Florida woman fights to keep her potty-trained, clothes wearing pet alligator

Posted at 1:00 PM, Mar 21, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-21 19:22:58-04

LAKELAND, Fla. — A Florida woman may soon have to say "See you later alligator!" to her pet reptile of 11 years because she doesn't have the required space to keep him.

Mary Thorn, who is known to nurse disabled gators back to health, adopted Rambo and has been taking care of him and bringing him to events to teach others about the reptile, according to the petition.

Thorn said that Rambo is not just docile and sweet, he's potty-trained, responds to 70 commands, and can even ride a 4-wheeler.

Rambo wears clothes not just for entertainment, but to protect his skin because of a rare condition makes him sensitive to light, the petition said.

"Rambo accompanies Mary to special charitable events and she donates 100% of the earnings to organizations like: Shriners, Toys for Tots, schools and police departments," the petition read.

Recently, the 15-year-old gator had a growth spurt that may tear the duo apart.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission requires reptiles that is as big as Rambo to live on properties with at least 2.5 acres of open space. Thorn's home doesn't meet that requirement.

Now, the petition is asking the Florida Wildlife Commission to let Rambo and Thorn stay together.

If they evict the gator, who occasionally shares a bed with thorn, she said it will be a death sentence for her scaly pal who has never lived in the wild and is skittish around other reptiles.

"We do not want to see Rambo removed from his loving home and placed into unknown conditions — especially when he is afraid of outside noises and is very much a member of the family," it said.

It has almost met its goal of 1,500 supporters.