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  1. #1
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    Snake lost scales during shed?

    Hello there!
    Me and my roomie are relatively new to snake keeping. We got our beautiful, 5 y/o Rigatoni only a few months back.

    One thing we've been struggling with was getting him to eat regularly because he's still adapting to his new environment. We went to the vet and he reassured us that he's healthy otherwise and we've actually had some success feeding recently!
    Now he just finished his second shed with us!
    The first time he didn't respond to the humidity box we'd put in his enclosure and had a bit of a bad shed so we gave him a bath and it worked out well.
    This time, he actually shed in one piece so I was really happy at first! But then we noticed that he has some wounds where he apparently lost some scales?

    Here's some pictures (sorry for the bad quality/small size, I don't really understand how uploading images works yet)



    We're not quite sure what happened and we don't really know what to do... Should we go see the vet? Or is something wrong with the way we're keeping him?
    We would have liked to try feeding him again today or tomorrow but now I'm unsure.

    ~Anne

  2. #2
    BPnet Veteran Bogertophis's Avatar
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    Welcome! Love the name "Rigatoni"-

    It's really hard to see the scale loss you're asking about, really need larger & close-up photos. It might be that he scraped hard enough on something rough in his cage to do damage to a few scales, though it's not common. If there's only a few- & you do describe them as "wounds"- I wouldn't worry about running to the vet- you can use a small amount of topical antiseptic such as Vetericyn* to help with the healing IF there are actual raw areas, otherwise his subsequent sheds will take care of it in time. Listen, we all skinned our knees when we were growing up & survived- this is pretty much the equivalent thing in snakes. I assume there's no bleeding from these wounds? His scales are likely to have been scabbed previously & you just didn't notice until they came off with the shed. You can't prevent that, & they may or may not grow back in. *If open "raw" wounds- you can also dab on some povidone-iodine (Betadine) or a tiny bit of NON- pain relief Neosporin, but be aware that Neosporin ointment (made for human use) has a petroleum jelly base that can cause shedding issues if more than a tiny bit is used- otherwise, in a pinch, it's safe for a snake. Vetericyn is MADE for reptile/pet use, & is a water-based ointment- available online or in many pet stores.

    You might check his cage furnishings to see if there's any sharp edges- some people buy "castles", "skulls" & other fancy items in pet stores that are intended for tropical fish (only!) and there are very sharp projections inside them that your snake can get cut up on. Snakes have also gotten stuck in some of these things, so just a head's-up in case you're using anything like that- take it out. Not seeing your set-up, but it's for you to "play detective".
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

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    Thank you so much for your answer! I'm relieved that it seems to not be too bad I've attached a close up picture, I hope that helps to see it more clearly. I don't have a better quality picture unfortunately.
    [IMG][/IMG]

    The skin is raw and red at these spots but it's not really bleeding.
    I will also look into getting some Vetericyn!
    We only have hides designed for snakes but we'll definitely check for edges again.

    Thank you so much!

    ~Anne

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    BPnet Veteran Bogertophis's Avatar
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    Re: Snake lost scales during shed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rigatoni View Post
    Thank you so much for your answer! I'm relieved that it seems to not be too bad I've attached a close up picture, I hope that helps to see it more clearly. I don't have a better quality picture unfortunately.
    [IMG][/IMG]

    The skin is raw and red at these spots but it's not really bleeding.
    I will also look into getting some Vetericyn!
    We only have hides designed for snakes but we'll definitely check for edges again.

    Thank you so much!

    ~Anne
    Yes, that photo helps. It looks just like where a previously damaged & scabbed scale came off with his latest shed- that's why it's red but not bleeding. It likely bled a little bit initially, but you missed it, & it's hard to see on his coloration, so don't beat yourself up too much, lol. You can expect that he might shed a little more often for a while now- that's what snakes do when they have something that needs healing- they re-shed to heal it faster.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

  5. The Following User Says Thank You to Bogertophis For This Useful Post:

    Toad37 (11-14-2020)

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