August 3, 2020
Starting Out as Snake Owner
Not all snakes are the same. Some grow to be enormous and eat live rabbits; others stay small and dine on crickets. Here are some tips for choosing and caring for a pet snake.SourceIt's generally recommended that you obtain your snake from domesticated stock, as wild snakes may be illegal to keep and hard to tame.BreedFor beginners, a docile snake that doesn't get too large is best. Corn snakes are generally very easy to handle. King snakes and milk snakes are also docile. These snakes usually grow to about 4 feet in length. Ball pythons, while considered fairly easy to handle, can grow to enormous sizes and eat tremendous amounts of food. Setting up Your Snake's Living SpaceExperts recommend a glass tank for snakes, because it retains heat better than a cage. Go for a tank that is as long as your snake's body if possible, or at least 2/3 of its length.The best type of top is a locking screen that allows air circulation but doesn't allow your snake to escape. If the tank you have doesn't have that type of top, then make sure the top allows air to circulate, and weight it down properly.Snakes need to get their skin into water as well as drink it to stay hydrated. So your snake's water dish should be large and heavy enough to allow the snake to coil its body into the water on occasion. BeddingSnake bedding looks a lot like mulch, and it pretty much is - it holds moisture and gives traction. Every month or so, you'll need to change the bedding entirely. TemperatureThis is one of the most important elements of a snake's habitat. It must be warm at all times, but not too warm, so you'll need a thermometer to keep track of the temperature. Don't leave the thermometer in the tank, as it might break.Heat SourceYou will need a heat source, such as a dome or shop light. Experts recommend having it on about 8-10 hours a day, just like sunlight. FoodNot all snakes eat the same things. Small rodents or crickets are common fare, and the breeder or pet shop can tell you which food is correct. Generally speaking, snakes only eat about once every week. AccessoriesSnakes need something to rub their skin against, such as wood, large sticks, and appropriate foliage are good choices. Your snake will also need a place to "bask," or lie in the heat source. A rock or piece of wood can work.
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