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Health Issues/Feeding Problems Anything related to general or specific health problems. Issues having to do with feeding problems or tips.

"but i only like'em live!"
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Old 03-03-2010, 04:17 PM   #1
jayhimself
"but i only like'em live!"

(this is a repost... i originally posted it in the "Feeders" forum, which i later realized wasn't the right place for it.)

So i recently picked up a three year old corn snake. the kid that owned it before had raised her on live mice. i knew this before hand, but figured i'd try and feed her a pre-killed mouse. She refuses to take the dead mouse. I've tried everything. I tried warming it, dangling it in front of her face with tongs, hell i even tried putting a little tuna juice on it. I left the mouse in the viv for most of the day but nothing. I knew the snake had just finished shedding not long before i picked her up so I didn't think it could be a pre-shed thing.

The next day I went back to the store and picked up a live mouse. I removed her from her viv and put her into her feeding tank. dropped the mouse into the other end and almost instantly she grabbed it up and promptly ate it...

I've owned snakes before (sand boa & ball python) and had always fed them live mice (i guess i always assumed this was all that was available). It's always kind of bothered me that the mouse has to suffer but figured it was just a natural part of life and dealt with it. However after finding this forum and extensively reading, i see that most of you prefer dead mice not only for humane reasons but for the safety of the snake.

She is getting quite bit and MAY have to move up to rats here eventually?? which i'm sure can pack a little more punch than a mouse...I don't want to hurt my snake, I would prefer to feed pre-killed but it doesn't seem like it's going to be a possibility. Any suggestions other than what i've tried already?

P.S. If i decide to raise my own feeders, how do you humanly kill them?
 
Old 03-03-2010, 04:25 PM   #2
snakewispera snr
Snakes do not feed because they are hungry in the human sense...
They feed via response....
As keepers of snakes we need to find and trigger this response....
Sometimes it's smell or heat or movement or vibration....
Dark, being left alone, overnight, at dusk, brown rat, black mouse, multi, etc etc.....
Keep trying everything you can and even try things that sound bizarre...
 
Old 03-03-2010, 04:26 PM   #3
LBoz
Hi, Jay! Glad to see that you're doing your research. My first comment is that you should really never have to feed your corn rats. Mice are fine, regardless of the snake size. You might have to increase the size of your mice, and you can find larger ones online for much less than in the pet stores.

As far as converting him over to f/t...that can be tricky. How are you thawing the frozen? Some put them in a cup of warm water directly. Others thaw them in a baggie so the mouse stays relatively dry. MAYBE it would help to try a fresh killed and see if that works. There are a lot of tricks available, so you might have to work it out a while to see what's right for him. Also, how long are you going between feeds? If he's that big, he can go a pretty long while before needing to feed again, so you might want to try to make sure he's REALLY hungry. I have snakes that have gone months without eating, and they're perfectly fine, so don't feel like he'll die of starvation if you hold out longer than you normally would.
 
Old 03-03-2010, 04:26 PM   #4
Nanci
Have you let her get good and hungry? I'd try letting her got 14-21 days, then trying with a pre-killed. Like a FRESH pre-killed. Put her in a feeding bin with it, in the evening, cover her up, set a timer for two hours.
 
Old 03-03-2010, 04:28 PM   #5
Nanci
Something else that might work is a FT pinky rat or fuzzy mouse, heated up REALLY hot, to 102F. Most of my snakes view hairless rodents as snake candy.
 
Old 03-03-2010, 04:46 PM   #6
jayhimself
is it really worth wasting mouse after mouse after mouse in order to get them to eat them dead? i mean, i know it's a mouse but it's life has some value and them just being flushed down the toilet day after day when i know full well she'll take a live one... i guess i should just man up and start breakin necks?
 
Old 03-03-2010, 04:46 PM   #7
LBoz
Quote:
Originally Posted by jayhimself View Post
is it really worth wasting mouse after mouse after mouse in order to get them to eat them dead? i mean, i know it's a mouse but it's life has some value and them just being flushed down the toilet day after day when i know full well she'll take a live one... i guess i should just man up and start breakin necks?
Oh, one should never waste snake food....instead, get another snake to take the leftovers!
 
Old 03-03-2010, 04:50 PM   #8
Aislin
You may not have to go through mouse after mouse after mouse. You may try it one more time and she will say HEY...not so bad! It is totally up to you what you decide to do but you did ask advice on this...
 
Old 03-03-2010, 04:50 PM   #9
snakewispera snr
Sometimes you just need to locate their trigger......
 
Old 03-03-2010, 04:50 PM   #10
Aislin
OOoh see I really like Lboz's solution...its what I'm doing afterall...
 

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