A four-to-five-foot-long snake that turned out to be a boa constrictor was found coming out of a wooded area and going onto a lawn in the Wolfhurst area early Monday morning.

Belmont County Cpl. Elizabeth Sall responded to the call and retrieved the snake, believed to be an escaped pet.

Cpl. Sall and her husband, Deputy Jack Sall, are experienced reptile handlers and members of Belmont County’s Dangerous Wild Animal Response Team (DWART).

Deputy Jack Sall said it’s a good thing the boa constrictor was found because it wouldn’t have survived another night in the outdoors.

He said between the nighttime temperatures and predators like possums, coyotes and raccoons, the snake—which was clearly born and bred in captivity—would not have known how to stay safe, and would have perished.

Sall said temperatures and environment in the Ohio Valley can’t sustain an exotic reptile outdoors.

“Snakes can make great pets, as long as you provide proper care and husbandry,” he said. “But you have to be a responsible owner. It’s important to do the research and provide the right care.”

He said the boa constrictor has been taken to a local reptile keeper and breeder for proper care.

He said the snake is healthy and will be well taken care of.