Grey rat snake problem

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Grey rat snake problem

Postby Widget » Thu Oct 15, 2009 9:47 am

Hi all,

We are baby-sitting a 4-month-ish old Grey Rat snake for a time, but she doesn't want to eat and on monday we got someone to come and take a look. He injected her with something that he says is like a boost cocktail with some anti-biotics and an appetite enhancers etc.in it. Well, she still isn't eating. We noticed a sudden increase in girth about 4cm behind her neck and I think it's an impacted digestive tract, but so close to her neck? If we put her in lukewarm water, she just lies still and when she tries to swim, she struggles, because of the buoyancy of that swollen strech, it pushes her neck under and she struggles to keep her head above water.

Oh, the reptile guy also suggested a little castor oil to remove the blockage..? Is that safe for snakes?

Also, the guy we rescued her from, tried to feed her way-too-big rat pinks (He 'graciously' provided one in a cigarette box when we went to fetch her) :smt018
and that one was almost three times her head's girth! He said she ate the last time, but the time before that she regurged. He also took her home for the sep holidays and after that she has not eaten. We also refurnished her home and gave her a hide to crawl in. She looks 100% healthy, exept for the swollen part.

O yes, and her tongue looks weird to me. My husband says it's normal, but I don't know.. It doesn't flick up and down when she flicks it ou and also looks to me like it doesn't fork..?

Does anyone have any ideas concerning her lack of appetite and swollen body?

I'm really falling in love with her and would hate to see her suffer! :smt022
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Re: Grey rat snake problem

Postby Bushviper » Thu Oct 15, 2009 12:41 pm

Any rodent placed in a cigarette packet is toxic and will kill the snake. Nicotine was used to euthanase snakes in days gone by.

That swelling is too high up to be any blockage of the digestive tract like fur or similar product. It is more than likely some foreign object that she swallowed like bark chips or something like that.

Have a vet take a look and see if it can be palpated and or expressed out.

Liquid parrafin would be safe for snakes but now getting that lump all the way through the digestive tract will probably kill it.

If the worst happens and the snake dies please have it cut open so that everyone can be informed what it was.
It is easier to ask for forgiveness than permission.

Those who are afraid to ask are ashamed of learning.
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Re: Grey rat snake problem

Postby Widget » Thu Oct 15, 2009 1:12 pm

Eish! The vet guy said it was probably not even that bad of a thing.. And the problem is, we don't know the history of the snake before we got her.. so that's a huge issue. We don't even know if the guy told us the truth... like, maybe he dropped her at one stage..?

Well, hopefully we can deliver her to the breeder in benoni this weekend. As I said, we're only baby-sitting. I will ask him to keep me informed, though.

Thanx for your reply!
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Re: Grey rat snake problem

Postby Widget » Fri Oct 16, 2009 2:26 pm

Okay this is the Widget's hubby. So Merideth has now pooped and the poop looks healthy(as things go). She is very lively and quite aware of her surroundings. She seems to like me more than my wife(not sure how she discern between us) Her pupils also has disticnct difference in size. Forinstance when she's sleeping it's rather small. It's bigger when she's awake.
She still hasn't eaten but we will try again next week Monday.
She really is one of the cuted things ever!!!
Later...
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Re: Grey rat snake problem

