View Full Version : Feeding: How long is to long? Prey size

Feeding: How long is to long? Prey size

12-14-2012, 02:48 AM
Hello everyone. My first snake Izaya who is around a year old has been having some feeding trouble lately.

Before I would feed him in his feeding tub and all would be well. He would rub his face on it, drink the water off it and eat. He's grown a lot since then (i got him this summer) and now he's more concerned with getting out of his feeding tub then eating.

I've tried zombie dancing, head squishing, leaving him in the tub for some time, and leaving him and the FT mouse in the cage for a whole day and sometimes it works but because of his pickiness lately he's been only eating one every week and a half. Now it's only been two weeks since I last got him to eat but when should I start to worry?

also could it be the size? I recently move him up to adult mice. he's eaten them successfully once or twice before but I've thrown away more then he has eaten.

Heres a picture of him next to the size i'm feeding him. Is it ok?

12-14-2012, 03:45 AM
Sorry, the picture hasn't worked.

However if he was eating reliably on the smaller mice, then I'd go back to them for a while and re-establish his eating routine. A year old is quite young for them to be eating adult mice, so I doubt it will do him any harm. Once mine are on adult mice they eat one every 2-3 weeks, so him being without food for a fortnight is absolutely fine.

12-15-2012, 04:28 PM
Sorry about the picture it should work here. the mouse seems the same size as his middle but I would feel better with a second opinion since this is my first snake.


I have been following the advice of the pet store owners and have noticed a lot of changes in him since then both good and bad. Now I'm quite confused which recommendations I learned are healthy for him or not. This is regarding both feeding and heating temps.

Since I live in MI they said its better to use both the UT heater and the Heat lamp during the winter which seems plausible because its gets pretty darn cold. He seemed more active with the heat changed, before I upped his food size to adult that is. In terms of Ambient air temps it should be high 80s in the hot and low 70s on the cool right?

Problem is when that is achieved his actual floor temps are mid 90s (95-105 in his hot hide) and mid 80s in the low. As mentioned he seemed more active at these temps but after the feeding change he will not budge from the cold side.

12-15-2012, 04:39 PM
The mouse size looks fine, maybe you could try drying it and heating it up using a hair dryer, it's worked for me before with picky adults.

12-16-2012, 04:59 AM
The temps should be 85-88 warm side, 75-80 cool side. My cool side can usually get to around 70 which is fine as well. Do you have anything regulating the heat from UTH? The snake probably stays on the cool side because the warm side gets too hot. But then again some snakes prefer the cool side while digesting. It could be either or.

12-16-2012, 05:05 AM
Most of mine prefer the cool side, even when the warm side floor surface is an ideal 85. As long as the mice go in one end and normal poop comes out the other, then his digestion is fine.

There's a debate about floor vs ambient vs floor+ambient heat going on in another thread at the moment. Not sure it will clear any confusion up for you, but it's an interesting discussion!

12-16-2012, 05:09 AM
Problem is when that is achieved his actual floor temps are mid 90s (95-105 in his hot hide) and mid 80s in the low. As mentioned he seemed more active at these temps but after the feeding change he will not budge from the cold side.
The actual floor temps are far too hot, IMO. If your place stays at a comfortable range for you, setting the floor temps at 80-85 would be fine.

12-26-2012, 10:13 PM
My little man is a fussy feeder. He won't eat unless i defrost the mouse at room temperature, dip the rodents head in boiling water for a minute (this makes the skin a little looser/thinner and releases some blood, exposing more tasty brain smells) then quickly fully dry it, put it on the tongues, move it to get his attention and stay still while he grabs on to it. He also will only eat in his tank. He moved up from small mice to the larger rat fuzzies recently and he's wanting longer to digest it. Normally he'd accept food every 5 days, though i'd feed him every 7 days. Now he's on the larger prey he'll mostly accept food every 7 days, though i feed every 10. Maybe he's wanting to feed less often on the bigger prey?

Be careful of offering food too much after a refusal - trying to feed too much can stress a snake out. If i was you i'd go back to the smaller size, re-establish a feeding routine, then offer a larger size and wait a few days longer than normal before the next feed attempt.

Just to be sure, the prey should separate the scales on the neck nicely while he's eating. You can see in this photo Sebby is on a small rat fuzzie and from the scale seperation could go for slightly larger rat fuzzies: