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Corn Snake Has A Bad Attitude

Discussion in 'Snakes - General' started by MadCheshire13, Dec 1, 2015.

  1. MadCheshire13

    MadCheshire13 Member

    Hey everyone! I got a corn snake a couple months back and things were great for the first month. I would take her out each day for a few minutes, no more than 10 put her back and go on my merry way. Well, about a month ago I read that you shouldn't handle more than 2-3 times a week max as it can stress them out any more than that. So I stopped my daily handling. Now however, she goes into strike mode when I go to retrieve her, I haven't needed a snake hook so I don't have one and have been using a paintbrush to retrieve her. It doesn't matter if I am just trying to handle her or get her to put her in the feed container. It's a "let's-chase-Alice-around-the-tank" game now. Now I'm worried about traumatizing her each time. She stays burrowed in the Aspen bedding and it surprises me when she's actually out in the hide. I don't know what to do now. She's still very small, I just got her up to two pinkies a week now and she had she'd twice since I've had her. I wonder if th3 humidity level is too low? Right now it's between 40 and 50% with the temp on the warm side around 85-90 and then 78-82 on the cool side where she stays. The tank had an under tank heat pat that came with I and I have a 50 watt bulb above it. Please help

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  2. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Cornsnakes are the closest thing we have to a "domesticated" reptile. I handled all of mine daily and never had an issue. Go back to your daily handling and don't worry about it.
    And as for a snake hook. A corn that size is incapable of doing any damage to you. It will feel like someone rubbed the sticky side of a Velcro strip on our skin.
  3. MadCheshire13

    MadCheshire13 Member

    Thank you! I am more worried about hurting her if she strikes at me. She's jumped from the brush a couple of time and I have jumped right along with her. I don't want to yank my hand away if she strikes and injury her but my jerk reflex is ridiculous.
  4. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Sounds to me like you are getting set up for the same thing that people say happens when feeding in the tank. The snake is being left alone except for feeding? So whjen the tank is opened it trows the snake into feeding mode.
    Not at all. We try to avoid injury so it is a valid reflex. The actual surprise of the strike is far worse than any bite I have gotten, least from a cornsnake!
    A good exercise is to go onto the tank, fully prepared and expecting to be bitten. Then when it happens you will see how minor it is.
    And if you are going in nervous, your approach is going to be twitchy and to the snake look more threatening than if you just reach in and get it.
    If all else fails get you a set of soft leather gardening gloves. The snake cannot bite thru and so you will be more at ease. Once you are back to routinely handling the snake it will settle back down.
  5. GitaBooks

    GitaBooks Well-Known Member

    Our first Corn Snake ever can be left alone for weeks and will still allow handling without a problem. However, our new Corn Snake is far more jumpy. She gets very stressed and fearful when I try to handle her, and just grabbing her up will only cause more stress.

    I try to let her climb over my hand instead of just grabbing her up, because the fear and stress is not only un-fun but can't be healthy. No one would chase a fearful dog, right? However, I'm not an expert on snake behavior, so if anyone has anything to add to this, I'd love to hear it.

    Your snake sounds like it has a wonderful enclosure by the way! : )
  6. Darkbird

    Darkbird Elite Member

    Of the few corns I've dealt with, I've had little ones that were completely chill from day one, and one that seemed to think she was a baby rattler with a bad attitude. Got very defensive anytime I tried to get her out, but she was calming down nicely before I sold her (decided to get out of colubrids). And Merlin wasn't kidding, at the size of yours they can't even break skin.
  7. mimo91088

    mimo91088 Elite Member

    Keep in mind, baby snakes just bite more. Alot of times they just mellow out with age when they don't feel so vulnerable.
    Darkbird likes this.
  8. Darkbird

    Darkbird Elite Member

    There's a lot of truth in this, and it applies to all reptiles, and really most all animals in general. When they are babies then are preprogrammed to believe that everything bigger than them is going to eat them, and in the wild this would mostly be true. So in captivity, since they are usually denied the option of running away, they will defend themselves. With time and patience they usually learn that the "giant scary thing" isn't going to eat them, so they calm down and learn to put up with us.

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