They say a lady never tells, and neither did Muffy. So it took four grown men and a woman to hold down the 9-year-old Burmese python to find out just how big she was.
Muffy measured in at 22 feet, 1/4 inch long — enough to take the title of largest Burmese python on display in America away from the Bronx Zoo's Lulu. The New York snake had been advertised as being 19 feet, 6 inches.
But Muffy wasn't ready for her 15 minutes. She fumed, spewing from her nostrils and opening her jaws wide enough to swallow a poodle as she was held down and measured six inches at a time, the News-Press reported Monday.
Muffy's keepers, Bob Cowlishaw, owner of Everglades Day Safari and Capt. Bob's Excellent Adventure, and Ski Oleski, owner of Lake Trafford Marina, bought the snake five weeks ago from Miami herpetologist Tom Crutchfield.
Cowlishaw says she's young to be that big, and still growing at a foot or two a year.
He says he didn't measure Muffy for bragging rights, but instead to call attention to the problem of pet pythons being released into the wild.
"A person goes to a pet shop and buys a baby python. It's cute. You feed it mice. Pretty soon, you feed it rats. It's not long before this creature is too big for the average person. And it's dangerous," he said.