Rutherford County deputies help rescue bearded dragon trapped in dashboard

Mar 27, 2020 at 12:59 pm by Lisa Marchesoni

Rutherford County Sheriff's Office

Ana Gutierrez was driving to buy crickets for her pet bearded dragon, Cynder, when she placed the lizard on the dashboard to soak up some sun Thursday, said Rutherford County Sheriff’s Deputy Jared Keith.

“Cynder got scared, jumped on the floorboard and ran up inside the dashboard,” Keith said.

Ana wrote on her Facebook page, “I didn’t want her there (on the floorboard) so I went to grab her, and she got scared and ran up the wall of the car behind the glove box. I panicked and went to grab her before she disappeared, but she was gone.”

She stopped her car in the middle of Blackman Road and put on her hazard lights.

Ana crawled into the passenger seat of her car with her back on the floorboard, her legs on the passenger seat and her arm inside the glove box when she heard a Murfreesboro Police officer ask if she needed help.

He directed her to move the car out of the road.

“I’m scared I’m going to hurt her but somehow I park across the street in someone’s driveway,” Ana wrote.

Keith, who loves reptiles, Deputy Sean White and SRO Ben Baldwin arrived.

“By the time Sean and I got there, she was taking apart the dashboard to get the bearded dragon out,” Keith said.

The deputies helped dismantle the dashboard. 

Ana wrote Cynder clawed at the metal.

 “She’s freaking out,” Ana wrote. “I’m freaking out.”

The deputies tried to keep Ana calm while she spotted Cynder’s tail through a small opening in the glove box. She grabbed her tail, reached her belly and rescued her. 

Cynder had a small cut on her tail. She will be 1 next month.

“I was practically in tears,” Ana wrote. “I put her in her carrier, which she will forever be in when AND if I travel with her again.

Ana said she was “incredibly happy” the deputies helped her.

“I just want to say thank you again for all of their help and bless them for helping me,” Ana wrote on Facebook. “And I hope they tell that story to everyone.” 

Photo: Deputy Sean White secures bearded lizard, Cynder, after he and deputies helped owner Ana Gutierrez rescue the pet.



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