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Friend Bought a Retic

Discussion in 'Reticulated Pythons' started by Katsura, Jun 26, 2012.

  1. Katsura

    Katsura Elite Member

    Yeah..... There's this specialty store here where I live that sells reticulated pythons.... And I love them. To be honest, I owe everything reptile related to a baby reticulated python. My boyfriend hated snakes, but when I took him to hold that baby retic, he fell in love with snakes much as I did.

    But you see, retics grow to be a humongous size. Generally not acceptable for the general populous to own. And my friend... He's had a ball python. It's still a baby. He's had it for maybe 3 months. And he went out and bought this super tiger reticulated python for $600.

    And I told him, I told him that even though retics are sweet, they're not the best pets, especially for beginner snake owners. I even told him that if he wanted a retic he should look into getting a dwarf or a super dwarf.

    But he goes out and he buys a retic. And then he sits there and tells me, "Well if it's too much to handle I can always just return it to the store," and "Well it's not like I haven't prepared for it,"

    You guys, I'm really angry. This was a really bad decision for him to make, especially because he lives alone. It's not good for him and it's DEFINITELY not good for the snake. Really disappointed in him. Kinda beside myself with anger to be honest... I don't know how someone could be so stupid....
  2. JoeyG

    JoeyG Subscribed User Premium Member

    Unfotunately there is a lot of that going around. I think people get it into their heads that having such an animal makes them look cool or something. I think they forget to regard the life the animal will have and its requirements. Hope the snake finds a good home when he realizes what he got into.
  3. mld

    mld Subscribed User Premium Member

    It's sad!
  4. CentriRitanni

    CentriRitanni Elite Member

    :( This is exactly why I end up with sick animals. Boo on your friend. Especially if he lives in CO... Maybe a zoo will take it in six months when he figures out he isn't a snake expert....
  5. Katsura

    Katsura Elite Member

    What does being in Colorado have to do with anything?
  6. CentriRitanni

    CentriRitanni Elite Member

    Electricity for heating a large enclosure. I'm not dogging on CO as a state, just that it's a cooler place and a rectic requires a very large enclosure, which I'm guessing (I have no actual idea, just a guess based on behavior) he does not have the proper resources to maintain. I could be totally wrong, but people who impulse buy large animals like this, in my experience, tend to not have the resources for adequate care. Colorado was significant only because (if I'm not mistaken) the highest average temp (in July) is like 70F.
  7. Dragoness

    Dragoness Elite Member

    Most zoos are already full fo unwanted exotic pets, and do not have room for any more. I know, I worked at one. We got dozens of calls every day from idiots trying to get rid of any animal you could think of. Crocodiles, snakes, tortoises, parrots, kinkajous, etc.
  8. CentriRitanni

    CentriRitanni Elite Member

    :( Jeez. While that does not surprise me at all, it's really quite sad.
  9. Katsura

    Katsura Elite Member

    gotcha. Also, I wasn't sure if you were aware, but currently, our state is on fire. It's burning to the ground. So, temps have been over 80, near 100, and it's only June. Things usually end up around 8 in July but our winters are pretty brutal. He has plenty of money and he's told me he's done the research for it and everything, but it's just.... not.. a good idea. He lives alone and once they get at a certain size you shouldn't handle them by yourself. Why he thinks he can do this is beyond me.
  10. Katsura

    Katsura Elite Member

    yeah, I know. On doing some research of my own I've found that a lot of people are like "lol I can TOTALLY do this," and when the adorable hatchling grows to be a massive snake, people just dump them off wherever, like the store they got it from, or zoos, and not all zoos will take them because, like you said, they're so full. And his attitude towards it isn't helping, either. I dunno, I'm just not very pleased with my friend right now haha
  11. CentriRitanni

    CentriRitanni Elite Member

    Unfortunately, I'm quite aware. The manager for our Colorado store called earlier to do his closing report 6 hours early, and we have to state a reason; his, verbatim, was, "There are cinders on our britches."

    Well at least he has the resources fiscally... still not a good idea... Does he have an entire bedroom to convert to an enclosure? eheu
  12. Katsura

    Katsura Elite Member

    Ooh, that's brutal. Where do you work at?

    And I don't really know. All he's told me is that "Really though I've been doing research and I've checked sites for custom cages when it is bigger." I just think he made a bad decision and didn't do ENOUGH research. I personally would be less upset if he'd have more experience with snake keeping than a baby ball python. But no, I don't really think he intends to have a whole room set aside for his new snake.
  13. CentriRitanni

    CentriRitanni Elite Member

    The enclosure should be at least half its length long and at least a quarter of its length wide... if you have a 20' snake, that's a 10'x5' enclosure, floor to ceiling... That's an enclosure that has to be built into a room. These animals are considered an advanced level... a baby python is not enough prep. Ugh, well, hopefully he doesn't kill it, but if he does, the skeleton would be cool (I do skeletal articulation... most of my specimens are sick animals that are taken to the reptile shop and die shortly thereafter)... People and impulse buys. Blegh.

    I work at Pottery Barn. I don't think their store was literally about to be on fire (I say this because we would have vacated long before that), but apparently there was enough smoke that he was having a hard time not coughing nonstop.
  14. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Your friend is in for a rude awakening! There is virtually no market for large retics! If it isn't something that they can readily sell, then they are not going to devote a huge area of space for it.
    I seriously doubt that he is going to find a pet store willing to take one and as Jenn pointed out, the zoos have long ago stopped accepting pet animals. They have limited funds to work with and their focus is on endangered species.
    They are not in the business of rescuing owners who were foolish enough to purchase something that they are not capable of dealing with.
  15. Dragoness

    Dragoness Elite Member

    Also, many zoos do not want morphs. They want normal animals for their collections, so that super tiger, albino, leucistic, etc, is even less in demand with them.

