Authorities said that a pet alligator was saved in southeast Pennsylvania after being found by landscapers doing work along a creek in Exeter Township.
According to the Animal Rescue League of Berks County (ARL), the Exeter Police Department first learned about the female alligator, dubbed Fluffy, after receiving the animal from the landscaper who found her. According to the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, alligators and crocodiles are not commonly seen in Pennsylvania, thus the finding was unexpected.
When they brought the animal to their sanctuary, a reptile specialist from The Venom Institute inspected it and discovered that the alligator was underweight and had indications of malformation around. They were “most likely brought on by being housed in an inadequately sized enclosure,” according to her lips.
From Creek to Care
The owner of Fluffy had maintained her in a 75-gallon tank for over ten years, according to Rudy Arceo, founder of the Venom Institute, which was “shocking” because 10-year-old alligators are “supposed to be a lot bigger than that.”
When the alligator was discovered, Arceo claimed that it was only around 2.5 feet long when she should have been “six feet, if not bigger.” According to Arceo, “as far as a living animal is concerned, this is probably ranking at one of the worst that I’ve personally seen.”
He described the reptile’s condition as “really deplorable,” noting that its teeth looked to be horizontal rather than vertical and that its nose curved forward.
Arceo stated that “(It) was a clear indication of a number of problems, including improper feeding, possibly even a lack of UVB illumination, and the most important is enclosure size. The alligator’s owner eventually picked up their pet, according to the ARL, and informed the rescue group that she had vanished from an outside enclosure during the area’s recent flash floods.