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Hi,
I鈥檓 hoping someone here can help me. I have a corn snake that won鈥檛 eat 馃槥
He鈥檚 about 12 years old and has been living with me for about 5 years now, my brother owned him since he got him from a private breeder as a baby.
I don鈥檛 know anything about snakes I鈥檓 afraid other than what I鈥檝e learnt through having this one (his name is Sid)
I think he鈥檚 a corn morph?? He鈥檚 nearly 7ft so everyone I鈥檝e spoken with said a standard corn shouldn鈥檛 be that big.
Anyway, I鈥檝e never had an issue with him in these 5 years and neither has my brother before me, but it鈥檚 been over 2 months, nearly 3 since he鈥檚 eaten anything now.
I鈥檝e done all the usual things that corn snake guides suggest regarding his tank, temp, humidity etc. I鈥檝e tried dangling and teasing him with the his mouse, I鈥檝e switched brands and I鈥檝e even tried smaller size mice and he鈥檚 just not interested at all! It鈥檚 like it鈥檚 not even there and he鈥檚 quite happy for the mouse to bop him in the face and he just isn鈥檛 fussed.
He鈥檚 his usual happy friendly self, quite active still, he鈥檚 drinking fine, going to the toilet fine and he doesn鈥檛 look like he鈥檚 drastically lost much weight although he is a little slimmer down his back now compared to before.
I鈥檝e checked him for parasites, injuries, blockages, listened to his breathing and can鈥檛 see anything out of the ordinary, but like a said, I鈥檓 no snake expert.
If anyone has any input I鈥檇 be so grateful! Our closest specialist vet is over an hours drive away but I鈥檝e seen a few people say that sometimes vets take quite direct and invasive action with not not great results for the snake. If he wasn鈥檛 being his normal self I would have taken him for sure by now, but like I said he鈥檚 just being his normal self and doing everything danger noodles normally do, except for eating.
Please help because I absolutely adore him and I really don鈥檛 know what else to try without a trip to the vet.
 

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Hi,
I鈥檓 hoping someone here can help me. I have a corn snake that won鈥檛 eat 馃槥
He鈥檚 about 12 years old and has been living with me for about 5 years now, my brother owned him since he got him from a private breeder as a baby.
I don鈥檛 know anything about snakes I鈥檓 afraid other than what I鈥檝e learnt through having this one (his name is Sid)
I think he鈥檚 a corn morph?? He鈥檚 nearly 7ft so everyone I鈥檝e spoken with said a standard corn shouldn鈥檛 be that big.
Anyway, I鈥檝e never had an issue with him in these 5 years and neither has my brother before me, but it鈥檚 been over 2 months, nearly 3 since he鈥檚 eaten anything now.
I鈥檝e done all the usual things that corn snake guides suggest regarding his tank, temp, humidity etc. I鈥檝e tried dangling and teasing him with the his mouse, I鈥檝e switched brands and I鈥檝e even tried smaller size mice and he鈥檚 just not interested at all! It鈥檚 like it鈥檚 not even there and he鈥檚 quite happy for the mouse to bop him in the face and he just isn鈥檛 fussed.
He鈥檚 his usual happy friendly self, quite active still, he鈥檚 drinking fine, going to the toilet fine and he doesn鈥檛 look like he鈥檚 drastically lost much weight although he is a little slimmer down his back now compared to before.
I鈥檝e checked him for parasites, injuries, blockages, listened to his breathing and can鈥檛 see anything out of the ordinary, but like a said, I鈥檓 no snake expert.
If anyone has any input I鈥檇 be so grateful! Our closest specialist vet is over an hours drive away but I鈥檝e seen a few people say that sometimes vets take quite direct and invasive action with not not great results for the snake. If he wasn鈥檛 being his normal self I would have taken him for sure by now, but like I said he鈥檚 just being his normal self and doing everything danger noodles normally do, except for eating.
Please help because I absolutely adore him and I really don鈥檛 know what else to try without a trip to the vet.
So you've got a 7' 12 year old corn snake that you've had for 5 years and you know nothing about snakes.....Really ?

Have a read of the sticky post at the top of this section on basic care of a corn snake

7' is exceptional for a corn snake, so either you have overestimated its length, or if its a true measurement (you can't go by shed skin) then it's a hybrid cross with some other rat snake. A picture would help clarify things.

