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Old 07-29-2008
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Default Need a little help with snakes

Are any of you guys knowledgeable at all about snakes? My shelter came into the possession of two snakes today. One is a red tailed boa constrictor (about 36 inches long), the other is a python, not sure what type but I think its a ball python (about 24 inches long). The snakes came to us together in one tank, and the owner came in and signed them over today. They did not bring any food or equipment other than the tank (20 gallon) and what bedding was in the tank, a couple of branches and a water bowl.

I placed the tank partially over a heating pad set on the lowest setting, so it warms about 1/3 of the floor space. So far the boa is digging it, he went to it within a few minutes and stayed there all day. The python would rather lay under the water bowl, which is off the heating pad.

I have no idea what to do with these guys. I don't even know how to tell if they are healthy! They look pretty, but were cold and sluggish when they came in. No idea if this is normal, lol. The owner had no idea when they had last eaten, because she said they have changed hands several times in the last month. The last time she knows for sure that they ate was about a month ago. There were three pieces of feces in the tank.

I have emailed the DFW Herpological Society to see about getting them to rescue, and to ask for advice on caring for them in the meantime. I'm waiting on responses from a few contacts I have from other local animal controls, as well. I know the tank is probably much too small for two snakes, so I'm looking into finding another one, or a bigger one.

We just VERY rarely get snakes into our shelter. I don't really have any experience with them. If anyone has any advice on what my priority needs to be for these guys (feed them?) I would really, really appreciate your input!

Thanks =) Now I'm off to google.com, and to learn what I can!
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Old 07-29-2008
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Call me tomorrow, I have a snake guy about a block from my shelter, and he will probably take them.
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Old 07-29-2008
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oh thank god, lol

and thank you!
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Old 07-29-2008
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I just sent you a PM with his contact info.
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Old 07-30-2008
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Oh this brings back memories.. The heating pad was definatley a good idea. When they are cold they do not eat.
The feeding is the horror for me. (Cringe) I hate it when they only eat live bait. I remember the first time I had to stun a rat for a pyton. Oh god! I am a wimp..
Getting to old you are a hero, We have a couple of snake guys that take them off of our hands as well.
good luck mcnizzle.

Leah
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Old 07-30-2008
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My snake guy was the chair of our advisory board for several years. Iíve been over to his house at feeding time, and yes, it can be disgusting. He used to have 30+ snakes, but he is cutting back now. Some would only eat rats, some would only eat mice, most preferred alive, but there were a few that preferred dead. He has cards on each cage indicating what each snake prefers, and the last time it ate.

He had 2 albino pythons, and I was at his house before he cleaned the cages once, and it looked like his German Shepherd had dropped a load in the cage.
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Old 07-30-2008
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We've had great luck with the Plano Living Material Center helping us place reptiles in the past. You might give them a call too.
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Old 08-01-2008
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thanks everyone! Getting too old, your guy came and got the snakes from us. Whoo hoo!
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Old 08-01-2008
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Oh I get by with a little help from my friends,
Mm I'm gonna try with a little help from my friends,
Oh I get high with a little help from my friends,
Yes I get by with a little help from my friends.
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Old 08-03-2008
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In our shelter we have an exotics department and they have the knowledge and ability to keep snakes, lizards, turtles and etc. I own a snake and lizard myself so in the field I am usually ok with any snake calls. I'm glad you were able to give them to someone who has the means to care for them!
Oh and BHCZ1, my snake only eats live food and she will not eat them if I stun them...she seriously is into hunting the rats down...so I am fortunatee to not have to wack the rats!
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