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  1. #1
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    Gaining confidence with new bp

    Hi all just joined the forum I am a new keeper of a little normal bp and was wondering how much these little things hurt when biting.
    I have read on Internet that it doesn't hurt then other people day its painful. He is about 90g at the min and only had him 2 weeks on Friday 23rd Oct.


    Any advice on building confidence as I didn't fear snakes but when I got him home and handles him I was shaking like a pooping dog.
    Any tips and tricks will be much appreciated
    He is eating like a rottweiler anything I put in front of him but it is my confidence I need to gain.
    Many thanks

  2. #2
    Registered User gcostello123's Avatar
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    Cool Re: Gaining confidence with new bp

    About 20 minutes ago i had to peel my 1000g female off of my pinky because she wrapped me. Im not going to lie to you....its not a good feeling, that being said it rates extremely low on the pain scale. It is a bit worse if they think you're a mouse and wrap you up because as you unwrap the their teeth dig in and move around. All in all though it really is not that painfully, it is just startling because of how fast it happens. Also if your BP is only 90 grams i wouldn't even worry about it for at least another couple months. If you do take a bite though remember ti be gentle, their teeth are very long and skinny and can break easily. Hope that helps!
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  3. #3
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    Re: Gaining confidence with new bp

    I haven't been bitten by either of my BP girls, but I've been bitten a few times by my bullsnake and it really doesn't hurt. As said above, it doesn't feel good, but it's more of a surprise than pain when it happens then a little sore for about 30 minutes. My BPs just don't bite - my older one, Ana Gwyn, is too much of a puppydog sweetheart to even consider it, and even though Tonks was a bit crankier when I got her, I handle her lots (daily, even if just to pick her up for 30 seconds) and now I can't imagine her ever biting me other than by accident. The bullsnake is a baby and still figuring out this whole life thing, and the only times he's bitten me were the day I got him and he was scared, the day I got too close while he had a mouse, and yesterday when I was rearranging his tub and accidentally pinched his tail (and he didn't even get me with his teeth, it was more of a hard nose-boop to say STOP IT). All my fault totally, but none of them hurt at all, just itched for a little bit after.

    Honestly, I think that most BPs aren't naturally prone to biting and if you've already had your baby for two weeks and haven't gotten nailed, you're probably not in much danger of it. Just feed with tongs, never stick your hands near them when you smell like prey, and you're probably good. I'm a big proponent of frequent handling, like I said even if just to pick them up for one minute to touch them all over and get them used to being held, which is especially good for headshyness. Also there are some good "snake body language" videos on youtube you can watch to look for the signs. Good luck and don't be scared, at 90g you wouldn't feel a thing anyway!

  4. #4
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    Re: Gaining confidence with new bp

    Thanks for the info guys.
    I haven't stopped watching YouTube and battered the battery on my phone just by looking on the Internet.

  5. #5
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    I'm not gonna say it doesn't hurt at all, but a cat scratch, stubbed toe, bee sting, sunburn, paper cut, etc...all hurt worse.

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    Bogertophis (10-31-2020),Zincubus (11-12-2020)

  7. #6
    BPnet Veteran Bogertophis's Avatar
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    Agree with the others, it's not a bite worth losing sleep over, lol. Far less damage than many other pets (dogs, cats, birds, rodents) can easily do & with far less risk of infection. As for what the teeth of a harmless snake feel like, just go bump your hand on a holly bush, or do some hand-sewing & poke your hand (not deeply) several times with a needle or straight pins. It's the sort of bite that makes you jerk back* with surprise but does very little in the way of actual damage. *Ironically, jerking back is what you should try to resist, as sometimes you'll break their tiny teeth off & they'll stay under your skin like translucent splinters. So if your "battle-wound" doesn't heal rapidly, you might have some embedded teeth, but you'll still live...you just want to get them out.

    Happily, most bites are avoidable & preventable: pay attention to your snake's body language (once you learn what it means, lol) & develop empathy for this shy snake of yours- he's not after you intentionally & will only bite either out of fear & self-defense, or if you confuse him by smelling like a rat/mouse. I don't think you can blame him for either one, do you? You're a lot bigger & scary to a snake...they assume you're a predator about to EAT them until they learn otherwise, so be patient & handle him gently & with respect. If you do that, you may never find out what his teeth feel like.