Assuming its not an age thing or related to husbandry or illness, then its breeding season and perfectly natural for a Corn snake to be off food
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Wow! Thanks for that Malc! You are precisely the reason why I鈥檝e been putting off asking for help in here sooner.
And that鈥檚 all I鈥檝e done by the way, ask for genuine help, as I鈥檝e stated and as you seem to be questioning, I know nothing about snakes other than what I鈥檝e learnt from having Sid living with me for 5 years, which isn鈥檛 much because he鈥檚 been so easy to look after so I鈥檝e been able get by with the basic corn snake care guide stuff. He does measure nearly 7 foot last time I checked, and again as I stated people told me he probably isn鈥檛 a standard corn snake and is some kind of morph, I looked up what morph means and it鈥檚 some kind of a cross breed but I wouldn鈥檛 know what with and my brother doesn鈥檛 have the info for the private breeder he got him from so I doubt we will ever really know for sure.
I鈥檓 not sure what your problem is with all that and there definitely was no need to be so unwelcoming to someone asking for advice.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Not sure if anyone can tell me what he鈥檚 morphed with maybe?

His tank is 24 at the hot end, 18 at the cool. He has a heat lamp rather than a heat pad thing under the floor. Loads of places to hide and move around. I use aspen bedding because he likes to burrow down and make himself tunnels and things. He has a big water bowl that he likes to dip himself in so there鈥檚 also a second small bowl I put in that he uses to drink from instead.
When he was eating he had a large mouse every 4-6 days (he usually lets me know when he鈥檚 hungry) and he sheds every 2-3 weeks although it鈥檚 been maybe 4-5 weeks since his last shed.
Please be kind if you spot something I鈥檓 doing wrong. I鈥檝e been going off intuition and google up until now so I鈥檓 probably doing something wrong.
 

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Wow! Thanks for that Malc! You are precisely the reason why I鈥檝e been putting off asking for help in here sooner.
And that鈥檚 all I鈥檝e done by the way, ask for genuine help, as I鈥檝e stated and as you seem to be questioning, I know nothing about snakes other than what I鈥檝e learnt from having Sid living with me for 5 years, which isn鈥檛 much because he鈥檚 been so easy to look after so I鈥檝e been able get by with the basic corn snake care guide stuff. He does measure nearly 7 foot last time I checked, and again as I stated people told me he probably isn鈥檛 a standard corn snake and is some kind of morph, I looked up what morph means and it鈥檚 some kind of a cross breed but I wouldn鈥檛 know what with and my brother doesn鈥檛 have the info for the private breeder he got him from so I doubt we will ever really know for sure.
I鈥檓 not sure what your problem is with all that and there definitely was no need to be so unwelcoming to someone asking for advice.
With all due respect, when someone says they own a snake but "no nothing about snakes" then that is enough to make people get extremely defensive. It is really frustrating when people own a pet but no nothing about the animal because it always ends up with the animal suffering in some way. However, if you would like to learn more then please post more info on your setup/husbandry and we can help you establish if everything is OK for your cornsnake.



A morph is not a 'cross breed' (there are no breeds in snakes) but a hybrid is a cross of two species. Most cornsnakes nowadays are morphs or have some sort of het for a morph, it's harder to find a corn with no morphs in it. Post a picture and we can have a look for you (although still won't be 100% accurate without knowing the genetics.

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Not sure if anyone can tell me what he鈥檚 morphed with maybe?

His tank is 24 at the hot end, 18 at the cool. He has a heat lamp rather than a heat pad thing under the floor. Loads of places to hide and move around. I use aspen bedding because he likes to burrow down and make himself tunnels and things. He has a big water bowl that he likes to dip himself in so there鈥檚 also a second small bowl I put in that he uses to drink from instead.
When he was eating he had a large mouse every 4-6 days (he usually lets me know when he鈥檚 hungry) and he sheds every 2-3 weeks although it鈥檚 been maybe 4-5 weeks since his last shed.
Please be kind if you spot something I鈥檓 doing wrong. I鈥檝e been going off intuition and google up until now so I鈥檓 probably doing something wrong.
Looks like a normal corn to me, often called Carolina or wild type. It most likely is het for other morphs but you won't know unless you have its genetic history available.

