Widow overcomes lifelong phobia of snakes by adopting 9ft Burmese python after feeling ‘instant connection’
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A widow has overcome her lifelong phobia of snakes - by adopting a nine foot long Burmese python. Rosie Kin, 63, was terrified of snakes until her daughter moved in with her last year to keep her company after her husband died.
Rachel had recently rehomed a six foot long ball python for a friend, who also moved in with her, despite Rosie’s protests. But after spending some time with the python, Rosie gradually began to overcome her fear.
So much so, that last month, she adopted Amun-Ra, a nine foot Burmese python, who she rehomed from a reptile centre that was shutting down. Rosie, from High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, said: "A year ago I wouldn’t even step foot into a room with a snake. Now me and Amun-Ra are totally inseparable. I couldn’t imagine life without him."
Rosie lost her husband Robert Kin after he suffered a stroke in January 2022, aged 68. Rachel moved in to support her, but brought with her her pet snake Ruslana - a six foot tall python.
Rosie had been terrified of snakes since she was a child, and originally wasn’t happy with the idea of one living in her house. But she reluctantly agreed, under the conditions that Rachel was not allowed to get her out of her cage when she was at home.
Rosie, a retired nurse, said: "My mother always had a fear and loathing of snakes. She wouldn’t even go to look at them in the zoo, and as a child I felt they weren’t animals that would be very friendly.
"My late husband used to chase me up the garden with slow worms which also didn’t help.”
Rosie said she initially banned her daughter from taking the snake out of its cage while she was home, but then thought she needed ‘to get a grip.’ After a few weeks, Rosie started to interact with Ruslana and talk to her through the glass and the mum-of-three became more comfortable and eventually she overcame her fear of the reptile.
Last month, Rosie agreed to visit a family run reptile centre with Rachel - which was closing down. The pair only went to buy mice for Ruslana while they were there Rosie met Amun-Ra, a nine foot Burmese python who needed rehoming.
Rosie says she felt an instant connection with the reptile that was too strong to ignore, and adopted him there and then. She said: "After educating myself on keeping snakes as pets I have come to understand they are misunderstood and often portrayed in a negative light.
"Ruslana was a good stepping stone to overcoming my fear, and then after meeting Amun-Ra, there was no doubt in my mind I wanted to look after him.
"We connected straight away and we have been inseparable ever since.”
She added that although he relies on her to feed him and make sure he’s okay, she always handles him with two people and its very much “on his terms.”