Dumeril boa feeding problem

Dumeril boa feeding problem

Postby dirkeberle » Wed Jul 16, 2008 5:59 pm

HI,
I have a 80cm long Dumeril's boa, she is about five months old. I experience problems feeding her. She has eaten two dead medium sized rats before that I placed in front of her hideout in the evenings. Lately though, she refuses to eat. When I place a rat in the enclosure she becomes interested and slowly approaches the dead rodent, then smelling on it but then she leaves the rat and is not interested anymore, even if I leave the rat in the enclosure overnight. What can be the problem? The boa is looking well fed, she is not busy shedding and all my cage requirements are there, so I don't know why?

I have tried live mice and rats, but that freaks her out completely and she begins to make defensive strikes at the live rodents! I am a bit confused about that! Especially that she has eaten two dead rats of the same size before! She hasn't eaten now for probably 3 weeks and I am getting worried. Is this a common phenomenon with these boas or would this be an exception? The substrate I use is corn cob and she likes it and often she burrows in the substrate, but even then she doesn't want to eat!

Can anybody please give me some advice?

Dirk
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Re: Dumeril boa feeding problem

Postby Mitton » Wed Jul 16, 2008 7:11 pm

When last did your female poop? I would not feed mine on corn cob, I would not even keep mine on corn cob. The chances are there that she might be blocked from swollowing corn cob while eating, so check when last she pooped 1st.

If she pooped recently then I would not worry too much, if the cage setup is right then it might just be that she is not in the mood to eat. I have found my Dumeril stop eating for a while during winter.

My male has not eaten in about 2 months but this could also be that he is in mating mode at the moment.

Both mine stopped eating for more than a month last year during winter as well, they were then about the same size as yours but then one day just started eating again.

I would suggest taking out the corn cob and using something else as a substrate, you can never be too carefull. I use astro turf and it works very well.
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Re: Dumeril boa feeding problem

Postby froot » Thu Jul 17, 2008 12:30 pm

Same thing with my Dumerils, during winter, every month I briefly offer them food and if they don't respond with enough enthusiasm I leave them for another month. Last year my female went on hunger strike for 6 months and boy did she make up for it after that! Keep an eye out for health related symptoms, otherwise don't worry, they'll soon try take your hand off.
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Re: Dumeril boa feeding problem

Postby ekim » Thu Jul 17, 2008 3:27 pm

Hi agree with froot both my Dumerils rarely eat in winter, especially when its this cold.
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Re: Dumeril boa feeding problem

Postby Snakes4Africa » Thu Jul 17, 2008 7:12 pm

All the comments are reasonable. I breed Dumerils, and find that they do go off their food in winter. Don't panic. I don't think there is a problem with your substrate but I personally don't use it as it tends to go mouldy in a cage that is set up correctly for Dumerils ie humid and warm. I also don't like astroturf as it is non-absorbant and the snakes tend to lie in their own faeces if you don't clean immediately. Just keep on offering whatever she has been eating, she will eventually eat again.
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Re: Dumeril boa feeding problem

Postby dirkeberle » Thu Jul 17, 2008 8:11 pm

Thanks guys for all the advice! Ok, I will try feeding her when it is warmer again. But she hasn't defecated since I got her, and that's after eating two rats (I have had her for about a month and a half)! She only left two small white urate excretions, but not the normal black faeces that go along with that normally. Should I be worried? If corn cob is not good, what other absorbent substrate can I use? Newspaper doesn't look too great and astro turf is unhyhienic...
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Re: Dumeril boa feeding problem

Postby Fooble » Thu Jul 17, 2008 8:23 pm

Ever Tried using Eucalyptus Mulch?
it's pretty nice, looks great and is pretty cheap.

http://www.coping.org/intervention/sensory/014_12.jpg

excuse the picture found it online but thats the stuff
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Re: Dumeril boa feeding problem

Postby dirkeberle » Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:05 pm

Isn't Eucalyptus mulch unsuitable due to the fact that Eucalyptus have a high content in volatile oils (that's why they burn so well!)? I don't know but I will have a look at that.....
I actually like corncob because it looks good and it absorbs the poo nicely, so no smell!
Anyways, thanks for the advice!
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Re: Dumeril boa feeding problem

Postby Fooble » Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:11 pm

Mm not that i know of,

i know that http://www.creaturesandcritterscaptiveb ... index.html
use it in there store and a big reptile retailer in durban so it cant be harmful i've kept my snake on it for the last couple months
no problems.
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Re: Dumeril boa feeding problem

Postby dirkeberle » Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:17 pm

Oh, ok. If they all use it, then it can't be bad, otherwise they would have picked up something by now. I just thought so because one isn't also supposed to use cedar shavings because they also contain some sort of toxic oils.

Do you know where I can buy the stuff here in Gauteng?
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Re: Dumeril boa feeding problem

Postby froot » Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:20 pm

You can buy it at nurseries. Eucalyptus mulch has been discussed in depth on the board, have a look around. Lets not stray off topic.
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Re: Dumeril boa feeding problem

Postby insaniac » Mon Jul 21, 2008 9:24 am

Hey man, I was also very distressed when my female stopped eating, so much so that I actually took her to a friend of mines pet shop so he could try...

My male is still eating strongly every week, hence my innitial confusion...

It's my understanding that these pythons tend to go off of food at winter time but it's so far shown no ill effect on her as she is still just as fat as she was 2 months ago.

She has been showing a bit more of an interest in food lately but no chowing so far...

Will let u know when she does.
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Re: Dumeril boa feeding problem

Postby jagarcia14 » Sat Jun 01, 2013 4:07 am

OK, it's 7 months for me.

The body tone looks fine; I haven't been weighing the snake so I don't know about weight loss.

A couple weeks ago I took it to a vet who treats reptiles, but I'm not sure they are experts. No sign of of infection, breathing fine. The vet gave it an antibiotic and an appetite enhancer; I followed up with two more treatments each two days apart. Still not interested in eating.

I know about them going off food, but 7 months seems extreme. When should I try force feeding?
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