Your temps are too low, 28-30c hot spot. What are you using to measure the temps? Are you using a thermostat.

You are also feeding him way way too much! 1 large mouse every 7-10 days is perfectly fine.

No need for two water bowls, 1 water bowl is enough.

Have a read of the cornsnake care sheets available.

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Wow! Thanks for that Malc! You are precisely the reason why I鈥檝e been putting off asking for help in here sooner.
And that鈥檚 all I鈥檝e done by the way, ask for genuine help,
Apologies, but we get a lot of trolls that start with a first post like this, especially with the kids off on lockdown.

Trust me.... I wouldn't be bothered about him not eating, he is one fat corn snake !!!

The hot end temps need raising - 28c - 32c is ideal

A large mouse every 4/5 days - you've been over feeding him (which shows in the first image !) Adult corns would normally be 7-10 day feeds.

He is a big snake I grant you that... using the 4 way adaptor as a guide around the 5' mark. What size enclosure is he in?

Personally cut down his feeding. Offer him a meal in three to four weeks time. If he has regained his appetite then leave it at that. Offer him another mouse 10-14 days later, and stick with that regime. Unlike humans, snakes don't burn off fat reserves as fast, and sometimes once a snake becomes large due to overfeeding they never really absorb the fat deposits.
 

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With all due respect, when someone says they own a snake but "no nothing about snakes" then that is enough to make people get extremely defensive. It is really frustrating when people own a pet but no nothing about the animal because it always ends up with the animal suffering in some way.
You hit the nail on the head there

I know I seem to be getting a reputation for being a tad like Victor Meldrew (must be an age thing), but it was the fact that the OP stated they have had the snake 5 years and still know nothing about them. 40 years ago information was less easy to find, but these days with google on tap its information overload... so how people can still manage to get the basics so wrong flabbergasts me !! - Added the statement that the snake is 7' led me to feel that this is just another troll, hence my defensive sarcastic post.... (for which I've apologised for).
 

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Discussion Starter #11
With all due respect, when someone says they own a snake but "no nothing about snakes" then that is enough to make people get extremely defensive. It is really frustrating when people own a pet but no nothing about the animal because it always ends up with the animal suffering in some way.

You don鈥檛 know the circumstances surrounding how I ended up looking after him for my brother and it wasn鈥檛 supposed to be long term, but alas I fell in love with him and after meeting with several weirdo鈥檚 online that responded to my enquiries about rehoming him, I decided he was definitely better off with me!
I understand you only have the snakes welfare in mind but I assure you I鈥檝e read more about them than any beginner snake owner has and yes I鈥檝e had to learn on the job so to speak, but isn鈥檛 that what ever person does the first time they take on a new animal??? I could google snake care until I鈥檓 blue in the face but eventually the only way for me to become experienced is to actually own one and have practical experience that no book can ever give me. I would NEVER let him suffer!
 

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Hi, don't worry about him not eating, he's very fat and missing a few meals won't hurt him but I'd get the hot spot temp a bit higher 28c-30c. Also if you viv is I'm guessing a 4ft one then he is only around 5ft not 7ft :)
 

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You don鈥檛 know the circumstances surrounding how I ended up looking after him for my brother and it wasn鈥檛 supposed to be long term, but alas I fell in love with him and after meeting with several weirdo鈥檚 online that responded to my enquiries about rehoming him, I decided he was definitely better off with me!
I understand you only have the snakes welfare in mind but I assure you I鈥檝e read more about them than any beginner snake owner has and yes I鈥檝e had to learn on the job so to speak, but isn鈥檛 that what ever person does the first time they take on a new animal??? I could google snake care until I鈥檓 blue in the face but eventually the only way for me to become experienced is to actually own one and have practical experience that no book can ever give me. I would NEVER let him suffer!
You are correct, we don't know the circumstances on how you came to be looking after a 12 year old snake for the past five years.... but you didn't tell us that from the offset. We will formulate an opinion that dictates how we reply based on what we read from your first post.

If you has said that five years ago due to personal matters you took charge of your brothers cornsnake that was 7 years old at the time, and that you simply followed what advice he passed on, then we may have responded differently.

Anyway, put all that behind us and lets move on.

If you could please answer the following questions we can then post up our opinions and you can pick through them.

