Need help, i think my boa is sick

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Need help, i think my boa is sick

Postby Roann » Thu Dec 20, 2012 10:26 pm

Hi,

I think my red tail boa has some sort of muscle sickness,
He is just over a year old and eats like a monster, I feed him
live mice every week and he has no trouble constructing an
swallowing the mouse ad he also has no trouble shedding.
But when I handle him he feels stiff. If any one can pleas
help me determine the cause of this, ad if it is treatable?
Roann
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Re: Need help, i think my boa is sick

Postby Colinh » Fri Dec 21, 2012 8:02 am

Looking at the symptoms and what I saw with my own boa, it is IBD and it is not cureable. It is apparently caused by mite and even Bao's in the wild get it. It will affect your Bao to the extend that he will not be able to eat at all. In my view (this is what I did) I had mine uthenased by a vet as there is nothing that can be done. Sorry to give you bad news just before Christmas..PS please do not keep other Boa's in that cage as it is contageous.
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Re: Need help, i think my boa is sick

Postby Roann » Fri Dec 21, 2012 11:45 am

Wen I cot him he had mites but after a month of treatment the mites
were completely gone, and fore that month I kept him in a Ice cream tube
so there are no mites in his cage
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Re: Need help, i think my boa is sick

Postby Unforgiven » Fri Dec 21, 2012 11:58 am

Roann, have you ever held another yearling+ boa?

What you describe to me sounds quite normal. It just sounds like your boa has good muscle tone and is resisting you in that he does not want to do what you want him to do.

Perhaqps explain what the stifness is and how it happens? When a boa is stressed or any snake, they tense up a little, could this be the stifness you are referring to?
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Re: Need help, i think my boa is sick

Postby Roann » Sat Dec 22, 2012 4:11 pm

I have handled other boa's before. It's possible that it can be stress because, I handle him a lott
In order to exercise his muscles. With all the other boa's I have handled my is the only one that
struggles to clime up his own body, when held by the tail, also when I turn him on he's back
he dos not right him self immediately
Roann
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Re: Need help, i think my boa is sick

Postby Bushviper » Sat Dec 22, 2012 8:45 pm

I would suggest you stop handling him or trying to exercise his muscles. Boas do not gym in the wild.

I suspect you have damaged him and he could have brain damage. Take him to a decent vet. I would suggest Onderstepoort or Dr Peck on Atterbury road.
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Re: Need help, i think my boa is sick

Postby Roann » Sat Dec 22, 2012 9:49 pm

Tanks a lot, I will do so as soon as possible. If you have time can you pleas pm me the address of
Dr Peck will appreciate it a lot

Tanks again and have a grate Christmas
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Re: Need help, i think my boa is sick

Postby Roann » Sun Dec 23, 2012 7:54 am

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Re: Need help, i think my boa is sick

Postby Bushviper » Sun Dec 23, 2012 1:40 pm

Atterbury Bird & Animal Hospital

ADDRESS
494 Atterbury Road
Menlo Park
Pretoria

Tel:(012) 348 5712 / 5714
Emergency Tel: (012) 348-5712/4
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Re: Need help, i think my boa is sick

Postby Warren Klein » Mon Dec 24, 2012 8:32 am

Roann, from your 1st description, the behavior seems normal as unforgiven explained. But I would be concerned when you say your boa does not right it's self immediately when turned on its back. IBD affects the central nervous system which causes the animals to star gaze and loose the reflex to right themselves when turned on their backs. In boas IBD also affects the GI track which often causes regurgitation and diarrhea as a symptom.
Colinh, IBD is not caused by mites but is thought to be spread by them to other snakes in a collection. I would not be so fast to advise people to have their snakes euthanized before more obvious symptoms developed and the animal has at least been seen by a vet with knowledge of IBD. Did you ever have your boa biopsied to confirm that it did in fact have IBD after you had it euthanized as this is the only way to confirm and know for sure??

If there is good reason to believe the boa does have IBD, it should be euthanized and taken for a biopsy of the brain, liver and other organs to confirm the presence on Inclusion bodies in the tissue of the snake. NB- the body of the suspected infected snake must be fresh and not be frozen prior to a biopsy as this can destroy the samples. Currently there is no cure for IBD and euthanasia is the only option.

I agree with Colinh, that if the boa is confirmed to be infected with IBD it's cage should be destroyed preferably burnt so it could never be used to house other herps again and spread the virus further.

Hopefully this is not the case and your boa is fine but I would take all precaution as there are some confirmed cases of IBD floating around in boids in SA. The more we all know about this terrible virus the better we can prevent the spread. I agree with BV that a trip to the vet is the 1st step as well as keeping the snake separate from any others.

Hope this helps
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Re: Need help, i think my boa is sick

Postby Roann » Mon Dec 24, 2012 7:29 pm

Thank a lott I will take him to the vet, in the new year. Luckily he is still eats and defecates perfectly,

Tanks for all the feedback. Will keep you posted
And
Have a grate christmas and a festive new year
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Re: Need help, i think my boa is sick

Postby Snakesitter » Mon Dec 24, 2012 10:30 pm

Don't rush to a judgment of IBD. There are other conditions that can also cause balance and position issues, such as advanced RIs.

A definitive diagnosis of IBD can only be made by a very few specialists in the industry. Garner at ZooPath or Jacobson at the University of Florida are your best bets.

To be safe, however -- just in case this is caused by an illness of any type rather than physical damage -- keep him on strict quarantine. Handle him last, and disinfect both yourself and all tools before moving between snakes/enclosures.

If worst comes to worst and he does have IBD, contact the author of the recent study on that disease before doing anything drastic. As I recall they were looking for more specimens infected with IBD. While it would be a tragedy, at least if he goes to that study he plays a role in helping solve this disease, rather than just being another random victim.

Best of luck to you and him.
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Re: Need help, i think my boa is sick

Postby Snakesitter » Fri Dec 28, 2012 10:49 pm

Roann, any more news?
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Re: Need help, i think my boa is sick

Postby Roann » Sat Feb 23, 2013 9:11 pm

Hi, some feedbake on my boa he is a lot better. I turns out a mous bit through the cable of the heatpad, I only discovered it when I changed his substrat. Can not believe 'n whas so stuped :smt021 but lukely tere are no permenant scars. After a month he's muscles whas a lot better.
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Re: Need help, i think my boa is sick

Postby leonthemenace » Sun Feb 24, 2013 10:59 am

Word of advise, never leave live food running around any enclosure unsupervised. That bite on the heat cable could have been a bite to your boas spine... For safety sake try and get him onto thawed food.
If you're not fast......you're food!!
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