Postby Widget » Thu Jan 21, 2010 8:08 am

Hey everyone

Sorry for being so distant. We've really been quite busy. Here's a quick update on or little Grey. She finally started to eat about 2weeks after our last post. We had to force feed her. For those of you that think it's dificult and scary - it really isn't. The worst part is liuqidasing the pinkies(baby mice). We did ours in a normal blender. Once that was done we used 3 syringes to suck up the liuqid. The actual feeding part was easy. We took a short piece of tube about 5mm think and popped it over the nozzle of one of the syringes. The other end was placed in Meridith's mouth and we gently started squeezing the liuqid into her. She was upset after that for a day or two but healthy looking still.
And then it happened...the next week we offered her a live pinkie(the pinkie was only about 2cm in size...bleh) BUT SHE ATE IT UP! And she didn't through up or anything. We still have 2 syringes in the frige with the liuqidised pinkies in. I'll probably trough it out as soon as possiple(for me it's still gross).
Meridith has now had 5 successfull feedings including a rat pinkie last week. They'll all be going on fuzzies tomorrow.
If anyone ever has a problem like we did - take note: There were so many people offering advise and reasons. In the end only 1 thing was sure - she had placed herself on a diet. The moment the diet was over she ate. But seriously we think she may have wanted to hybernate for some reason. But like I said - she's doing great. I'll upload some photos as soon as possible.
Thanks for all the advise and for such an awesome forum. It's people like you people that make things easier for people like me!!

Regards

Team Widget
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Re: Grey rat snake problem

Postby Groenslang » Thu Jan 21, 2010 8:18 am

Great to hear that your animal is eating! Is it still only a temporary resident? ;)

Having animals that don't feed is a cr@p experience, Ive got a corn that does it, but he always eventually eats again! (After I rant ans rave on this forum)

Good luck with your baba! :)
The future depends on what we do in the present. - Mahatma Gandhi

Arno Davies
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Re: Grey rat snake problem

Postby Widget » Mon Jan 25, 2010 10:27 pm

Nope...she's a perminent part of the family now. And we love her. I still remember the 1st feeding. She almost struck at me after eating! That was scary. It seems snakes don't like being disturbed after eating. I have to because I feed mine outside their cage. But boy do they get angry and anxious.
Still it beats having a cat or a dog or even a bird. I just wish I can upload some picks soon so every1 can see how cute they are.
Anyway....later
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Re: Grey rat snake problem

Postby mtmccutcheon » Sun Feb 07, 2010 12:49 pm

Hi Widget,

i noticed you said you are force feeding your snake, please dont, once you start force feeding your snake the snake's natural behaviour starts to change, soon you will be force feeding your snake till adult hood, shame, its stressful for the little fella. i know you are trying your best to keep him alive, but there are other options.
1st option: if you have alot of money, take the snake to a VET. But trust me, you are going to pay.

2nd option: if you don’t have money and you want to do what is best for the snake, buy a heating pad (R30) and place a news paper over it and make sure the snake cannot slither under the news paper, even if you have to tape the news paper down over the heating pad, this is only so that the snake does not come in direct contact with the heating pad. Then, go to your closest snake park and buy a 1.5mm medicine feeding tube and a 5mm syringe. Go to the closest grocery store and buy plain yogurt, using the thin feeding tube – feed 5ml yogurt to the snake, and repeat once every week, until the snake starts to eat buy it self, once it starts eating it will carry on eating normally. (using the very thin feeding tube is less traumatizing to the snake, its easier to use, as well as its been designed not to harm/scratch the inner fleshy parts of the snake. The plain yogurt on the other hand is a natural probiotic and encourages eating, ive saved many a snake from sick minded people with bad hands and no respect to snakes from certain death, normally i would assess the snake for 2-3 weeks, then decide whether or not to flagyl the snakes and follow up with 3 weeks of plain yogurt, it works everytime (ive had many snake handlers tell me my snakes are in perfect condition, and they even ask me what is my secret recipe!!!!!), but you must increase a small section of the cage to 28’C to max 30’C
http://www.herpcenter.com/water-dragons/872-yogurt.html
http://www.reptileinsider.com/showthread.php?t=18977
http://www.reptileuv.com/nutribac-df-pr ... ptiles.php

3rd – ya, you thought there was only 2 option, but there is a third, after you have got some bacteria into your snake (probiotic) and she/ starts to move around alot, but yet still wont eat defrosted pinkies, you should try offering live pinkies, some snakes are funny, and so are some people, you might get some lip from certain animal rights activists that you feed your snake live pinkies, but hey, its the snake you are worried about isn’t it, if the snake prefers to eat live pray, then that’s the snakes choice i would say..... anyways, its just an option........ ;-)
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Re: Grey rat snake problem

Postby mtmccutcheon » Sun Feb 07, 2010 1:00 pm

Mouth Rot
When a snake’s throat and lung become infected by bacteria or fungi, it is called mouth rot. Symptoms include red, inflamed gums, refusal to eat, frequent opening of the mouth, and the formation of a whitish exudate in the mouth. If your snake has mouth rot, place him in a hospital tank and raise the temperature to about 88°F with a cooler spot of about 80°F. A visit to the veterinarian should follow soon after.

