66-Inch Long Lizard Takes Opportunity to Bust Out of Pet Shop, Roaming Streets of City


We’ve heard about lost cats and dogs. It’s not exactly rare to see a pup wandering the streets because they’ve managed to find a way to sneak out of the house.

Cats are notorious for working on their own schedules, and often times aren’t missing or lost at all: they are precisely where they mean to be. Sometimes they get picked up by kind or not-so-kind people, but outdoor cats seem to have their own agenda.

When other critters get loose, it draws more interest. If a bird gets out, good luck catching that thing again. It’s probably off dipping and diving with other feathered friends.

Occasionally less common critters like ponies or llamas will get out and make the news with their escapades, but here’s a new one for you.

Mike Estevez of Mike’s Pets in Spring Valley (San Diego), California, has warned his neighbors to be on the lookout for a creature of his that is out roaming the streets.

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A monitor lizard. That’s not just any lizard: not a little fence lizard or even an iguana. These creatures get massive.

The one out on the loose at the moment is five and a half feet long — that’s longer than some people are tall.

Monitor lizards are fairly common as pets for reptile lovers. One of the well-known varieties, the Komodo, can top out around eight or ten feet long when fully grown.

And it eats meat. So there’s basically a meat-eating miniature dragon hiding somewhere in San Diego.

The photos posted by the pet shop show him investigating empty shoes and confronting what looks like a crawfish, so he’s not a giant and probably won’t go after anyone’s outdoor pets unless they’re chomp-sized.

Some species of this lizard even eat deer… but fortunately for everyone involved, this guy isn’t quite big enough to handle deer-sized meals.

At sharp contrast to the lizard’s tough demeanor and potentially creepy looks, his name is Bubbles. Bubbles the monitor lizard.

He’s actually quite friendly as far as lizards go, and was known to hang out in the store during the day as guests filed in and out. But Estevez still warns that if someone spots him, they should not try to corral him themselves.

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The big lizard has been missing since March 4, and the local animal control has been notified.

While Estevez isn’t completely sure how the lizard escaped its cage, his best bet is that it squeezed through a small gap in the floor.

Allegedly, a surveillance video shows the beast out of his cage, strolling toward the back exit of the store.

Estevez wrote on Mike’s Pets Instagram, sharing a photo and letting their fans know of Bubbles’ disappearance. “Our beloved #pet and #animalambassador bubbles has gone missing ? Bubbles is a #blackthroatmonitor that is very use to people. If you have any information pleeeeease call the store!”

So if you’re in the area, make sure to keep an eye out for this fellow — but don’t try to catch him yourself. You may end up with more than a story to tell.

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