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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a seven year old mexican king snake that ive inherited. he seems to be off his food and is very lethargic. no idea what to do or where to get help any body got any ideas please.....
 

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you may want to check his temps are ok because he may be too cold or too hot
 

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some kings do like it cooler yes..
what sort is he?

try him on a smaller food item too... like a small mouse, or large fluff.

N
 

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hi have you had a chance to look up any caresheets? or read up on any books.
plus depends how long you have had him, it mite be the new home or if he is in shed!
sorry on expert but only tryin to help.

If your worried look round for a good reptile vets near you. Most domestic vets dont deal with reps so you need to find 1 that knows about snakes etc.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hi. Yes i have printed some care sheets off so just a case of searching through them.
I have had him for just under a year.
I believe a care sheet i read said not to be too concerned about it?

Thanks for everyones advice. Any idea what the ideal viv temp should be?
 

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well corn ar between about 80-88 if thats any help. it shoudl tell you in the caresheets.
i know all snakes idffer and some can go a long time without food. hogs can go for a long time. i know 1 thats not eaten for 2 months and its only a baby. how long is it since last feed??
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Its only been 10 days since he ate but hes my first snake so dont know whats normal or not.
I dont think it has anything to do with him being cold as hes staying away from the heat mat :cry:
 

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some snakes start to go off there food at this time of year ...no-one really knows why ...could be throw back to natural instinct...ie . brumation ...but thats only my thoughts . long as he's healthy i would not be overly concerned ...can go months without food . I assume that he is taking water tho .

If in doubt ...always , as stated earlier go to a Herp Vet ....gives peace of mind at least .

Take care
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks again for everyones help.
He also isnt moving much and has stayed at the back of the viv.
Is that common too?

Fingers crossed hes ok :?
 

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well my kings do little moving but i think that apply to most snakes in general
 

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Well i think i did read in a corn book that they can hibernate, so it sounds normal.
I must admit i am taking all mine to a vet. I know they are all babies and hopefully healthy, but i dont care how much its costs i just want peace of mind. Plus i do have 1 thats got kinks in his body and i want to know whats wrong withhim and if what i am doing to care for him is right or wrong. MInd u as he seems ok i dont think i am doing to much wrong - although sum would disagree. HE is 5 wks old and would not eat at all, so i am syringe feeding him, otherwise being a baby and having nothing since birth he may well have died and i couldnt have that.

But 10 days is not long to go without food for a snake that age.

well jsut remember to keep us posted.
 

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Did he have a larger than normal meal last time? Has he poo'd since?

Could he be coming up for a shed?

Could well be the time of year - cooling temps and shorter and shorter days will usually affect their behaviour in some way.
 

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Mexican black kings should be kept in a tank with a warm end of 80-85F. It is not very common for kings to go off their food, they are normally voracious feeders, though it is true that at this time of year a few do lose their interest in food.

Firstly check your temperatures - if he is lethargic he may well be too cold. You say that he is sitting at the back of the tank not doing much, in my experience this isnt typical king behaviour and is something to be a little concerned about.
Other things to consider is if he is going into shed, in which case his appetite should return once he has shed, or if you have changed his food or the way you defrost or present his food.

10 days is nothing to be alarmed about, but it is worth re-evaluating his husbandry as this is not usual behaviour for him.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
SHADEY SHED LAST NIGHT AND APPEARS ALOT HAPPIER NOW ALTHOUGH HE DIDNT FEED, IM GOING TO WAIT TO NEXT FEED DUE AND IF HE DOESNT EAT HAVE FOUND THE NAME OF A GOOD REPTILE VET A BIG THANKS TO ALL YOU GUYS FOR YOUR ADVICE XXXX
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
ONE MORE POTENTIAL PROBLEM (MAYBE) what is the best type of bedding i can use he came to me with sand in his viv(childrens play sand) is this okay or is there something else i should use as he always seems to get his food sandy !!!!
 

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Sand is just about the worst thing to use for any snake - impossible to keep clean as it's not absorbent, can lodged under scales and in nostrils and if it's getting on his food it could cause him big problems internally.

I'd get the sand out of there ASAP and put him on newspaper for now - about 4 layers thick.
Newspaper would be the best thing to keep him on, but it doesn't look that great so you could use beech chip.
You can feed him on beech in the viv but put a large piece of newpaper in there and put the food on that. If he always drags the food off the paper and onto the substrate then best feed him in a separate container.

Basically he has most likely got some sand in his sytem by the sounds of it so it's essential he doesn't get any more substrate of any kind down him.
If he hasn't poo'd in the next couple of days give him a shallow bath in luke warm water for 15-20 mins - if he's a bit constipated due to sand being in his system this may loosen things up a bit.

Lastly - have you got the heat mat on a thermostat?

If the mat isn't controlled he may be avoiding it because it's too hot for him (uncontrolled mats can reach well over 100F) and staying in the cool area which won't do him much good long term..
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
thanks mark . i feel like such a fool, i never wanted the poor wee thing (all 5ft of him) but ive grown very fond of him . i will remove the offending sand tonite when i get home. and the answer to the heat mat yes its not controlled. what should i replace it with ??? i dont mind spending the dosh as long as it does him good. when you say bath him in what ?? a shallow bath in a bowl or should he have the luxory of using my bath xx
 

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i actually keep mine on wood chip if you want a more attracive substrate than newspaper and i have never experienced problems :D
 

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You can still use the heat mat, but you do need to put it on a thermostat - one of these would be fine:

http://www.camzoo.co.uk/pd-1167048544.htm?categoryId=12

Would also be a good idea to cover it with something like a large ceramic tile so that the snake can't come into contact with it, and put some insulating tape around the terminal block (the bit of the mat where the wire attaches) to help prevent any moisture (eg. runny poo) getting in there. make sure it's well stuck down though, otherwise the snake can get stuck to it.
The thermostat has a probe which senses the temp and tells the stat when to switch on and off to keep the temp stable - the probe would sit on top of the tile, or on the surface of the mat if no tile is used.

You'd need a decent mercury or digital thermometer to set the thermostat - you can't rely on the figures on the stats dial, they're rarely, if ever accurate.
If you set the temp over the mat to around 86F/30C this should be fine for him.
Hopefully he's got a couple of hides in there already - put the warm end hide directly over the mat so that he's got one cool hide and one warm.

As for bathing him - you could do it in the bath (rinse it thoroughly before and clean it afterwards) but I prefer to use a large plastic storage box. Most of mine hate having a bath but with the plastic storage box I can just secure the lid to stop them diving out all the time.
 
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