View Full Version : Giving medicine. I need help!

Giving medicine. I need help!

02-12-2010, 09:46 PM
Hello everyone,

My little darling has take some medicine via catheter(sp?). I suspected he had a minor URI, and the doctor prescribed his medicine. I just attempted to give it to him, and wow, what an adventure. They say it burns going down. So, that would explain his adverse reaction and wanting to get away. Am I holding his head wrong? Should I make him wrap around my arm? Should I try injecting at the side of the mouth? I am so confused. :awcrap:

I want him to get better and to make sure he is getting his medicine. He already is moving around more and is flicking his tongue more rapidly since getting the first dose with the vet. I would hate to have to make him go to the vet to get shots instead of orally. Any help would be greatly appreciated. This whole process makes me realize how docile and gentle cornsnakes really are. He hasn't once tried to strike at me. Just wants to play dead and hide.lol


02-12-2010, 10:15 PM
You didn't say how big the snake is. If it is big enough you want to hold the snakes head with your left hand and tuck the body under your left arm. Hole the head on the sides, not the top and bottom. Using the catheter, pry open the mouth and slid the catheter into it's mouth being careful that the tube goes down the throat at the back of the mouth and not the glautus in the front of the mouth. You want to inject the medicine into the throat not just into the mouth, he'll just spit it out.

snakewispera snr
02-12-2010, 10:18 PM
I use this method for treating RI's in new bought snakes......
You need two people present.... One to hold the snake as straight as possible and one to insert the catheter..... (about 1/3 the way down the body)
You may need a flat stick to hold the snakes mouth open, and blow into the mouth to get it to open the wind pipe) ( I guess the vet showed you how to do this)
Then insert the catheter...... Inject the AB into the catheter and then blow it down with a big syringe...... (he will of shown you this as well)
Then gently shake the snake to get the AB around the lung......
This is the best method of treatment for RI I have used.....
Are you using a neb with F10 and AB as well, twice a day to control the infection?
Do not stop treatment when you think the snake is better.... Keep it up for at least 2 weeks to make sure that the RI is killed....
BTW Amacasin is the best AB I have found,,,,, Baytril is getting to be superseded by Bacteria this side of the pond.....

02-12-2010, 11:06 PM
Thank you so much! I am sorry for not saying how long he is. He is about 3.75 feet. Do I need to do anything different because of his size?

02-12-2010, 11:07 PM
snakewispera, the doctor prescribed Baytril. Should I worry?

02-12-2010, 11:10 PM
No, you're fine. Baytril is a commonly used antibiotic and very safe for snakes. The reason I asked about the size just to know how to advise the handling. You can't tuck a 10" snake under your arm. Mikes suggestion of getting another person to help is good.

snakewispera snr
02-12-2010, 11:23 PM
Baytril will work if the bacteria isn't resilient to it.... Keep up the treatment even when you think you have it beat.....
Thats the trick with AB....... Hammer the little gits into submission.....

Plus an increase in heat will help the snake develop it's own immune to them...

02-12-2010, 11:51 PM
I am really frustrated by this. The only other option the Vet gave me was to bring him in to get shots. Well, I live in Minnesota, and constantly bringing him out every couple days is stressful and dangerous in my opinion. However, this whole process is stressful as well. I just want to do what's best for my snake. I am contemplating asking the Vet to just give me a syringe to administer my own shots. IMO shots seem to be the less stressful way for snakes, but I am new to this.

02-12-2010, 11:55 PM
Wait- are you sure she's supposed to be putting it into the lung, not into the stomach?? You'd think if the vet was letting you tube him, he'd also teach you how to give shots. It's not that difficult.

02-13-2010, 12:00 AM
Nanci, the Vet, well actually the Vet Nurse, told me to just slide it in until he bites.

02-13-2010, 01:12 AM
Baytril is not supposed to go into the lung. You should be putting it down the throat. When you open the mouth the first opening you see is the esophagus. That goes to the lungs, it is right in the floor of the mouth toward the front. You don't want to go there. You really need to get the syringe to the back of the snakes mouth so the medicine goes down his throat.

02-13-2010, 06:28 AM
Here's a thread (http://cornsnakes.com/forums/showthread.php?t=74431&highlight=tube+noah) that shows how I restrain a snake to put a tube down.

If the vet told you to put the tube in "till he bites" you are aiming for the digestive system, not the airway.

I pretty much hold the snake straight up and down, grasp firmly right behind the head, and let the rest of the snake do as it will.

If you sneak the tube in the corner of the mouth, as opposed to the exact front, you are very sure of missing the trachea. Once the tube is in a little bit, the snake will probably hold his mouth open and you will be able to verify that the tube is down the back of the mouth, not up in the front by the tongue in the airway.

02-13-2010, 08:02 AM
I would much prefer to administer medication to a snake orally than by injection. It's much easier and not painful to the snake. I purchased a set of metal feeding tubes (ball tip, various sizes for different size snakes) that makes it much easier to orally medicate them with. I can get the feeding tube well past the usual "point of return", it doesn't bend, it slides in easy, easy to clean and disinfect, and actually fairly inexpensive. The only thing you need to have is enough water in another syringe to flush the tube with to make sure you get all the medicine out of the tune.

snakewispera snr
02-13-2010, 02:55 PM
Baytril is not supposed to go into the lung. You should be putting it down the throat. When you open the mouth the first opening you see is the esophagus. That goes to the lungs, it is right in the floor of the mouth toward the front. You don't want to go there. You really need to get the syringe to the back of the snakes mouth so the medicine goes down his throat.
Yes it can and it's more effective in the treatment of RI's....
I've used that and Amikacin.... Both with a catheter to the lung...
And my vet showed me how to do it and prescribed the AB and gave me all the kit...

02-13-2010, 04:55 PM
I just want to thank everyone for the help! Nanci, that thread was good. With the help of a friend, I was able to get the medicine down. I just think I am scared that I am hurting my little guy when I am giving him medicine, but this is best for him.

02-13-2010, 07:07 PM
After the first few doses with Thumper, he relaxed a little bit and it's been a lot easier to give him his doses of Baytril, but I'm not having to use a cath or anything, just a syringe down the throat. After having my wife help hold him the first few days, just to get used to it, I can now do it myself using the under the arm technique. Seems like everyone has your questions answered, and know you aren't the only one that was worried about holding to tight, as it took me a few tries and him escaping my grip.

Best of luck and keep the doses going to get the little one back to full health.