GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WSVN) — A Florida vet got up close and personal with a crocodile after it swallowed a sneaker.
A 10-and-a-half-foot-long Nile crocodile named Anuket ended up strapped to a stretcher after she ate a shoe, regurgitated it and then ate it again.
Anuket was sick, so she was taken to UF Veterinary Hospitals where she was properly anesthetized as doctors tried to get the shoe out of her.
The 350-pound reptile had her mouth propped open and limbs secured when a first-year zoo veterinary medicine resident stuck his entire arm into her mouth.
The crocodile’s teeth could be seen resting on Dr. Garrett Fraess’ shoulder.
“I was all the way up here inside the crocodile, so I could not have been more in unless my head was going in,” said Fraess.
It is believed the shoe fell off someone riding a zipline at the Alligator Farm in Saint Augustine, where Anuket lives.
“Because I happen to have the longest arms on the zoo med team, I was offered up as the one to reach my hand into the crocodile’s mouth to see if I could retrieve the shoe,” said Fraess.
He wasn’t able to, so the zoo med team took her into surgery.
They cut her stomach to get the shoe out successfully.
The now slimy green shoe was removed.
“I think everyone was surprised; the shoe was a lot bigger than people anticipated,” said UF Vet Hospital surgeon Dr. Adam Biedrzycki. “Also, everyone I’ve told this story too has asked, ‘Was there a foot attached to the shoe?’ which there obviously wasn’t. It was just a shoe.”
The good news is Anuket is recovering nicely and should be feeling better within a week or so.
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