Imagine a father’s distress when his two daughters, ages 11 and 18, found an alligator in their home’s backyard… all the way in Canada.
Sophie Ertsinian, 11, and Christina Ertsinian, 18, of Hamilton, Ontario, were getting out of the pool on a sunny, humid day when they spotted the 5-foot-long alligator.
They originally thought it was a pool toy their dad had left out as a prank.
“As [Sophie] was drying off, she saw it sitting in the sun,” their dad Walter Ertsinian told InsideEdition.com. “She goes, ‘I think it’s an alligator. Did dad buy an inflatable alligator to play in the pool, or is it a joke?’”
Then, Sophie noticed its feet move and screamed for her sister.
Sophie and Christina got closer to the gator to check it out as it stood still, but ran into the home screaming when the reptile turned its head.
“Sure enough, there was an alligator,” said Walter, who finally came to check the backyard after several moments of hesitation. “I didn’t know if it was injured or just sleeping, I’m not familiar with the animal or how it reacts other than what you see on television.”
When he dialed 911 and the operator asked if he needed paramedics, police, or firefighters, he responded, “None.”
“I have an alligator in my backyard,” he told the operator. “I’m not pranking you, I’m serious.”
As animal services made their way to the home, Walter started fencing the reptile in using a picnic table and other loose furniture around the backyard.
“It turned around and it was making its way toward us a little bit,” Walter explained.
Eventually, an animal control officer arrived and Walter filmed officials taking the animal away.
“If this were in Florida, this would not even be a story but up here, it wouldn’t survive the winter exposure,” he said, speculating the alligator might have been someone’s pet. “To have one up here is totally odd and rare.”