A woman in Australia has been credited with saving her young daughter from a six-foot python that had found its way inside the girl's room and wrapped itself around the girl's arm.
The mother, Tess Guthrie of New South Wales, was woken up after she heard her cat hissing at the unwelcome intruder early Sunday morning.
"I heard the cat hissing on the bed, which is what woke me up in the first place," Guthrie told Nine News. "I thought it was a dream when I saw the python wrapped around Zara and I didn't think it was real."
Guthrie tried to wrestle the snake away from her daughter; she grabbed the snake and tried to pull the serpent off of her two-year old child, but the snake acted defensively tightened its coil and began to bite the girl several times.
"On the third time [it was biting down on her] I grabbed the snake on the head and I pulled her and the snake apart from each other," Guthrie said, according to the Brisbane Times. "In my head I was just going through this unbelievable terror, and my thought was that it was going to actually kill her at first, because it was wrapped so tight."
Her daughter was taken to a local hospital and treated for the snake bites before being released.
Tex Tillis of Tex's Snake Removals, who was called on to remove the snake, explained that it was not looking for a meal, but rather some place warm.
"Pythons, underneath their bottom lip have a row of sensors which evolution has equipped them with to see the world in infrared. In the dark, baby and mother sleeping in the bed would look like a lump of heat," Tillis told local media.
Local reports indicate that Guthrie did not want the snake destroyed and local wildlife officials released the snake back into the wild.