(Public domain images).

B.C. man charged with cruelty after doing procedure on python without sedation: SPCA

MISSION, B.C. — A man in Mission, B.C., has been charged with animal cruelty after the SPCA says he performed a procedure on a friend’s blood python without pain medication or sedatives.

Michael Hopcraft goes by the nickname “The Reptile Guy” and runs an organization that brings reptiles to schools and birthday parties for educational presentations.

He says he only learned of the charges when reached by a Canadian Press reporter on Tuesday.

Hopcraft says he gave the blood python an enema but pain medication or sedatives are not necessary for such a procedure and that he spoke with a veterinarian who told him the snake wouldn’t be in danger.

The B.C. SPCA says Crown counsel approved two counts of animal cruelty charges and one count of violating the Veterinarians Act after a video emerged of Hopcraft doing the procedure.

Chief prevention and enforcement officer Marcie Moriarty says it caused suffering and distress to the snake and could have killed the animal.

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