An RSPCA inspector rushed to the scene when she received a report that a giant and possibly dangerous spider was on the loose in a family home.
She steeled herself to tackle the tarantula as she made her way to Alresford in Hampshire on Thursday July 20.
However, it appeared a child was to blame for the “spider” scare, which caused his mother quite a fright.
RSPCA inspector Nikki Denham said: ““The caller had stated there was a tarantula the size of her hand in the understairs cupboard.
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“She had left it in there not touching it and called us for assistance.
“I turned up with gloves and nets to confine the creature and the woman left me to it, shutting doors around me to prevent its escape.
“It was dark under the stairs but I could see legs behind a vacuum cleaner that certainly were tarantula size, however as I shone light in I could see that it was in fact a toy plastic tarantula.
“After telling the woman this it was presented to her young son who confirmed with an angelic innocent face that it was his.
“The poor caller was obviously embarrassed but it won’t be the first or last call we’ll have like that I’m sure.”
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