The aquarium’s medical team sewed up Pythie’s ouchie before sending him home to Warfield. (All photos courtesy Vancouver Aquarium)

‘Pythie’ finds hisssss way back to the Kootenays

Oscar’s treasured stuffie was lost during a trip to the Vancouver Aquarium

Pythie is ssssso happy now that he’s been reunited with his owner, four-year-old Oscar Staben of Warfield.

The story began last week when the Staben family was in Vancouver to visit BC Children’s Hospital for a medical test. Afterwards, mom Andrea Hall brought Oscar and his brother Rocco, 2, to visit the Vancouver Aquarium. The boys brought their stuffed snakes along for this highly anticipated outing.

That’s how Oscar’s snake stuffie, called Pythie, became lost so far away from his Kootenay abode.

“To most of us, it’s just a stuffed snake, but to Oscar, it’s his best friend,” said Andrea. “He cried most of the drive home.”

As soon as the family was settled back in, Andrea emailed the aquarium in hopes of getting Pythie back.

Unbeknownst to Andrea, right before she pushed “send,” someone at the Vancouver Aquarium discovered the blue and green stuffed python stranded in the Graham Amazon Gallery. Pythie had a one-inch tear on its tail, so he was a little worse for wear.

That’s when the Aquarium’s Visitor Experience team leapt into action, not only to reunite Pythie with its human, but to create a few special memories along the way.

Kelsey Smith, assistant manager of Visitor Experience, called on the help of head veterinarian Dr. Martin Haulena and the Aquarium’s veterinary team to address the snake’s injury.

The animal experts conducted a thorough physical exam, administered twelve sutures to repair the tear, then monitored the snake through post-operation recovery.

“Care and connection are at the heart of everything we do at the Vancouver Aquarium,” said Karen Howe, director of visitor experience at the Vancouver Aquarium, an Ocean Wise initiative.

“Our team saw an opportunity to turn a sad experience to a truly memorable moment and, in true Vancouver Aquarium style, there was no shortage of helping hands.”

Pythie, along with a treatment plan from the vet team for ‘love and hugs’ as well as some photos from Pythie’s adventures at the Aquarium, were delivered to the Staben family early last week.

“Pythie has arrived safe and sound,” said Andrea. “Thank you for taking such great care of him and for the clean bill of health. It has meant the world to Oscar to see photos of Pythie’s adventures at the Aquarium. I have one truly appreciative little boy.”

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter


The Vancouver Aquarium returned Pythie, by special mail, into the joyful arms of Oscar

Pythie appears to gave enjoyed his time visiting the Vancouver Aquarium.

Just Posted

Police investigating man’s death in Winlaw

Foul play not established, but major crimes unit is investigating

From Fruitvale to Rossland, plenty to do this weekend

Grapevine: List of events in the Trail area for the week of May 23 to May 29

JL Crowe athletes headed to track and field championships

Seven students made the grade at the zone qualifiers in Cranbrook earlier this month

Rossland farmers’ market wilting, organizers hope to spur new growth

12-year-old market considered taking a year off, says manager

Arson the cause of East Trail house fire

RCMP Sgt. Mike Wicentowich says fires were intentionally set

600 new campsites coming to provincial parks and recreation sites across B.C.

Tourism Minister announced half of the new spots to 13 most popular provincial parks

Raptors beat Bucks 105-99 to move within 1 game of NBA Finals

Leonard scores 35 as Toronto takes 3-2 series lead over Milwaukee

Municipalities protest after B.C. declares marijuana crops ‘farm use’

UBCM president seeks answers in letter to John Horgan government

CMHC defends mortgage stress test changes amid calls for loosening rules

Uninsured borrowers must now show they could service their mortgage if rates rose two per cent

B.C. woman left ‘black and blue’ after being pushed off 40-foot cliff at lake

West Shore RCMP looking for witnesses as investigation continues

Grand Forks woman assaulted in home invasion

The incident took place Wednesday morning

Kootenay youth substance use trending downward: survey

A bi-annual survey distributed to regional schools shows that youth substance use is decreasing

Thunderstorms to bring heavy rain, risk of flash floods in the southern Interior

Ten to 30 millimetres of rain to fall over the early weekend

Unbe-leaf-able: Agassiz man finds more than 200 four-leaf clovers in a month

Walt Hardinge has found more than 219 four-or-more leaf clovers this spring alone

Most Read