A pet alligator named Allie grew too big for its bathtub home and ended up in police custody.
The Wasilla Police Department in Alaska got a call asking for help this week in wrangling a 4.5-foot gator. The force’s animal control officer mainly handles stray dogs and cats, “with the occasional rogue chicken thrown in,” reads a post on the department’s Facebook page.
The reptile would soon grow longer than its owners’ tub. And that’s why the cops were called.
The animal control officer collected the gator and took it to a rescue group called Valley Aquatics & Reptile Rescue.
Sheridan Perkins, the group’s owner, posted video of Allie’s arrival in a pet carrier. She is seen petting and cooing at the gator. Allie never lost its cool or snapped at the human hand rubbing the underside of its very long chin.
“I have no fear of animals,” she told InsideEdition.com Thursday. “I don’t get bit very often.”
The original owners of Allie said the alligator was female. So Perkins assumed they were right – until her colleague determined that Allie was actually a male.
How does one determine the sex of an alligator?
“You have to stick your finger up its butt,” Perkins said. “But I wasn’t going to do that.”
She runs a 1,500-square-foot shop in a strip mall. One half is filled with aquariums and fish for sale. The rest is a rescue operation populated by turtles, a ferret, bearded dragons, lizards and a boa constrictor measuring 8 feet and 9 inches.
She had no clue how to handle an alligator, she said. She is seen on the video talking softly to Annie while reaching her hand into the carrier and stroking his back, neck and rubbing between his eyes.
“That’s what I do,” she said of her ability to deal with any member of the animal kingdom. “I just did it.”
Allie now lives in a 150-gallon aquarium. Perkins and her associates are building an enclosure that will provide the growing gator with water and land habitats.
“This is my first alligator,” she said. “I had to do a lot of research.”