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Bad Shed or Something Else? Puebloan Milk Snake Hasn't Eaten for 6+ Weeks!

Discussion in 'Milksnakes' started by CharKay, May 30, 2014.

  1. CharKay

    CharKay New Member

    My little Lita won't eat. I've had her since birth and she's about 8 years old. I've not had a problem with her until now.

    She blued in mid March but I never found a shed skin. She's not had a bad shed in years so this concerns me. Doubly so because she has not eaten since though I've tried to feed her several times without success. Usually I feed her 2 adult f/t mice every week and she usually eats them within minutes of sticking them in her vivarium. Lately she just ignores them. I even gave her a live rat to eat which she killed but did not eat. She's lively and active and appears healthy. And I'm confident that she has never gotten cold enough to burmate or think about burmating.

    When I handle her I see creases at different spots on her body like the old skin is still stuck on her. I've soaked her in warm baths, rubbed her gently with a temped wash cloth after a bath a couple of times. Some scales came off of her this evening when I was rubbing her again but they don't look like old skin scales. And I noticed that the creases I see weren't there after her bath so I'm thinking it might have to do with dehydrated skin or something.

    She's got plenty of water in her glass vivarium -with a wire mesh flip top lid- to soak in and drink. And I've seen her drink and soak plenty of times. The temps reach high 80s during the day and low 80s, high 70s at night, natural heating and lighting (I don't have heating pads active on her vivarium or an active lamp). She has never burmated before. I've got coconut fiber as bedding, enough for her to burrow through if she wants. (she has done so in the past).

    I'm definitely a bit anxious about her having not found any solution to get her to eat or shed if shedding is the underlying problem.
     
  2. TJOHNSON722

    TJOHNSON722 Elite Member

    What do you mean by natural heating and lighting? Do you live in a hot climate? How are you measuring these temps? I'm guessing by the vagueness of the temps in your posts it is a stick on thermometer and hygrometer. Those are horrid at telling the actual temps. Walmart sells Accurite digital thermometer with hygrometer with probe for 12.00.

    Sounds like a shedding problem to me. If his eyes went blue, and he never shed then somethings wrong with the humidity and temps. Almost all shedding problems are caused by not enough or too much humidity and wrong temps.

    In the meantime while you are getting that figured out, make a moist hide for him to use. It'll help him get his stuck shed off. Pictures of him and the enclosure would also help tremendously.

    6 weeks is nothing for an adult snake to go off feed. Your ok for now with that.
     
  3. CharKay

    CharKay New Member

    Re: Bad Shed or Something Else? Puebloan Milk Snake Hasn't Eaten for 6+ Wee

    I have a digital probe thermometer. And yes, I do live in a hot desert climate. I say natural because temperatures reach 88 - 94 during the day and 75 - 80 at night. Natural lighting because her vivarium is close to a window so she gets the sunlight rather than a lamp light. It just gets too hot to use a lamp light and/or a heating pad.

    Thanks for the suggestion. I'll try that next.
     
  4. MorganLeFay

    MorganLeFay Elite Member

    Re: Bad Shed or Something Else? Puebloan Milk Snake Hasn't Eaten for 6+ Wee

    Don't worry about the not-eating. Adult snakes can go without food for much longer than 6 weeks without a problem. Right now I'd concentrate on getting the humidity right. You can make him a hide with moist sphagnum moss, it helps with shedding issues.
     
  5. TJOHNSON722

    TJOHNSON722 Elite Member

    What is the humidity and how are you measuring it?
     
  6. CharKay

    CharKay New Member

    Re: Bad Shed or Something Else? Puebloan Milk Snake Hasn't Eaten for 6+ Wee

    Update:

    Took her to the vet and found out that she had an infection - intrigued the vet as he said that he'd never seen a case like hers before - that I am still treating her for as per the vet's instructions. What surprised him was that there was white smelly puss exuding from her vent and before I took her in I noticed that her hemepenes were plugged? with something hard and black.

    Been treating her with injected antibiotics and placing her in a more humid box for a few hours at a time to try and get that bad shed off of her. The infection has cleared up but I'm still going through with the whole treatment. She is still losing weight though and that really concerns me. Today she is 0.430kg. Three days prior she was 0.455kg and six days prior from today 0.463kg. I'm using a bag and a hanging scale since she tolerates that better than sticking her in a bowl with a lid on it to weigh her on a kitchen scale.

    After a few weeks the shed is finally coming off in bits and pieces but only from her underbelly and two triads/pattern sequences from her head. Plus the scales that stick to my hands when working with her. The vet suggested rubbing her with a bit of Vitamin E to help the shed and I've done that 3 times, succeeding in only ****ing her off and her letting me know by tearing into my arm and fingers. I've tried using a dry wash cloth on her after she's been in her 'humid box' to coax the skin off but that hasn't worked either. The scales have a rough texture to them like the shed has bunched up or something. When she's wet they are nearly smooth.

    I've also tried to feed her a couple of times by assist feeding her (she just spits it out) and smacking her head with the mouse in an attempt to 'tease feed' her (idea found on YouTube) which she blatantly ignored. - though she did attack the rag once and tried to eat it.

    Any suggestions on how to get the rest of the shed off of her and getting her to eat would be welcomed.

    Wth? Why is one of my words being censored? It's not a curse word.
     
  7. MorganLeFay

    MorganLeFay Elite Member

    Re: Bad Shed or Something Else? Puebloan Milk Snake Hasn't Eaten for 6+ Wee

    If it's a 'she' then she doesn't have hemipenes XD
     
  8. CharKay

    CharKay New Member

    Re: Bad Shed or Something Else? Puebloan Milk Snake Hasn't Eaten for 6+ Wee

    *facepalm* XD
    I know that.
    Shows me not to write a post when I'm half asleep and watching snake videos.
    *headdesk*
     

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