1 - Details on the enclosure, its dimensions and where its housed (the cold side is low for the UK at this time of year)
2 - What form of heating are you using and is it thermostatically controlled
3 - How are you taking the temperature readings. The use of an IR laser temperature gun is recommended (as per the guide i hinted at)
4 - Can you weigh the snake (place it in a pillow case, weigh it, then weigh the pillow case and deduct its weight form the combined weight to get the weight of the snake)

The snake does indeed look like a standard "normal" Carolina cornsnake. It could be a hybrid, but without knowing its parents, that will be impossible to tell. The only reason I say that is if the snake is indeed 7' then it would be an exceptional example as the average size is between 5' and 6', most falling around the 5' 6" mark. A 6' corn is rare, but there has been some documented examples.
 

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You don鈥檛 know the circumstances surrounding how I ended up looking after him for my brother and it wasn鈥檛 supposed to be long term, but alas I fell in love with him and after meeting with several weirdo鈥檚 online that responded to my enquiries about rehoming him, I decided he was definitely better off with me!
I understand you only have the snakes welfare in mind but I assure you I鈥檝e read more about them than any beginner snake owner has and yes I鈥檝e had to learn on the job so to speak, but isn鈥檛 that what ever person does the first time they take on a new animal??? I could google snake care until I鈥檓 blue in the face but eventually the only way for me to become experienced is to actually own one and have practical experience that no book can ever give me. I would NEVER let him suffer!
That's fine but as malc said, if you come onto a forum of people that are constantly bombarded with people not knowing how to keep pets and mistreating them and the first thing you say is "I've had this snake for 5 years but know nothing about snakes" then expect to be grilled because we care about the snakes welfare and quite frankly can't stand people that get a pet without researching it, not saying that's what you've done, I'm just explaining how what you said can be taken out of context and get peoples backs up.

Anyway, malc has raised some really good questions which could definitely help you out :)

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Not sure if anyone can tell me what he鈥檚 morphed with maybe?

His tank is 24 at the hot end, 18 at the cool. He has a heat lamp rather than a heat pad thing under the floor. Loads of places to hide and move around. I use aspen bedding because he likes to burrow down and make himself tunnels and things. He has a big water bowl that he likes to dip himself in so there鈥檚 also a second small bowl I put in that he uses to drink from instead.
When he was eating he had a large mouse every 4-6 days (he usually lets me know when he鈥檚 hungry) and he sheds every 2-3 weeks although it鈥檚 been maybe 4-5 weeks since his last shed.
Please be kind if you spot something I鈥檓 doing wrong. I鈥檝e been going off intuition and google up until now so I鈥檓 probably doing something wrong.
That's a normal Carolina corn & a particularly nice one.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I think you need to re-read my original post because I did say he鈥檚 12 years old, I鈥檝e had him 5 years and my brother before that from being a baby.
I鈥檝e never felt so attached and unwelcome and judged!
People told me reptile forums were not a nice place and I guess I learnt my lesson the lesson the hard and unfair way.
All I wanted was advice on my snake and thinking snake owners are probably more informed than vets, I stupidly thought people here would want to help, not bash and make people leave this forum because they feel so crap about themselves and end up not seek the advice they needed to begin with.
I wonder how many other people have felt the same as me and didn鈥檛 bother sticking around for advice and the snake did end up being the one to suffer as a result of its owner feeling unwelcome by the very community they thought would want to support and teach and pass on their own wisdom. Such a shame.
 

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I think you need to re-read my original post because I did say he鈥檚 12 years old, I鈥檝e had him 5 years and my brother before that from being a baby.
I鈥檝e never felt so attached and unwelcome and judged!
People told me reptile forums were not a nice place and I guess I learnt my lesson the lesson the hard and unfair way.
All I wanted was advice on my snake and thinking snake owners are probably more informed than vets, I stupidly thought people here would want to help, not bash and make people leave this forum because they feel so crap about themselves and end up not seek the advice they needed to begin with.
I wonder how many other people have felt the same as me and didn鈥檛 bother sticking around for advice and the snake did end up being the one to suffer as a result of its owner feeling unwelcome by the very community they thought would want to support and teach and pass on their own wisdom. Such a shame.
No one has been particularly nasty. & you have after all, been given the advice you asked for.
 

