A 300-pound alligator made quite the splash this week in a central Florida family's swimming pool.
The 9-foot beast broke through patio screen netting to take a dip at the Lakeland home on Tuesday. But it's impromptu bath came to a sudden end when homeowner Craig Lear let his family's three cats out onto the patio and saw bubbles in the water.
At first, he thought a golf ball from the neighboring course had fallen in. Then he spotted the menacing-looking reptile.
Lear and his wife Laura, who was looking after their 6-month-old son, called the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Alligator trapper Scot Barbon arrived and spent an hour trying to bring the animal under control.
"He used a lasso effect, wrapped him up and it was pretty scary," Laura Lear told Bay News 9. "At one point, waves were rocking in the pool from the gator thrashing around but then the trapper tired him out and hauled him out the door."
Barbon told ABC News the creature was later euthanized and processed for its meat and hide. Luckily, the couple's young son didn't have a clue what happened.
"Oh yes, I don't think he realizes the magnitude of what he just experienced," Laura Lear said.