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  1. #1
    Registered User ParmleyStyle's Avatar
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    how to spot a non healthy snake at a show..

    so i am planning on attending my first show soon... im scapeing every penny i can togo and get some awesome snakes... i dont know how to spot diseases and mites... and what else would i want to look at on a snake i plan on paying 500-1000+ for? any and all help would be great... and i already know about getting paperwork on snakes being purchased.. thanks in advance.. PEACE...

  2. #2
    BPnet Veteran
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    Re: how to spot a non healthy snake at a show..

    Most importantly, you want to be sure you are getting it from a reliable source. A good breeder will stand behind the snakes they sell, so even if something unfortunate happens like the stress of the show causes the snake to develop an RI, the breeder will help you through that or perhaps offer a refund or a replacement animal.

    Some general things to look for:
    - The snake should overall look and act healthy, and be of a good body weight.
    - Snakes that have a triangular body shape are underweight. This may be a sign of a very picky eater, but while BPs can be picky they usually don't starve themselves to death, so it is more likely a sign of a snake that simply wasn't fed enough, or possibly has internal parasites. Not a seller I'd want to buy from.
    - If a snake is too lethargic, that could be a sign of some hidden illness. A ball that doesn't move because it is balling up may just be afraid, but one that just doesn't move at all would concern me.
    - Look/listen for signs of RIs: wheezing, whistling, or popping sounds when breathing, open mouthed breathing, mucus or bubbles in the mouth or nostrils, etc. Sometimes when a snake is about to or has just shed, a bit of shed in the nostrils can cause a whistling sound, so it may be nothing, but I'd be extremely cautious about buying a snake that is showing any signs of possible illness. I might work with a breeder I really trusted to get a snake I really wanted, but 99.9% of the time I'd just avoid it entirely.
    - Look closely for mites. It is usually easiest to notice them around the eyes of the snake, and I've heard they also crawl around the nostrils, mouth, and heat pits, but I haven't personally seen that as much as around the eyes. Sometimes after you've held a snake that has mites, you'll see one crawling on you. If one snake in a collection has mites, they probably all do, so beware of anything that seller has. In fact, if you see mites anywhere at a show, they are likely to get carried around by all the people attending the show, so you may bring mites home with you, even if you don't bring a snake home! Mites are easily eliminated, so buying a snake with mites isn't the end of the world. However, since mites are easily eliminated, I'd worry about other things that seller should be taking care of with his animals, but has not been.
    - The snake should not have any stuck shed. If it does, it probably isn't really an issue in and of itself, but to me it indicates that it may have been kept in less than ideal conditions, and/or the seller doesn't take enough time with his animals to help the occasional one that goes through a bad shed. It is also possible that the snake just happened to be in shed, and is having a bad shed due to being at the show, so this one is not a deal breaker, but something that would make me a little more cautious.

    I'm sure there is more, but it is late and that's all I can think of right now.
    Casey

  3. The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to kc261 For This Useful Post:

    Aes_Sidhe (02-25-2010),Capray (06-21-2012),ParmleyStyle (02-22-2010),qinw (07-25-2010)

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