BITE ME! That's what a Troutdale's newest resident "Jake the snake" would like to do to this reporter.
Harkins' Food and Pets, owned since 1965 by Bob Harkin and his son Joe "Tommy Tito" Harkin, is "scaling up" the offerings of their pet section. In addition to pigs, ducks, goats, and dogs, the store now offers a snake and lizard. Bob Harkin says the store will stock more if someone buys them.
"We won't let a single customer slither by!" Tommy Tito Harkin said to the crowd who assembled for the unveiling of the new glass snake tank, dubbed the Snake Tank, on Wednesday afternoon. "These are really great creatures which can be pets or meat."
After the unveiling, Troutdale Miss Teen Chick-fil-A Ashley Dorshaw gave a thrilling speech about her interest in exotic pets.
"Animals are engendered all over the world. Some because of people," said Dorshaw, who is a freshman at Troutdale High. "That's really sad. Some of those animals are snakes and lizards and others are tigers."
The snake and lizard for sale at Harkins' Food and Pets are not themselves endangered. "Jake the Snake" is a common corn snake breed and the lizard (as yet unnamed) is a water dragon, which is native to Australia but has been kept as pets around the world for over 100 years.
The store will also stock packages of one-dozen nymph roaches, available for $10, to feed the snake and lizard if someone were to buy either.
"Or you can buy a box to bring home to your wife!" joked Bob Harkin.
For now, the Harkins say the store will not add any other new pets in coming months, though they are planning to expand their selection of salt licks and will soon begin selling tickets to the annual Thanksgiving Pumpkin Catapult Competition held at Harkin Farm.