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I think you need to re-read my original post because I did say he鈥檚 12 years old, I鈥檝e had him 5 years and my brother before that from being a baby.
I鈥檝e never felt so attached and unwelcome and judged!
People told me reptile forums were not a nice place and I guess I learnt my lesson the lesson the hard and unfair way.
All I wanted was advice on my snake and thinking snake owners are probably more informed than vets, I stupidly thought people here would want to help, not bash and make people leave this forum because they feel so crap about themselves and end up not seek the advice they needed to begin with.
I wonder how many other people have felt the same as me and didn鈥檛 bother sticking around for advice and the snake did end up being the one to suffer as a result of its owner feeling unwelcome by the very community they thought would want to support and teach and pass on their own wisdom. Such a shame.
Nobody is being unwelcoming to you , malc has apologised for jumping the gun and I have explained why people on forums are quick to get so defensive.

Either way, we have said that we are happy to help and advise if you could just kindly answer the above questions which are only being asked to help you and your snake.



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I think you can lower the hackles.
If you have been keeping this snake for 5 years then you presumably know at least the basics on keeping him.
Your temperatures are too low.
While they are a tolerant snake they do still need the right warmth.
24 at the hot end is way too cold as you have already een advised.
So first off, increase the temperature.
Secondly if he is male it could just be the time of year when he is more interested in mating than eating. Person ally I have never had a male snake refuse food in the breeding season, but I guess I've just been lucky.
I would suggest you simply change the heater to either a baking lamp or a ceramic, along with the correct thermostat, so you can get that warm end up to a good 30 or even 32 C. Leave him be, make sure there is fresh water, and in a few weeks he should start again.
On the odd occasion I have had an adult stop eating I have always found a defrosted pink gets them going again.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I鈥檓 going to try this again because it鈥檚 gotten out of hand and I just want help for my snake.

Thank you Malc for your private message and encouraging me to pursue the forum where I know I will get better advice than just googling which is what I鈥檝e been doing for weeks now, but sadly google will only tell me so much.
I do understand why you鈥檇 all be defensive if you have been trolled the way you said you have, I didn鈥檛 think or know there were idiots out there wasting time on snake forums just for a laugh.
I can promise you I aren鈥檛 a troll! Just an anxious newbie. I鈥檝e tried to be honest and I have explained that beyond knowing MY snake, I know nothing else, hence why I鈥檓 here to ask for help.
I know my snake very well and know what鈥檚 his 鈥渘ormal鈥 but I don鈥檛 know if that鈥檚 normal for corn snakes in general and I didn鈥檛 want to presume I know more than what a beginner knows, hence why I said I don鈥檛 know about snakes 馃徎
I鈥檝e only learnt what I have from google etc, and from what Sid (the snake) has taught me from having to take care of him the last five years, which to be honest hasn鈥檛 been much because he鈥檚 been such an easy snake to deal with.
So I apologise if how I portrayed my snake knowledge was wrong or misled people.

Back to Sid......his tank is 6 foot by 3 foot deep and 4 foot tall. It was a custom built tank for lizards of some kind before I got it.
I use an infrared basking heat bulb attached to a thermostat.
I was told a couple years ago I had his temp too high. I had asked the staff at pets at home while I was in there picking up cat food because Sid had become really really active, climbing the walls and seemed like he just wanted to get out his tank.
I鈥檓 not a massive fan of pets at home and their advice but the man said he was an experienced snake handler so he knew more than me. He said he thought it was that Sid was either too hot or horny, and the easiest way to tell was to adjust the temp first and see what happened. So I turned his temp down and he did calm down and seem less desperate to get out of his tank. That was a couple years ago now so he鈥檚 been living at the cooler temps for a while now.
I have put his temp back up today following advice.
To record the temps I have little digital probe thermometers at both the hot end and the cool end just above the substrate level.
His tank is on an internal wall away from any obvious draughty spots or direct sunlight.
I have changed nothing about his set up for the last 2 years and his tank has been in the same place since I got him.
The only thing that has changed is that now it鈥檚 nicer weather, a small window in his half of the room has had the curtain closed half way during the day to keep the room cool enough for me to work in.
Could his daylight/night hours be putting him off and messing with his routine?
That鈥檚 the only thing that has changed in the last 6 weeks, but he stopped eating long before that.
I haven鈥檛 tried him with any food for 2 weeks now and I鈥檝e already tried pinkies with him a month ago.
 
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