Thieves have stolen Ireland's only albino boa constrictor and left the snake's owners devastated.
"If an albino boa constrictor pops up anywhere in Ireland it will be mine. She is 6ft long and is the only one of her kind in Ireland," said Joanna Lynch.
Pet snake Jenga has been with the Lynch family for eight years but thieves, possibly stealing to order, took her from their family home in Duleek, Co Meath, at the weekend.
Her owners fear unless she is properly cared for she will die.
"We just want her back. There will be no questions asked and there is a reward," Joanna said last night.
Her partner Darren Ryan (30) said the theft had left the family, including their son Kai, devastated.
"To take a family pet is the lowest of the low. I wouldn't mind if they took the car radio or something like that but don't take a live animal.
"I know about the amount of care that goes into looking after reptiles. You have got to know what you are doing."
Jenga was in her heated tank in a log cabin in the back garden when she was taken.
"We accidentally had broken the glass in it and hadn't got round to replacing it so we had wood on it to keep her safe.
"The thieves used a hammer to prise off the wood we had put up and they left the hammer behind them. They also went through my car and a number of other cars in the estate," explained Joanna.
Joanna said the theft took place sometime between midnight and 6am last Saturday and the thieves also attempted to take the family's Siberian husky dogs.
"Jenga needs to be kept warm and she was kept at about 30C," Joanna explained.
Garda Sgt Dean Kerins said the theft could have been orchestrated by a gang who had stolen the snake to order.
He said: "She was taken by somebody familiar with handling snakes so she could have been stolen to order possibly for somebody with an interest in them."
Anyone with information should contact gardai or Joanna on 086 337 3327.