A boa constrictor dumped outside a reptile shop in Essex has been rescued by the RSPCA
The large snake, measuring around five feet long was found dumped outside a reptile shop in Leigh-on-Sea
The RSPCA is calling on prospective owners of any exotic pet to thoroughly research the animal's needs, using expert sources, and only consider keeping one if they can ensure they are fully able to provide for these needs.
The needs of non-domestic animals are just the same as they would be in the wild and are often linked to a specialist environment and diet.
The RSPCA says people are unaware of how much of a commitment these animals are when they take them on.
They may become aggressive, grow very large, live for a long time or require a licence or paperwork to be legally kept or sold.
Without proper care exotic animals can suffer from serious diseases and, in severe cases or if left untreated, they can die.