How To Care For A Shedding Snake
How To Care For A Shedding Snake
Snakes shed all their life in order to be able to grow and when you keep snakes in captivity its important that you know exactly what is going on and that you care for your shedding snake correctly. Please note that snakes that are under going shedding may be temporarily blind for a while and an upset or scared snake may strike out at noises so be sure to keep this in mind.
I do keep poisonous snakes but I have been working with snakes for over thirty years. Be warned that a shedding poisonous snake can be a dangerous snake. Do not keep poisonous snakes unless you know what you are doing and you have the correct state permits. Know that under the best of circumstances a poisonous snake is dangerous and when they are shedding you must use extra care to avoid a nasty and possibly lethal bite.Most people should stick with keeping non poisonous snakes like corn snakes , boas , and pythons. Leave the poisonous species to the professionals.
1. You need to learn the signs that your snake is about to shed. The eyes of a snake that is about to shed will appear cloudy. If you look closely at the snake you will notice that the snakes skin will appear to look off color and the snake will probably go into hiding in its enclosure. It will most likely refuse food you offer at this point but don't worry because your snake will go back to eating once it has finished shedding. You will probably notice that your snake is much more defensive while it is shedding.
2. Due to the fact that the snake is likely to be more defensive while it is shedding it is a good ideal to avoid handling your snake until it finishes the shedding process. Provide your snake with rocks and pieces of driftwood so they will have something to aid them in the shedding process. Be sure during this time to keep your snakes shallow water dish filled and changed so it can soak and help its self in the shedding process.
3. Once your snake has shed its skin take the shed skin out of the snakes enclosure and examine it carefully. Is it a complete skin or are pieces still attached to your snake. If your snake does still have pieces of its skin attaches give the snake another day or two. If pieces of skin are still attached it may be time for a trip to the vet. If you are going to keep a snake or snakes you should find a good local vet that is willing to help you with your snake or snakes. There may be times that you have to take your snake to a vet.
4. Remember a shedding snake needs rough rocks , pieces of driftwood , and a shallow water dish big enough for your snake to get in and soak. If you have a large snake you will of course need a large shallow water dish. Be sure to keep clean fresh water in your snakes dish during the shedding process.
5. Remember that shedding snakes will be defensive and you really should not handle your snake while it is shedding unless it is absolutely necessary. Resist the urge to try to help your snake to shed its skin. If you provide your snake with rocks , pieces of driftwood , and fresh water it should be able to shed its skin on its on. If your snakes old skin gets stuck on its head area and a couple of days have gone by take your snake to the vet.
6. You should always keep a journal on each snake you keep. In this journal you can keep a record of the snakes length , the snakes weight , and you should make a note of what your snake eats and the date. If you have to take your snake to the vet take this journal with you so your vet will have an ideal of exactly what is going on with your snake.
7. Its always important to provide your snake with a place to hide in its enclosure and you should respect its privacy unless it is absolutely necessary to disturb your snake. You should keep in mind that a shedding snake may hide and this is a perfectly normal habit for your snake. Shedding must occur in order for your snake to grow.
Keep in mind that shedding snakes will usually not eat so once you know that your snake is shedding there is really no reason to offer it food until you know that the shedding process is complete.
In general you should just leave your snake along while it is shedding so that you do not stress it out. If your snake was easy to handle before the shedding process started it will probably be the same after the shedding process is complete.
So don't panic when your snake sheds. It may take a week to 10 days for your snake to shed so just leave the snake alone and let it go through the process. This is how your snake grows and in order to grow your snake must shed.
If you have comments or questions about shedding snakes feel free to post them below. And thanks for reading my Hub Page on Shedding Snakes.