Reptile Forums banner
1 - 7 of 7 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, I'm new on here but I could do with a bit of advice.

First off, I will be taking her to the vet, I'll try to get her there tomorrow but if anyone has any ideas as to what could be wrong I'd love to hear them.

I've had my Cali King for 15yrs, since she was a hatchling. In all that time I've had no problems with her except in the first couple of month when she developed a respiratory infection and the vet treated her with Baytril and it cleared up fine.

Anyway, she has always fed really well, never refusing a feed. She's fed F/T medium/large mice. She has always shed very well, in one piece with eyecaps intact. In all she's been a perfect snake. She's now just under 5ft long and well muscled.

However, in the last month she has begun to act strangely. She has stopped using her hides, drinks more than she used to and rarely seems to rest. If she were a mammal I'd say she was constantly pacing her cage. She has refused the last three feeds, except a tiny fuzzy I got her to eat a couple of weeks ago. She used to strike feed very enthusiastically every week but now she acts like she is afraid of the food. This morning I've noticed she's had diarrhea over night, not a lot, she hasn't eaten recently but it's enough to worry me as it hasn't happened before. It's brown, not green but very small with a watery brown smear on the newspaper she's kept on.

Her environment hasn't changed. Temps are 29 degrees at the hot end and 24 at the cool end. She's kept on newspaper and has access to two hides. One of the hides is a piece of cork bark which she has always had but the last couple of days she's been rubbing her head on it as if she's trying to shed but she shed last week and I checked carefully and no scales or eye caps were left behind. I can't see any mites and have looked carefully for those. She has also been rubbing herself on the glass doors for the last week as though she is constantly trying to get out. This behaviour started about a month ago but is getting worse.

As I said, I will get her to a vet, but I was wondering, do snakes get things like kidney disease, dementia or anything like that as they get older? Is 15 old? I remember when I first got her being told she could easily make 25yrs but I have read recently that 15-18 is more likely.

She's not my only snake, I have a 3yr old CRB, a 9mnth old Royal and three corn hatchlings. Obviously I'm being very careful not to spread any potential infections around and the other snakes all appear healthy, with normal behaviour, bowel movements and feeding.

Any help will be appreciated.

P.s. Sorry for the rambling post, I'm just worried about my poor snake.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,619 Posts
calis can live rarely to 25 years but more often than not 15 - 20 is more like it. something has changed to make her act like she is after all this time, have you moved her viv to a place where she gets natural light, if so she could be getting ready to hibernate and this would be sparked by the shorter day lengths. Has she been hibernated before ? Run your thumb down her underside feeling for any lumps or bumps , she is at an age now where things could happen like tumors. you could offer her small mice as they get older the size of food they can cope with changes, anyway I hope alls okay with her in the end and she does make the 25 year top end.
ian
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the reply.

No, her viv hasn't changed. She does normally go into brumation, however, she normally goes very quiet and inactive, this hyper activity is unusual for her. I can't feel any lumps, I guess there could be something like that, I just can't feel it. I wasn't as concerned until I saw the diarrhoea today, she's not had that before. Could that be a final emptying of her gut before brumation?

Is is worth taking her to the vet anyway?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
745 Posts
I'd take her to a vet- if you've had her for 15 years and you haven't seen this behavior before, I'd be fairly concerned, especially given her age.

Hopefully everything is fine, but as she is an old snake it is also possible that something serious could be developing, such as an organ failure (worst case scenario!!!) and if it were my snake I'd had that long I'd probably be a little paranoid tbh.

You're obviously worried enough to make a post about it, and you've not seen the diarrhea before so I'd have said a vet trip would be a very good idea, at least to put your mind at rest.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the reply. I think I will take her to the vet. Hopefully, it is just her being a bit odd before brumation but I think I will get her checked out just in case.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,146 Posts
I also have a Cali King who is 15 years old, mine has had the odd bits of diahorea (sorry about the spelling) in the past but it usually just clears itself up.

The behaviour your describing certainly is strange and is worth further investigation. At this time of year Cali's should be calming down ready for brumation, mine is now refusing mice and just curled up at one end of the Viv.

I believe Cali's can live anywhere between 15-25 years, though I wouldnt know the average.

Best of luck at the vet.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the reply.

She's OK now. No more diarrhoea. Turns out she just wanted to go I to brumation. The viv was too hot which I think is why she was trying to get out all the time. I've turned the temp down and she seemed to settle straight away. I will keep a close eye on her over the next few weeks. I feel pretty stupid, I aught to know better after 15 yrs.

Thanks for the help guys.
 
1 - 7 of 7 Posts
Top