.
Both pets were owned by the same person and police said they called the owner to let her know what was happening,
The owner gave police the okay to humanely kill the snake after it was becoming aggressive towards the officers.
However, the question remains: how the snake got out of it's cage in the first place.
"We don't know that. The cage was closed and somehow, it appeared there were some things knocked over on top of the cage, so it may have gotten out or the puppy not knowing may have knocked some things out that was keeping it closed," Arocho added.
The animal control officer in Amherst tells western mass news that state regulations allow residents to keep any size boa constrictor without permits.
Amherst Animal Welfare Officer Carol Hepburn said told Western Mass News that Massachusetts regulations allow pet boas of any size. That law has only been around for three years.
"It's a pretty creepy story," Hoch said.
Amherst Police said that no charges are expected against anyone involved. They said it really was just a tragic accident.
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