Dog Finds Missing Python That Fled Dartmouth Frat
Vicky Moors and her dog Daisy pose for a portrait on July 24, 2013, in the area where they discovered a ball python that had been missing at Dartmouth College. (Valley News - James M. Patterson) Purchase photo reprints »
Hanover — A small dog known to wear pink collars and matching sweaters made national headlines Wednesday after she discovered a ball python that had escaped on Dartmouth College’s campus last week.
Daisy, a 4-year-old Jack Russell/Dachshund mix, found the 3-foot-long snake while walking with her owner outside Tabard House, a coed Dartmouth fraternity, around 8 p.m. Tuesday night.
The snake’s disappearance had been picked up by the national news media when it went missing from its tank at the fraternity last week. Tabard President Connie Gong, a Dartmouth student who is watching the snake this summer, first noticed it was gone on Thursday.
The story erupted online again Wednesday, as the Associated Press picked up the scent. Other news outlets produced their own articles, including the Atlantic Wire, which dubbed the pooch “Hero Dog.”
Dartmouth student Vicky Jean Moors, Daisy’s owner and a house manager at Tabard, said she was returning from a walk with Daisy when she began barking at something at the side of Tabard house.
“I was walking back into the house, but Daisy was stuck sniffing this spot under a wood board where there is a hole for utilities and a bunch of rocks,” she said in a Facebook message Tuesday night. “We looked there (for the snake) Friday but it wasn’t there/we didn’t see it. She sometimes chases mice under it so I knew it was a perfect spot.
“And she was adamant so I lifted the wood panel. (The snake) was there and (Daisy) kept looking for a way to jump in. When Connie went (to get the snake) Daisy was about to lunge in and I grabbed her and that’s the sound she started making and didn’t stop for a couple minutes.”
Christine Pinello, a veterinarian at River Road Veterinary Clinic in Norwich, told the Valley News last week that escaped pythons don’t often venture outside, but instead seek hiding places nearby, sometimes in crevices inside homes.
And while Hanover Police sought the public’s help in locating the snake, advising people to use caution if they came across it, Pinello said humans and animals alike were in little danger. Adult pythons can grow up to 5 feet, and they’re not poisonous. A python like the one that escaped Tabard would only eat small animals like mice, Pinello said.
“A 3-foot python really isn’t big,” Pinello said. “The python is probably scared.”
Hanover Police Captain Frank Moran said his department was aware that the snake had been found and the snake is now a “non-issue.”
He offered a joke, too: “The only thing that’s concerning is that now it’s 9 feet long.”
The Dartmouth reported Tuesday night that Gong said the python — named Lyude, and presumably still only 3 feet long — has been returned to its cage. Gong could not be reached for comment Wednesday.
For her part, Moors said she’s thrilled that Daisy played the part that she did.
“I’m so happy she found it and everyone knows how great she is,” she said.
Maggie Cassidy can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 603-727-3220. Read more online at www.vnews.com and leave a comment on our Facebook page, “Valley News.”