NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — It’s the stuff urban legends are made of.

A Staten Island man got quite the shock after a snake showed up in his toilet.

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Allen Shepard was brushing his teeth in his Granitville apartment around 6:30 a.m. Tuesday when he looked down at the bowl saw a California Kingsnake staring back at him.

Shepard told the Staten Island Advance he grabbed a bottle of Clorox Greenworks and began spraying the snake but that wasn’t enough to deter his unwelcomed guest.

He ended up calling building superintendent Karen Genco who didn’t buy his story.

“I didn’t believe him at first, I thought he was joking, but it was for real,” Genco told 1010 WINS. “It was like a scene out of a cartoon, it was hysterical.”

Genco then called a plumber to wrestle the 4-foot-long snake out of the bowl.

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“I grabbed the piece that was sticking out and I pulled on him gently, and he wasn’t going nowhere,” Kenneth Rosenthal, of 1-800 CLOGGED Response Service Group, said. “I pulled a little more, and I kept a steady pull on him, and it kept coming out. I said, ‘When is this thing going to end?’ I already had about 2.5 feet of him out.”

The tug-of-war between man and snake lasted about 30 minutes.

“After a little struggle trying to get him out he was quite unhappy and looking to bite,” Genco said.

Rosenthal was able to safely get the snake into a cooler before a neighbor reportedly volunteered to bring the reptile to a sanctuary in Manhattan.

Genco believes the snake came from within the apartment building.

“What I’m being told is that it came from somewhere within the sewer line so it had to come from somewhere within the complex,” Genco said.

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“You can’t make this stuff up,” Rosenthal said of the experience. “It was a very exciting morning, we’ve never really had to deal with anything like that before.”