Escaped albino cobra recaptured in Los Angeles suburb

LOS ANGELES Thu Sep 4, 2014 7:56pm EDT

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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Animal control officers on Thursday recaptured an albino cobra that mysteriously got loose in a Los Angeles suburb, leaving residents jumpy after the venomous reptile bit a dog earlier this week, authorities said.

Officials at the Los Angeles County Department of Animal Care and Control confirmed that the snake had been caught but said he was unable to immediately provide more details.

A brief statement posted online by the police department in Thousand Oaks, the community north of Los Angeles where the cobra attacked a dog on Monday, said the snake was found near where it had last been seen.

The dog was treated at a veterinarian hospital for the snake bite to its neck and has since recovered.

Officials said it was unclear who might have owned the cobra, which is native to parts of Asia and illegal to possess in California without a permit.

The dog's owner took photographs of the snake and alerted authorities.

Although residents of the Southern California community have experience with rattlesnakes, the presence of a white-colored cobra several feet long in their midst had left some people on edge.

"People are a little more freaked out because obviously cobras don't live in this area, but it's just as dangerous as any of the rattlesnakes that we have living in this area," animal control officer Alfred Aguirre said.

(Reporting by Steve Gorman and Alex Dobuzinskis; Writing by Steve Gorman; Editing by Sandra Maler)

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