Pneumonia
Pneumonia, an infection of a snake’s respiratory tract, is one of the most dangerous snake ailments. Since corn snakes have only one functioning lung, an infection can quickly be fatal. Symptoms of pneumonia include heavy breathing, frequent hissing, frequent opening of the mouth, and excessive mucus or saliva discharge. If you think your snake is suffering from pneumonia, he should see the veterinarian right away.
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Re: Grey rat snake problem

Postby mtmccutcheon » Sun Feb 07, 2010 1:26 pm

Antibiotics (given to help fight infection)

enrofloxacin (baytril) (most reptile handlers use this form). A quinolone compound that appears to be safe and effective in reptiles. May be used IM, SQ and PO at a dose of 5mg/Kg/Day for 7-21 days (routine). - be used IM, SQ and PO at a dose of 10mg/Kg/Day for 7-21 days (Resistant) ......May be diluted with saline since the concentrated form (2,27%) may be irritating.

Note: if you are going to give any medicine to any animal, strictly keep to the rules, make sure you have an accurate converter program to convert mass to ml etc, as well as a good scale to measure weight of the species examined, these dosages have been approved by veterinary practices and should be adhered to without compromise, and please don’t give to dogs or humans.
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Re: Grey rat snake problem

Postby mtmccutcheon » Sun Feb 07, 2010 1:28 pm

oh yes, about those pictures of the snake, load the picture as your profile picture.... ya, internet maklik
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Re: Grey rat snake problem

Postby insaniac » Mon Feb 08, 2010 11:12 am

Dude, ( mtmccutcheon )

Dunno if you noticed in their last post, but the snake started eating after only 1 try with force feeding...

If done right, force feeding should pose no problem.

Just thought I'd let you know...
I may be schizophrenic, but at least I have each other...
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Re: Grey rat snake problem

Postby mtmccutcheon » Fri Feb 19, 2010 7:09 pm

insaniac, if there is a clown under your bed, i am sure you should not be giving others advice, go see a shrink.
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Re: Grey rat snake problem

Postby Widget » Thu Mar 11, 2010 11:28 am

Hey all. Thank you for all the advise. Sorry for the late reply. We thought the little grey was doing okay...untill now.
1st things first: I don't like the idea of force feeding, but if done right it may save the snake. We liquidized 3 pinkies and force fed 10ml. The next week our little grey ate on her own was looking really healthy.
2nd: From the start there were 3 problems: 1) The girth issue - that's gone now. 2) She wasn't eating - she eats at the moment, but not as often as I would like. By that I mean she should be eating every 3-5 days. She eats ever 2 weeks. 3) Green slime exctiment - that's been with us from the paricite flush. I rarely notice, but I did this morning. She ate a really really small pinky on Sunday 7th of March(about 2cm) I tried to feed her again this morning(same size) she's not interested. The cage temp is consistantly kept at between 26°c - 29°c. The humidity is always between 55% & 70%. The cage is roomy, lots of plants. Big water dish with fresh water every 3 days.
It's the green slime that has me worried now. Should I be? She also hasn't grown at all from the tiem we got her. Do Grey Rat Snakes just take long to grow?
Thanks again.
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Re: Grey rat snake problem

Postby rolandslf » Thu Mar 11, 2010 12:47 pm

Widget, I posted something on your other Grey Rat Thread.
It is better to be Pissed Off than Pissed On.
Roland Friskin
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