TAMPA — A 6-foot-long boa constrictor is recovering after surgery Friday to remove a towel it inadvertently ingested three days earlier. The snake, named Killer, had been eating a rat that got a grip on the towel.

"The towel came with the rat," said veterinarian Julia Shakeri, who performed the surgery at the Tampa BluePearl Veterinary Partners hospital.

Shakeri, along with an anesthetist and an assistant, operated on the 9-year-old snake for about an hour. He was groggy after the surgery, but had a steady heartbeat and was breathing on his own.

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