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  1. #11
    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    You know your snake better than we can, from afar & on a forum- so if you think her issue is scent-related, it probably is. When you think about how many
    differences there are among other creatures, even humans, as far as our sensory abilities, it makes total sense to me that perhaps she is weaker in that area,
    especially as she has aged. We weren't all dealt the same "hand" in life...there are individual differences throughout the years, & since snakes use their sense of
    smell more than other senses, it only makes sense that a deficiency is noticeable & affects her appetite. But I know of no rodents that are super-smelly to help.

  2. #12
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    I was hoping that snakes were maybe immune to the indignities of the aging process... So sad! I hate to think that all of her meals moving forward will be cold and old but glad that she IS eating. She has been an awesome pet and I am grateful for all the trouble-free years she has given me. If her last few are a bit more high-maintenance then so be it.

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  4. #13
    BPnet Veteran hilabeans's Avatar
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    Re: Feeding Aging Pythons

    Quote Originally Posted by Bogertophis View Post
    Reminds me of a Far Side cartoon, ya gotta love Gary Larson! (he kept snakes too, btw)

    https://i.pinimg.com/originals/f6/d3...bda92edd00.jpg
    OMG, that's hilarious! Saving that one....

    1.0 Lesser Mojave Ball Python "Neptune"; 1.0 Western Hognose "Murray"

    Lizards:
    1.0 Bearded Dragon "Nigel"

    Tarantulas:
    0.1 G. Rosea "Charlotte"; 0.1 B. Albopilosum "Matilda"; 0.1 C. Versicolor "Bijou"; 1.0 B. Boehmei "Lightening McQueen"

    Inverts:
    1.0 Emperor Scorpion "Boba"

    Dog & Cats:

    1.0 Doberman Pinscher "Bulleit"; 1.0 Siamese Cat "Boudreaux"; 1.0 British Shorthair Cat "Oliver”


    Goats:
    "Hazelnut" & "Huckleberry"


  5. #14
    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    Re: Feeding Aging Pythons

    Quote Originally Posted by hilabeans View Post
    OMG, that's hilarious! Saving that one....
    Yeah, Gary Larson had a wonderfully twisted way of portraying animals in his cartoons- (& quite a few with snakes, how rare is that!?)

  6. #15
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    Re: Feeding Aging Pythons

    Good luck with your older snake. I have a 25 year old, so I'm always very interested in these kind of threads. Seeing what the future holds. I haven't noticed the specific issues you have, but over the last year mine chooses to eat much less frequently. Used to be a medium f/t rat every 7 to 10 days, now it's a small f/t rat every 2 or 3 weeks. Eyesight and other senses appear to be normal.

    Good luck to you and your snake.

    Sent from my XT1710-02 using Tapatalk

  7. #16
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    I am still floored by 28 years! I know the record is 47 or 48 but most don't live to half that from what I have found. My oldest is pushing 20.
    - Mason

  8. #17
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    Re: Feeding Aging Pythons

    Update! Tattoo is still alive and doing well. 31 years old and counting...

    We have both adjusted to the new normal which involves feeding her in her cage with the mouse placed just so at the opening of her hide. Sometimes she finds it right away, somtimes it takes her all night, and sometimes I end up tossing it out to the ravens in the morning.

    Last year she was offered either a large or jumbo adult mouse once a week and ended up eating only 22 of the 52 meals. She did lose some weight going from 2065 grams down to 1953 grams. A little scary but she remained well hydrated and somewhat active.

    This year she has already eaten 9 out of the 12 weeks so hopefully she will gain some of it back. Unfortunately she also seems to have developed some very slight neurologic issues...

    Every now and then I see her recoil and then make odd gnawing motions in the air. It's almost like she can't line her jaws up correctly. I have looked in her mouth to see if maybe there were any hairs or fibers wrapped around her teeth but haven't been able to find anything. Sometimes she accidentally bites her glottis which will bleed a little. Then the fit passes and she seems perfectly normal.

    The nearest competent reptile veterinarian is about four hours away so not sure I want to put her through the stress of travel and examination. Especially when she is eating so well right now!

    I have read a little about cold shock syndrome but not sure... She has definitely been temporarily exposed to cooler temperatures throughout our time together but this behavior is new. Any thoughts?

    Here's a pic of her just hanging out.


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  10. #18
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    Re: Feeding Aging Pythons

    I asked a friend to take a photo while I held her mouth open but they didn't quite capture what I wanted... I was really hoping for a full shot top and bottom that I could zoom in on to check for growths, wounds, infections, or foreign bodies. Didn't want to put Tattoo through it again so gave up. So frustrating! At least you can see the small pinprick wounds she gave herself.


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  12. #19
    Registered User Trinityblood's Avatar
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    Arthritis? I have no idea. Congrats on 31!

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  14. #20
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    She looks wonderful & congratulations on her 31 years!

    I've never known a snake to bite their own glottis, but I've seen a few that accidently folded their jaws (from an awkward feeding moment) & needed my help to unfold them, & in those cases they may well have bitten their glottis too, I just wasn't aware of it. But no infection or issues resulted from the weird incidents at least.

    Not sure what might be causing this occasional behavior. I doubt that a vet could verify much either, especially since it's not likely to happen in front of them, but if it happens again, try to catch a video to show them (& us?). I suspect that snakes can also have strokes & such...so it might not have been about anything in her mouth at all. I agree that these incidents sound "neurological" so I'm pretty sure there's nothing you can do to prevent them- just continue the good care you're already doing.

    I do find that older snakes may have more trouble digesting, & the biggest challenge would be larger prey. I'd be inclined to not feed her jumbo mice & stick with regular adult mice- maybe adjust the frequency she's fed too. My 22 year old corn snake often skips meals now too- he's definitely thinner but nothing I can do about that. Time catches up with everything.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

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