Can Snakes Drown? (Everything You Need To Know!)

Can Snakes Drown

You’re likely to soak your snake at some point to help him hydrate and remain clean. Just remember that issues may occur during the soaking process. Although many people don’t realize it, snakes have lungs that help them breathe. 

Can snakes drown? Since snakes have lungs that help them breathe, they can indeed drown. Snakes are similar to other animals that use their lungs to exchange oxygen. If they’re stuck underwater for too long, they will drown. When bathing your snake, be sure to sure him closely.

Certain snakes live underwater, but snakes in your tank likely do not. Some of the snakes that live underwater are cottonmouth snakes and water snakes. You’ll also have to worry about water moccasins when you go swimming.

Which Snakes Can Swim?

Many people love snakes because they’re unique animals. They have many attributes that attract people to them. Even though they do not have arms, snakes are mobile. They can quickly move around your tank without issues. Plus, you’ll be surprised to learn that snakes can swim.

Some believe that only poisonous snakes can swim. After all, most water snakes are poisonous. Nevertheless, you’ll also find that certain nonpoisonous snakes can also swim. All snakes can swim. They will partially submerge themselves in the water while swimming.

Regardless, you can guarantee that your snake will swim when placed in water. The following snakes are considered water snakes because they primarily live in water.

  • Northern Water Snake
  •  Diamondback Water Snake
  •  Brown Water Snake
  •  Plain Bellied Water Snake
  •  Green Water Snake
  •  Concho Water Snake
  •  Brazos Water Snake
  •  Water Moccasins

How Do Snakes Swim?

You’ll be surprised to learn that snakes are excellent swimmers. Despite not having arms or legs, they can quickly move through the water and reach their destination. Some snakes spend the majority of their lives in water. How do snakes swim?

Snakes will use lateral movements to push their bodies through the water. The moves resemble a wave as the snake moves its body in an S-shape. It uses its tail to push its body through the water. Watching a snake swim is an exciting sight. You can see how the snake uses its body to propel itself forward.

Most snakes do not fully submerge themselves in water. Instead, they tend to float on the surface with their heads slightly above the water. Every snake will swim on top of the water. The only difference with poisonous water snakes is that they will float once they stop.

If a nonpoisonous snake stops, it will begin sinking.

You might be interested in Is Bottled Water Safe for Snakes?

Why Would A Snake Drown?

Besides water snakes, the majority of snakes can indeed drown. Therefore, you must be very careful when placing your snake in water. If you use too much water, there is a risk that your snake is going to drown when you’re not looking.

Water snakes usually won’t have this problem, but they’re not kept as pets. With this in mind, you should ensure that your pet snake doesn’t drown. Snakes can drown in captivity if the water bowl is too deep or has steep edges.

Unfortunately, this will make it difficult for the snake to escape the bowl in case of an accident. Prevent this by choosing an appropriate bowl and adding only a little water. Make sure that your snake can escape if it begins drowning.

It is also a good idea to keep a close eye on the snake while it bathes. Then, you’ll be able to help it if something happens.

Snakes Can Hold Their Breath

When bathing your snake, you should stay close by at all times. Doing so ensures that you can rectify problems before they worsen. The good news is that you should have time to fix the problem before the snake dies.

Snakes can hold their breath underwater. If they’re relaxed and not physically active, they should be able to hold their breath for several minutes or longer. Although it depends on the snake, some can hold their breath underwater for an hour.

However, you will likely have a few minutes to spot and fix the problem. Snakes will do whatever it takes to survive in any situation. When necessary, the snake will hold its breath and attempt to survive while underwater. If you’re quick enough, you should be able to prevent problems.

You’ll have a few minutes at the very least, so don’t delay. Always keep an eye on your pet to avoid issues. You’ll love watching a snake swim when you’re at home or at your local park. Just make sure it doesn’t turn deadly.

Careful Monitoring

Snakes enjoy frolicking in the water. These reptiles go far and beyond to access water in their natural environment. Owners must try to keep up this routine by turning their bathtub into a temporary waterhole for their snakes.

The relationship between a snake and its owner may seem a bit strange. This is especially true for those who have ophidiophobia or a fear of snakes. In the meantime, the snake and its owner’s relationship grow tighter by the day.

Before putting your snake in the bathtub, you must know the risks. One particular risk that comes to mind regarding a snake and water is drowning. The theory is to keep the water to a minimum of no more than two inches in depth.

Like a parent, an owner should never leave their snake unattended in a water bathtub. You should stay put even if the depth is between one and two inches.

Use Or Not Use Tap Water

Most reptiles, including snakes, are generally okay to swim or bask in tap water. Water treatment plants utilize a purification process to remove impurities from incoming water sources.

If you have any safety concerns, you should test your tap water. This is a simple process that checks the pH level.

Conclusion: Can snakes drown?

Snakes can swim through water. If you’re going to raise a pet snake, you should consider putting your snake in water every so often. Soaking the snake is an excellent way to help it during the shedding process. Plus, the snake is going to enjoy soaking in the water.

You can likely put your snake in the bathtub if you don’t use too much water. After all, snakes can swim on their own. However, you don’t want to put your snake in harm’s way. Therefore, you should keep a close eye on the snake while it is in the water.

Can snakes down? They can, so you must be ready to save them. Stay by the bowl or tub so you’re prepared for potential issues.



I'm Jennifer Mecham, worked for 7 years in an animal shelter in New York. I created this blog to educate people about these amazing creatures and to show them that reptiles can make great pets. Join me on this journey as we explore the world of reptiles.

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