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Rosy Boa That Refuses to Eat

Discussion in 'Rosy Boas & Sand Boas' started by ariesmommy, Aug 2, 2011.

  1. ariesmommy

    ariesmommy Elite Member

    I have had a rosy boa for a month and a day. he ate 4 days before we got him and he shed i think the 4th or 5th night while we were at work (8p-8a) and he refuses to eat. he uses his food as a pillow pretty much. we took him to the vet and they soaked him in water and they defecated him. they said he was constipated and we needed to lower the humidity and raise his temp. take out the bark and replace with newspaper and take out his big water bowl and put in a cap full of water. we did all of that. they said to do it for 2 weeks and every 2 days try to feed him. if he doesnt eat within the 2 weeks we have to take him back to the vet and they will force feed him. any suggestions on how to get him to eat????
     
  2. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Give us the details of exactly how you are housing it. Tank size, temperatures, etc.
     
  3. ariesmommy

    ariesmommy Elite Member

    the temperature stays around 85-90 during the day at night it stays around 80. the humidity is 40 all the time. the enclosure is a 20 long tank...dont know exact measurements but my friend said it could be too big for him since he was in a box that was about 9 inches long and wide. he has a rock and a tree stump kinda log. he stays in the log most of the day but will get out every now and again to climb on his thermometer and do laps around his tank. he never sleeps at night. we try to feed him pinkies. frozen of course and yes we do heat them. weve tried scalping also. he just refuses to eat. we tried one week then skipped another then the next week we tried again then we took him to the vet and they told us to try this strategy. i heard tryin to feed them every other day would stress them out and i dont think its gonna work and **** have to be force fed. i think i answered all the questions to the best of my ability. thanks :) hope this helps.
     
  4. Iggysmommie

    Iggysmommie Elite Member

    I do know rosy's are usually voracious feeders, but they are also desert dwellers. Not the regular sand desert out around here they are found in the rocky areas. So I would say maybe more hides? They also tend to be nocturnal since it is so hot, are you feeding at night? Now mind you I am talking about wild natives and I have never had a captive one.
     
  5. ariesmommy

    ariesmommy Elite Member

    ok ill try to get another hide away for him. no we try to feed him during the day bc we work at night. we leave at 7:30pm to go to work and dont get back until 8:30am. we sleep during the day most of the time but we do get him out alot and let our guinea pigs free roam too so theyre not neglected at all. there are days that we have no sleep at all and we still stay up to play and feed them and all. they come first except when were exhausted. weve tried to leave him alone this week bc they said gettin him out everyday could stress him out wheres he shy. but idk. well see if he eats if not he'll be force fed
     
  6. Iggysmommie

    Iggysmommie Elite Member

    before you force feed try feeding at night right before you go to work.
     
  7. ariesmommy

    ariesmommy Elite Member

    we have and as usual he just lays on it then slithers around it. we even let him stay in the box for an hour and still ignored it. we tried around 6:30-7:20 and it seems nothin we do is good enough to make him eat
     
  8. Iggysmommie

    Iggysmommie Elite Member

    have you tried putting the mouse and snake in a dark sterilite or a paper bag and leaving them for a bit. If that dont work you can try tongs and keep ahold of the mouse and move it around and tap the snake by the mouth with it it may temp her to strike and then maybe to eat. barring that I would say second opinion with a different vet. there maybe something wrong that the first vet didnt see.


    *edit If that fails as a last resort you can try live but I dont recommend it. if you do try I would not leave them unsupervised and if she doesnt strike with in a couple of seconds take the mouse back out.
     
  9. bucher70

    bucher70 Elite Member

    Take the substrate out and replace with a non particulate for now, and feed in the enclosure, dangle in front of the hide with the lights out. My ball wont feed after I handle him so he eats in his enclosure. I leave the substrate in, i just lay paper plates in his enclosure in the morning on feeding days, then feed later at night with the lights out. He usually fires out of his hide and takes the rat with no problem.

    Snakes wont feed if stressed, so moving him could cause him not to feed. Im aware many people recomend not feeding in the enclosure because of biting, blah blah. If the only time you go in the enclosure is to feed, then yeah, you will condition the snake to feeding mode when the enclosure is opened. If you handle regularly it should not be a problem. The ingestion of substrate is of a greater concern by far, which is why you should take the substrate out for now or lay a plate or somthing in the enclosure.
     
  10. ariesmommy

    ariesmommy Elite Member

    we have newspaper down so what should we lay down for him? weve tried the tongs and everytime we try to touch him with it he jumps back and just slithers the other way. ive even tried putting gerbil hair on it to make it smell like a rodent he flicks his tongue like crazy for about 10 mins inspecting it then he just goes the other way. whenever we cut the night lights on its like he drank caffeine or had an energy drink. but as soon as those day lights come on hes back in that log and thats where he stays most of the time during the day. someday i worry because he never comes out. one night we left a pinkie in his enclosure all night long. didnt touch it but that was before we took the bark out and replaced it with newspaper. were gonna get a fresh pinkie probably on thurs or so and see if he takes that one. if you have anymore suggestions please let me know. i dont want to force feed him because that can do alot of damage with tearing stuff.
     
  11. purplemuffin

    purplemuffin Elite Member

    I had a heck of a lot of trouble getting Maru to eat f/t... If it touches him once, he won't go for it, he's too frightened. Same goes for if I take him out of his tank. We just have to wait a few hours after he gets too scared. He's just a high stress animal, yours might be too! The only time I can get him to eat is if he is in his hide with his head facing out.. I dangle the rat just outside of the hide..He struck very quickly! Also, make sure the food is warm enough! (this is where I love having a temp gun!)
     