    BPs especially can be shy feeders, so before you take off handling him, wait until he's fed about 3 times easily for you at normal intervals BEFORE you handle him. I know it's hard to be patient, but it's easier than trying to get a snake to eat when it's too scared & just won't...trust me on that. Eating is "job #1". Once you get him feeding, you'll have PLENTY of time to make friends & handle him. OK?
    Last edited by Bogertophis; 10-31-2020 at 09:44 PM.
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  9. #7
    Registered User Luvyna's Avatar
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    Re: Gaining confidence with new bp

    Quote Originally Posted by Bogertophis View Post
    As for what the teeth of a harmless snake feel like, just go bump your hand on a holly bush, or do some hand-sewing & poke your hand (not deeply) several times with a needle or straight pins.
    This is very accurate! Once when my snake was yawning I accidentally moved my finger into his mouth and he closed his jaws onto my finger (very gently, it was definitely not a bite and he immediately opened his mouth again like "wtf is this?" lol) Their teeth feel exactly like very thin, very sharp needles. It prickles and it's not pleasant, but any actual damage they could do is very minimal.

    I have also been bitten by my BP once when he struck me thinking I had food for him because I was acting a lot like I do before I feed him when I was actually preparing to clean his enclosure and I didn't read his body language and do anything to let him know it wasn't feeding time before I stuck my hand in. He let go right away and I didn't actually even realize I was bleeding (very minimally) until a few minutes later. A bite from a young BP feels a bit like a slight pinch. Surprising, but the pain is very minimal. Their teeth are so thin and sharp that you won't bleed much and within a few hours you probably won't even be able to tell you were bitten.

    I have been bitten by a rabbit, scratched by cats and chickens, and bitten by a rat, and all of these animals did much more damage than a BP ever could. So in short, you have nothing to worry about I think the worst part of the bite is the jumpscare moment when it happens, it doesn't actually do much damage or hurt much.

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    Re: Gaining confidence with new bp

    I have read a lot on their positions i have changed his water a few times and I have noticed the s shape on him but no strike on him. I was a mechanic for a long time and my hands have had some abuse (spanner rash, hitting with hammer,burns of welder) the normal day at work haha.
    I'm not to bothered about pain and I know its in my head,
    my staffy can do more damage playing.
    I put my hand in and touch him and he flight off to the other side of the viv.
    I have read on how to take thing slow as we are going to be together for a long time.

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    Re: Gaining confidence with new bp

    Id compare a Royal nip to getting pricked by a rose thorn in the garden..


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  13. #10
    BPnet Senior Member dakski's Avatar
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    Re: Gaining confidence with new bp

    Quote Originally Posted by davetyler08 View Post
    I have read a lot on their positions i have changed his water a few times and I have noticed the s shape on him but no strike on him. I was a mechanic for a long time and my hands have had some abuse (spanner rash, hitting with hammer,burns of welder) the normal day at work haha.
    I'm not to bothered about pain and I know its in my head,
    my staffy can do more damage playing.
    I put my hand in and touch him and he flight off to the other side of the viv.
    I have read on how to take thing slow as we are going to be together for a long time.
    Remember, snakes can smell fear.

    JUST KIDDING.

    Seriously, you've been through way worse. BP's are more inclined to ball up than strike anyway, and it doesn't really hurt. It's the speed of the strike that's scary.

    I've had about 15 snakes in my lifetime and been bitten by two. A baby BP that was my fault (scared him), and a juvenile boa, also my fault (food response prior to hook training). The strikes scared me way more than either bite hurt.

    If you are afraid of getting bit, do the following.

    1. Take your BP out when you do cage maintenance. That will avoid either a food confusion bite or a defensive bite while you are rummaging around your BP's cage.

    2. Feed with tongs and at night with the lights dim or out. This will avoid your BP associating your hand with food and also he/she will expect to be handled with the lights on and fed with the lights off. This works for all my snakes really well.

    3. If you want, although I've only done with my boas and my Carpet Python, you can hook train. If you are not sure what this is or how to do it, just ask.

    Good luck, enjoy your BP, and try to not to worry too much. Focus on bonding with him/her rather than worrying about a bite.

    Also, remember, snakes don't hold a grudge, and only bite because they are either hungry or scared. So, if you do get nailed, which sounds unlikely at this point, remember, that doesn't mean it's going to be a pattern.

    Finally, many BP's get startled by their own shadow. My 8 year old BP, Shayna, will bump into my arm and coil back scared half to death. She has never struck at me, but does this often. Don't worry if your BP bumps into something and jerks back, etc. This is pretty normal for them as they are fairly shy creatures.

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