A member of the public in Denbigh had a fright – when her dog found a scorpion running across the living room floor.
RSPCA Cymru was alerted after the tiny scorpion was found by six-year-old Hungarian Vizsla dog Otis at a property on The Hay Barn in the North Wales town on Saturday 5 September.
Fortunately, the scorpion is uninjured and has been transferred to appropriate accommodation with a keeper who lives in the region.
The scorpion is from the Euscorpius genus – and is therefore not dangerous, and no licence under the Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976 is required to own them in Wales.
It is unknown where the scorpion came from – but the RSPCA suspects it may be an escaped pet, or have returned amid somebody’s holiday luggage. However, there are also some small colonies living in the wild in the UK.
Should anyone have information about a previous owner of the scorpion, they have been urged to contact the RSPCA’s inspectorate appeal line on 0300 123 8018.
The rescue was completed by RSPCA animal collection officer Will Galvin.
RSPCA chief inspector Leanne Hardy said: “This must have come as a mighty surprise to this unsuspecting Denbigh family – after their dog spotted a scorpion casually strolling across the living room floor.
“Fortunately, the tiny scorpion was safe – and is now at appropriate facilities.
“While we have no idea where this scorpion came from, we suspect it is most likely to either be an escaped pet, or to have somehow travelled back with a holidaymaker from the continent. However, some colonies of this scorpion can live in the wild in the UK.
“This wasn’t a dangerous species of scorpion – but we’ve no idea how he ended up house-visiting in Denbigh. Anyone with information is urged to contact our inspectorate appeal line on 0300 123 8018.”
Karen Roberts, whose dog Otis found the scorpion said: “We were getting ready for bed – and suddenly our dog Otis was very alert to something on our wooden flooring.
“We put the light on, and something looked rather interesting! I managed to pull the dog away, and there was a creature I couldn’t quite identify, but thought was a scorpion.
“I sent photographs to my boss who is a geoscientist – who confirmed it was a scorpion, and was likely non-native. Fortunately, I was able to confine the little scorpion into a box with some sand, and he seemed quite content.
“We contacted the RSPCA – and it was the first time both the call-handler and the officer had dealt with a scorpion call! It’s great to hear the scorpion has settled into a safe new home.”
RSPCA officers have remained on the frontline throughout the coronavirus crisis, responding to animal welfare emergencies. Should you wish to support the charity’s work, you can donate online.