  12. ariesmommy

    ariesmommy Elite Member

    i think hes stressed out too but cant figure out how to get him to eat. ill try to see if ur strategy works didnt even try to get him to eat while inside. ill look for temp guns. what temp should it be? thank you :)
     
  13. BeckyJ

    BeckyJ Elite Member

    You are pretty safe feeding live pinkies, so you might just see if he will eat them. My rosy won't touch anything that doesn't have a beating heart. What I do with anything larger is smack the mouse on the back of the neck, right at the base of the skull, with the welded end of the feeding tongs. It severs the spine, so the mouse is paralyzed and can't hurt the snake, and the mouse also doesn't feel pain anymore, so it's more humane all the way around. Then I dangle it by the tail near her, but not to close, so she can come over to it and strike. When she grabs it I immediately let go.

    Good luck.
     
  14. ariesmommy

    ariesmommy Elite Member

    our tongs are the plastic ones. hopefully we can find the metal ones soon just incase we get a ball python which im pretty sure we will soon. my friend does that to the bigger mice ): breaks my heart but thats just how the food chain is ya know? im more than likely going to buy a female and a male gerbil (even though i have 3 males already) and i will breed them. hopefully he will eat. i wish we could find somebody that has a live baby gerbil so we could at least see how he reacts to it instead of spending $4 on gerbils to mate and he doesnt even bother with the babies then. thanks :)
     
  15. purplemuffin

    purplemuffin Elite Member

    Oh goodness, let me see if I can find the post where I was told what temp a living rodent is..

    Anyway, while I look, I have one extra tip--just in case your snake was fed live and is used to it. This much preparation isn't always necessary, but it really helped me with my problem feeder. I thaw out my rodents very early in a warm room, let them fully get room temp, then start to heat them up. Be careful with heating it too fast, you don't want to accidentally cook the rat, it'll make it more likely for it to um rip in half when constricted by the snake, it's gross. Every time I'm in a rush we end up with a bloody feeding. I try to keep it warm for a long time though, so that the heat gets into the center of the body and not just the skin. Sometimes snakes can tell the heat is just on the skin and it isn't from the animal, and it lets them know the animal is dead--and not interesting! So I like to make sure the whole animal is equally warm, so even if the skin cools off a bit during the whole attempt to feed the snake will still see the heat signature and be interested!


    Anyway, I can't find the actual numbers, but I know the head needs to be warmer than the body, and the head should feel warmer than your hand. I think the body is usually in the upper 80s, and the head gets to be like, 100 degrees? I sort of just guestimate sometimes, I've gotten used to the feeling so I know how warm it should be. Most of my early problems were just a mouse that was still too cool on the inside that the outside heat just went away in less than a minute!

    Try getting the snake to sort of chase the rodent--Get it's attention(their tongues flicker a little different, you can tell when they are really interested in the food!) and barely move it away, see if it follows. That approach works with my boa! Then if it is following but not striking, barely get it closer, not touching the snake though.


    Also, I like to warm up my rodents in the reptile room! For the last bit of warming up I use a blow dryer, and blow that stinky rodent smell towards the snake, get them a little worked up for a while before you show them the rat so they are already hungry and craving some food! It's like baking cookies right in front of them, lol.. torture!


    Now, not all of these things may work, every snake is different, and maybe just one of these things might help the problem and you can ignore the rest! (like, my boa will strike at anything that smells like a rat. I could probably get away with not even heating up the rat and just letting it thaw, but I still do anyway)
     
  16. ariesmommy

    ariesmommy Elite Member

    we got him from petsmart and they said they feed them frozen so no hes not used to live. when i get home in the morning i will put it in the hottest room of our house and let it sit there...how long should i let it sit out??? and then ill heat it up with the heat lamp and see if that helps. ill post an update if he does or not :) i didnt know they could tell where the temp is...thats neat :)
     
  17. ariesmommy

    ariesmommy Elite Member

    also could you tell me what the numbers mean again for your family. i read it somewhere but i cant find it now and i want to list all of mine :)
     
  18. bucher70

    bucher70 Elite Member

    News paper is fine. Dont touch him with it, youll just spook him. He will be more active at night becuse he is a nocturnal snake, so this is normal.
    Thats why the suggestion of feeding with the lights off at night was mebtioned.
    Ive also noticed if i place the rodent under my snakes heat lamp to heat it up, mr snakey goes crazy looking for it. Like I said dangle it in front of his hide while he is in it. Snakes are ambush predators, by dangling it in front of the hide the snake feels secure taking the prey item. Wiggle it drag it but dont hit him in the face with it, you may scare him if he is a shy snake, which I believe rosys are.
    How big is he, you can offer prey the same size or one and a half times larger as the thickest part if the snake. The head size is irrelevant. If there is alot of noise or activity around during feeding, this will cause insecurity as well.
     
  19. bucher70

    bucher70 Elite Member

    Ha ha. looks like everybody already told you what you needed while i was typing! Oh well.
    Good luck with you, youll figure it out, you just need to think like a snake. They look for warmth security, food and water, and a mate. Thats pretty much it.
     
  20. ariesmommy

    ariesmommy Elite Member

    ok ill try the lights off deal and heating it under his lamp. everytime we did touch him on the face with it he jerked back and slithered away so we now wiggle it in front of him and see if he takes it but he just studies it for about 10 minutes then goes about his business. the only way we can try the lights off is during the weekend so ill have to wait till saturday to try that and wont be able to post until monday night around 8pm but if he does yall better expect to see a post on here :) thanking everybody for their suggestions :) rosys are shy...very. he is 16 inches long as of right now. the pinkies are smaller than the biggest part of him. and also we have the tv on sometime till our friends told us the speakers will drive him crazy so we always cut the tv off now. thank you and ill definitely try that.
     

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