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  1. #1
    Mean Old Gecko Lady Professor Golden Gate Geckos's Avatar
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    Default WARNING ABOUT FEEDING LIVE RODENTS TO SNAKES **graphic**

    My veterinarian, Ken Harkewicz, often posts photos on Facebook about some of the animals he treats. I have permission to use this photo of a snake that was mauled by a live rat left in it's cage overnight. Of course, the snake could not be saved. He says he sees a lot of injuries to reptiles from live rodents and wanted to put the word out for feeding frozen thawed.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Professor robin's Avatar
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    yup i have seen ball pythons with bite marks through their head, flesh bitten off, all kinds of things.
    feeding live is a BIG nono. i generally fee frozen thawed but i will also feed fresh killed as well.

    some times live feeding is necessary if you have an import but it should only be done by experienced keepers and the keeper should always be right there watching the animals and ready to pull the rodent if anything occurs.

    we had a WC adult ball once who only ate live once we fed her and she wrapped the rat but the rat was in the position where it could have taken a chunk out of her neck. so russ got the tongs and broke its teeth off before it had the chance. sounds brutal but for SOME animals it is necessary.

    but for the most part you should always feed frozen thawed or fresh killed. very rare you should feed live

  3. #3
    Member Freshman ancpythons's Avatar
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    I couldnt agree more and great post on keeping us inform.

  4. #4
    GeckoGal Freshman GeckoGal's Avatar
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    poor thing that makes me soooo mad at the owner. great post!
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  5. #5
    Mean Old Gecko Lady Professor Golden Gate Geckos's Avatar
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    I think what suprises me is that it seems like the snake would fight back before allowing itself to be torn apart like that? Apparently, the snake got mauled every time it tried to attack the rat.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Professor robin's Avatar
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    sometimes like ball pythons or boas, they are not hungry, they try to retreat but can only go so far (in captivity). the rodent is trying to what it believes is protecting itself (a snake is a predator). so sometimes the pray will do what it can to try and protect itself.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Junior JordanAng420's Avatar
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    Thank you for posting this Marcia. I went through something similar to this with my w/c ball before he became mine...his previous owner (who were aquaintances of mine, they have like, a million cats...) purchased him for the sole purpose of watching it eat live food. He was given a rat for the first time, and the snake wasn't checked before everyone left the house. Needless to say, I received a frantic phone call when they got home to come treat the bloody snake who looked similar to the picture you posted, and remove the rat from the tank, which was still alive, and still eating the snake when I got there! Instead of removing the rat, I decided to remove the snake from their house, LOL. And I have managed to switch him to frozen-thawed rats in the 2 years I have had him...so there IS hope for some of those w/c imports!
    Maia D. Goldworm, CVT
    Oh, I offended you with my opinions? You should hear the ones I kept to myself.

  8. #8

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    DANG!
    "Who made you God to say,' I'll take your life from you!'"?
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  9. #9
    Senior Member Sophomore leoman777's Avatar
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    WOW! thats why i feed f/t
    leoman is the man

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  10. #10
    Senior Member Sophomore justindh1's Avatar
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    Its not that feeding live rodents is a bad idea, its idiotic people not being responsible for a living creature and keeing a eye on it. What person feeds a live rodent and walks away especting the snake to eat it 100% of the time. Many times the snake is either going into shed or just isn't hungry so it won't eat. Its irresponsibility or lack of knowledge that got this snake dead! Either way it made feel horrible for this snake and other reptiles that have worthless owners.

    Sometimes I have no other choice then to feed a live rodent but they always get a good knock on the head before feeding. They may not be dead but are knock out pretty good.
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