Snake surprises Lakeside couple in bathroom

Posted at 7:21 PM, Mar 02, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-02 22:21:25-05

A Lakeside couple was greeted by a scary surprise slithering in their bathroom, and experts believe more will be coming out of hiding.

Earlier this week, Duane Johnson found a snake that looked like a rattlesnake in his bathroom late at night.

He told 10News, "I grabbed the light, got a handful; [I] thought it was a rat or something, so I jumped back and hit the light on. There's a snake hanging over the security light."

His wife, Cindy, heard the commotion and came to check it out.

"She's fearless. She reaches over and grabs the snake and carries it outside," Johnson said.

Not before he snapped a picture, though.

Professional snake handler Tom Minga, of Snake Solutions, said, "This is four snakes now in two weeks we've had at the house; first one in the house."

Minga guessed it entered through an open door and slithered into the bathroom.

Minga, who has never been bitten by a snake, examined the picture of the snake in the Johnson bathroom. It wouldn't have hurt them, he said.

"He found a lyre snake. It's actually venomous, but it can't hurt humans. They look like rattlesnakes; a lot of them end up at the bad end of a shovel because of their looks," said Minga.

He showed 10News three rattlers he just collected, including Southern Pacific rattlesnakes, which are aggressive and dangerous.

Minga said he plans to let them go after training dogs to stay away from them.

10News was present as Minga received a call about a red diamond rattlesnake found in the kennel space of a family's dog. That snake, Minga said, is slower and calmer, but venomous.

There have been five snakes on that property in five days, and Minga isn't surprised because of the weather.

"Couple of weeks because of El Niño, the heat brings them out," he said.