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-   -   My friend's snake isn't eating. (http://www.pets.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=76504)

Dracen April 16th, 2011 01:09 PM

My friend's snake isn't eating.
 
I said I'd ask on here about it, because I remember my snake would sometimes go weeks without eating. She's got a 1.5 year old Florida Kingsnake; he's not shedding any time soon (my snake was more hesitant to eat when he was shedding, sometimes) and is fed once a week. Usually he notices the mouse as soon as she opens his cage and tries to grab it right away. He ate fine last week, but today he didn't take the mouse at all and she's put it back in the freezer. Any idea why a snake would stop eating without warning? Admittedly it has only been once, but this is the first time he's done it, she's worried, and I remember it stretched on for a while with mine sometimes.

Thanks :)

pbpatti April 16th, 2011 08:44 PM

I really do not know alot about snakes but one important thing that I recenly learned is that you do not feed your snake in his cage, he should have a separate crate to eat in. The reason for this is the snake thinks that every time you put your hand in the cage you are feeding him and not just being sociable.

That said....she can do Tellington TTouch on the snake. Using different "tools" small artist paint brushes, soft cloths, sheep skin (the furry side), and her fingertips. With the paintbrush she can use either end, with the brush end slowly doing small circles all over the body, with the other end roll it over and under the body of the snake, very gently. Let me know if she tries any of this and how it goes.

I am volunteering at the Humane Society and I have been doing TTouch on a Boa they have there trying to get him to poo....it is so encouraging I got a long exhalation from him on Thursday what a thrill knowing that I may be helping him. patti

kathryn April 16th, 2011 10:55 PM

What is the weather like where you are, and at what temperature is the cage at? What heat sources do you have?

Once a week is a bit much for a kingsnake for being fed... what size mice do they use? Just regular mice? Or fuzzies/hoppers?

Snakes can go MONTHS without eating. I don't feed my snakes from late November until late February/early March. Same with most of my other lizards, I just feed them small amounts here and there every so often...

I have a European Horn Nosed Viper, an Albino Cornsnake, 2 bearded dragons, a veiled chameleon, red bellied toads, a crested gecko, a leopard gecko and a turtle and they are all the same way with going extended period without eating especially during the colder months.. but now that it is spring most snakes should be eating in the Northern Hemisphere.

Dracen April 17th, 2011 04:15 PM

Kathryn - I know how long they can go without eating - my snake went three or so months without anything and he was just fine. He had been eating just fine once a week before this, though - could it be that his eating slowed down with age?

Patti - It is NOT required a snake be fed in a separate cage - that's not true at all. Web pages on it can be found here ([url]http://www.arbreptiles.com/lastword/snakefeeding.shtml[/url]) and here ([url]http://pet-snakes.com/feed-snake-separate-tank[/url]). Most snake experts do not see it as necessary at all and the rational for it can be easily dealt with. Don't feel pressured to feed your snake in a separate cage.

pbpatti April 17th, 2011 07:20 PM

Dracen, thank you for the information about feeding snakes, I really do not have any experience with snakes just going on what I was told, I now have new info that also makes sense to me. If you have alot of snakes it really would not make any sense trying to feed them outside their cages. patti

kathryn April 17th, 2011 09:54 PM

[QUOTE=Dracen;1004455]Kathryn - I know how long they can go without eating - my snake went three or so months without anything and he was just fine. He had been eating just fine once a week before this, though - could it be that his eating slowed down with age?

Patti - It is NOT required a snake be fed in a separate cage - that's not true at all. Web pages on it can be found here ([url]http://www.arbreptiles.com/lastword/snakefeeding.shtml[/url]) and here ([url]http://pet-snakes.com/feed-snake-separate-tank[/url]). Most snake experts do not see it as necessary at all and the rational for it can be easily dealt with. Don't feel pressured to feed your snake in a separate cage.[/QUOTE]

Not sure about the age thing, I haven't heard either way. If he was slowing down he probably would have started that a while ago.

As for the separate cage thing, it depends on the snake & the type of bedding used & if you are feeding live or frozen. The main reason you would take a snake out and use a different container would be either A. When the snake strikes he/she has a history of accidentally ingesting the substrate or B. If the snake has territorial issues with you putting your hand in the tank and the snake keeps striking at you.

Simple answer? He probably wasn't hungry. I'd try again in a few days and only start to worry if 3-4 weeks pass and no luck.

Dracen April 20th, 2011 08:15 PM

@ Patti: You're welcome :) We're all here to learn!

Update: Turns out the snake is sick - lethargic and with breathing problems, to the point where my friend has to continually make sure her (she found out her snake was female) head stays out of her water dish. Animals tend not to eat when they're sick, so that at least gives us a reason why she didn't eat...now we just have to hope she's okay :(

Criosphynx April 20th, 2011 08:40 PM

assumming the husbandry is fine, I would chalk it up to the snake hitting sexual maturity and this being breeding season for colubrids.

those who are not familiar with that type of kingsnake...they will eat themselves into obesity and refusing food is NOT normal save for the circumstance I just mentioned. ;) :)

A boa, ball python or other boid not wanting to eat for periods is normal, its not normal for a kingsnake, cornsnake or most other colubrids, save for brumation and breeding :)


[QUOTE]Most snake experts do not see it as necessary at all and the rational for it can be easily dealt with. Don't feel pressured to feed your snake in a separate cage. [/QUOTE]

ditto this btw. :)


edit, missed the last post som'how?? Needs to see a vet and have husbandry assessed. Respirtory problems are from being too cold.

Dracen April 20th, 2011 08:44 PM

Criosphynx: That's all good to know, thanks :) We have discovered subsequently that her snake is quite ill. She's been given some advice (make the tank warmer, clean it out completely, etc.), and will take her to the vet tomorrow (the place near her specialises in reptiles, so it's the best option over an emergency clinic). Hopefully it's nothing serious :/ Or at least something treatable.

kathryn April 20th, 2011 10:19 PM

[QUOTE=Dracen;1005290]Criosphynx: That's all good to know, thanks :) We have discovered subsequently that her snake is quite ill. She's been given some advice (make the tank warmer, clean it out completely, etc.), and will take her to the vet tomorrow (the place near her specialises in reptiles, so it's the best option over an emergency clinic). Hopefully it's nothing serious :/ Or at least something treatable.[/QUOTE]

If you are okay with needles, Amikacin works good for many illnesses in snakes. You have to inject it under their scales though using a small gauge needle. It's really expensive, but it works.

Shaykeija April 20th, 2011 10:22 PM

Aww poor thing, I quite like snakes of all sizes. I hope it gets better soon

FurryMom April 23rd, 2011 02:13 PM

I hope your friends snake is able to make a recovery!! :pray:

Dracen April 23rd, 2011 06:30 PM

I'm sorry to say that the snake died yesterday in my friend's hands :( Apparently, it was not a peaceful death. Her snake is being replaced for free from the place she bought it, but it's still a sad loss for her.


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