    I heard of lots of people deliberately buying something they KNEW they couldn't handle, and planning on donating it to a zoo, without ever having made any kind of formal arrangement with the zoo. Man, were they up a creek without a paddle when that Sulcata got to be too heavy to lift... People like that tend to treat zoos like animal shelters - they're not.
  16. gapeachkatie

    gapeachkatie Elite Member

    Excuse my little out burst, but your friend is an idiot! One of my friends has turned a 12x9 room into an enclosure for his (it is 21 ft long, and is 23 yrs old). It requires 5 people to handle it, and he doesn't even trust walking into the room while feeding it, he has a doggie door set up to put the prey in there. In total, I think he spent nearly $6000 to convert the room and set it up for proper humidity, water supply/drainage, and custom hiding areas and tree trunks for it to be able to climb.

    A retic is a lot of responsibility and extremely expensive to care for. Hope he has the time and energy/space to keep the snake and to start breeding prey items such as rabbits or pigs once it gets bigger.
  17. Katsura

    Katsura Elite Member

    @CentriRianni: Well I'm glad the guy here is CO was evacuated in time... We actually got some rain today, so that's been awesome. Additionally, I think snake skeletons are really neat, I was actually thinking of preserving the skeletons of my snakes when they die. And I guess I'm going to have to talk to him about what he plans to do for a snake enclosure for when it gets bigger. And I KNOW they're an advanced level snake; that's most of the reason why I'm so frustrated. Caring for a baby ball python for a few months does NOT make a person a snake expert.

    @Merlin: The pet store he got it from is a specialty pet shop; and they told him that if it got too big they would take it back from him. They used to have an almost fully grown retic that they were holding until they sold it to someone. Unfortunately, that store was taking improper care for it; it was kept in a cage that was FAR too small and it spent it's days curled up, taking up almost 3/4 of the cage up.

    @Dragoness: Yep, my friend is going to be in a crapload of trouble when this thing gets too big for him.... I said it once and I'll say it again, it wasn't a smart choice. Though someone buying a snake they knew they couldn't handle with the intention of pawning it off somewhere else kinda baffles me.

    @gapeachkatie: Uh.. yeah. Exactly. The store told him that the snake he bought would only be about 15 feet... Which is a load of baloney. We were talking about getting a retic at a more manageable size, such as a dwarf or a super dwarf, and he asked me what sizes each of them get.... And for him to believe that a super tiger reticulated python is only going to get 15 feet is ridiculous. We're talking about a regular retic here, not a dwarf. And he was telling me today that he's going to pay $550 for a custom enclosure when it gets bigger.

    There's really nothing I can do at this point though. I've told him he made a terrible mistake and he thinks he can do it, so it's out of my hands now. Just really disappointing and aggravating.
  18. gapeachkatie

    gapeachkatie Elite Member

    Another thing that bothers me about this, how does he expect to care for the snake during the winter, when a severe storm rolls through and possibly causes power outages? I know how bad it can get out there, and have witnessed one of my ex's losing all of his reptiles the first winter he was there due to the weather and being unprepared. This was about 6 or 7 years ago when a blizzard caused week long black outs and dumped over 4 ft of snow. :(
  19. Katsura

    Katsura Elite Member

    That's tragic, I'm sorry. And we haven't had a storm or a power outage that severe since the one you're describing. Both my friend and I don't live out up next to the mountains; while the Springs is set up pretty close against the mountain, we're not up right against it, so when there's a storm it isn't as bad as it would be up in like Aspen or Woodland Park. I live more inner city than he does, but all the same we haven't really had those issues in a long time. Though, that is a good thing to consider. I have no idea what he would do, I don't think he's thought of it. I know I certainly haven't.
  20. CentriRitanni

    CentriRitanni Elite Member

    They were in the Briarcreek center, and I'm not sure that it was even touched (haven't heard back yet), but yeah, why they were even open yesterday, I have no idea.

    That was part of the concern of Colorado. It's a lot of electricity to maintain that large of an enclosure, and should it go out, he may have a major problem on his hands. It does bring to light that everyone should have a shtf plan, though. For example, I live in Oklahoma, which means a good chance of tornadoes. The closest one has gotten to me is a half mile, but if there is one within 5 miles, all the herps go into boxes and into the bathtub with the dogs and me (it's the central spot) with a mattress on top, and each box has a "break" heat pack, which would only be used if my house were actually hit or if the electricity is out more than 24 hours (fortunately, where I live in the metro is centered between 3 transformers, so I've never been out of power more than 5 hours).

    As another aside: reptile skeletons really are amazing. My avatar is a tortoise skull. That one isn't one of mine, but I do have one (a guy left his dying tortoise at the reptile shop, and when it died a few hours later, they let me have the body).

    Back on topic: I really hope your friend recognizes the responsibility he has taken on and steps up to it. A retic is a lot: a lot of space, a lot of food, a lot of electricity, a lot of time, and a lot of money. I will hope upon hope for the snake's sake that he recognizes what he has gotten into and takes amazing care of the animal.

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