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Feeding Question

Discussion in 'Rosy Boas & Sand Boas' started by BeckyJ, Aug 7, 2012.

  1. BeckyJ

    BeckyJ Elite Member

    My son's rosy boa is quite small.. maybe a little over 2 feet long, and has a very very tiny head. (He is the snake pictured in my avatar.) Moving him up from hoppers to small mice when we first got him made me nervous, however, he has since been moved up to the largest mice the pet store sells with no problems. It takes him a little over a minute to get one down, and there is no lump showing after. He also acts hungry again after just three of four days. I'm considering trying rat pups with him. The pet store has offered to place an order for me when they put in there regular order (they don't regularly keep rat pups in stock).

    I am wondering what other snake owners (rosy or otherwise) think about this. I know the standard for feeding (1 1/2 times the widest part of the snake, large mice are less than that size), and that I shouldn't consider his head size when picking feeders, but his head is just so darned small it makes me nervous.. My rosy is almost twice his size, so I've never had any concerns with feeding her. (I am keeping her on large mice because she is old and not metabolizing correctly anymore.. even at one large mouse every week she is gaining weight, and she refused her mouse this week anyway.)

    Here is his head next to a nickle..

    Note the lack of any bulge.. this was taken minutes after he ate a large mouse. Do you think I should move him up?

    Sorry the pictures aren't very good.. they were taken with my phone, and he wouldn't stop moving..
  2. diehardislanders

    diehardislanders Elite Member

    I have the same dilema with my girl. She is Anza Borrego. Every time I feed her I get nervous and wonder if the prey was too big but she gulps it down regardless. I actually just bought rat pinkies. this weekend to try to feed her. I ordered a few carpet pythons, so I figured it would be most convenient to get all of my snakes on rats. Also, she remains active after she eats. Sometimes she takes the next day off, but that is it regardless of how much she ate. She also happens to be my most aggressive feeder. She is the calmest most comfortable snake I own, but when she is in feeding mode WATCH OUT! She tries to bite my snake hook lol.

    Free picture:


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  3. TJOHNSON722

    TJOHNSON722 Elite Member

    You could feed 2 or more large mice. I've done that a lot. Or look at small rats. Once they are stretched out and not curled up they aren't that much bigger than mice. Rat pups are smaller than a mouse. I don't know the name for rats between pups and small rats but look into those too. It would be the equivalent to a hopper mouse in rats.
  4. JoeyG

    JoeyG Subscribed User Premium Member

    If the snake can't eat it it'll stop itself. It make take longer to get down but they manage :)
  5. BeckyJ

    BeckyJ Elite Member

    I had thought about feeding two mice, and have done that a time or two when Lucy "kills" her mouse (I feed f/k, she was w/c by her previous owner and has always refused anything else) and then won't eat it. I put her killed mouse in the freezer today when she refused to eat it and am going to see if I can get Leo to take it next week. I figure offering him his first f/t as familiar prey can't hurt.

    Thanks for the information on rat sizes, I had no idea. I have fed newborn rat pinkies before.. is that the same as rat pups? (My sister got three female pet rats.. one of which turned out to be male.. they are separated now, so no more free food! LOL) Her adult rats are huge though, so I never thought that my kids would be able to eat a full size rat. I will have to look into the sizes a little more.
  6. BeckyJ

    BeckyJ Elite Member

    Very true.. I am a little paranoid about my scaly kids. :)

    On a side note.. today was the first time my son (who got Leo for his 11th birthday last September) helped me feed him. I killed the mouse, but he got Leo into the feeding tub and then fed him the mouse with the tongs. Soon I won't be having to do all the feeding myself!! (Hey, a mom can dream, can't she? LOL!!)
  7. TJOHNSON722

    TJOHNSON722 Elite Member

    Yes rat pinkies are the same as rat pups. I would look at small rats. If he or she will only do one meal not two then try a bigger meal. I was nervous at first when I started to move up however, if they can't take it they won't eat it. You could have the store get one out first and then once its out you can see it isn't that much bigger. Just look for smaller small rats.
  8. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    No, they aren't.
    Rat pinkies are newborns, 1-4 days old.
    Rat pups are a couple of weeks old and are just about the same size as a large adult mouse.

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