Feeding your snake can be fun, especially if you’re using live feeders. However, there is always a chance that you’re going to run into unexpected issues. If your snake isn’t eager to eat, there is a risk that the rat will chew on it. What should you do if a rat chews on your snake?
If a rat has chewed on your snake, start by cleaning the wound using water and antibacterial soap. Apply a little antibiotic ointment to the impacted area. Alternatively, you can use povidone iodine ointment. In some cases, the wound might be too severe to treat on your own.
Depending on the severity of the wound, it may be essential to take your pet to a local vet. Remember that not all vets are capable of treating snakes. Therefore, you’ll need to find a qualified reptile veterinarian in your area.
Below, you’ll find out more about dealing with a snake that has been chewed on by a rat.
Should You Feed Your Snake Live Feeders?
Should you consider feeding live feeders to your snake? Most people like the idea because they enjoy watching their slithering snake hunt and consume the mouse. However, live food is not necessary for snakes to thrive.
In reality, snakes do not need live food to remain healthy. One issue is that some snakes aren’t eager to eat dead food. They may accept rats that have been killed prior to feeding. It will likely take time and effort to get your snake to accept dead animals.
By not feeding your snake live food, there will never be a risk that a rat chewed on your snake. Nevertheless, there are safer ways to feed snakes live food without running into issues.
How To Safely Feed Live Food To Your Snake?
To feed live food to your snake, it is pertinent to do so cautiously. Otherwise, you may find yourself dealing with a wounded snake. You may believe that you should hold the mouse over the snake so it can strike it, but you’re likely going to end up with a nasty bite.
Furthermore, the mouse will be more likely to bite your snake because it is terrified of being held. Instead, you should place the mouse in the tank with the snake and wait. Be sure to carefully monitor the situation because anything can happen.
Always be sure to feed and rehydrate the mice before adding them to the tank. Also, let the rodent stay in the same room as the snake for 30 minutes or an hour to entice it. The mice should always be the right size. If the snake hasn’t eaten in 10 to 15 minutes, remove the rodent.
Consider Training Your Snake To Eat Dead Prey
Feeding live prey to your snake can lead to numerous issues. The rodent will experience severe psychological stress when it is being hunted. Imagine being chased around an aquarium by a massive snake. It wouldn’t be fun. Instead, it is wise to teach your snake to accept dead prey.
Feeding dead prey tends to be safer and more human since the prey won’t fight back. Although it may take practice and patience, you should teach your snake to accept dead prey. Doing so will make it significantly easier to feed the snake with minimal risks.
It is common for snakes to eat freshly killed mice, thawed prey, and prey that has been previously frozen. There is no need to kill the animal on your own. Instead, many pet stores sell freshly killed rodents and frozen rodents. It is best to feed your snake prey that won’t fight back.
Rat bites should be treated with the utmost importance. Rats carry a variety of diseases, including Leptospirosis, plague, and Salmonellosis. Rat diseases are spread through vectors and bites.
Natural rat bite treatment is ideal for snakes. It is recommended to implement a natural treatment, advancing to a prescription treatment if no improvement is noted.
The first step is to stop the bleeding. Apply gauze with eucalyptus oil (stops bleeding) directly to the bite. Wrap with a flexible bandage to hold the gauze in place. In blood soaks through the bandage, repeat the treatment.
Once the bleeding stops, clean the wound with disinfectant and warm water. Pat dry before applying antibiotic ointment and wrap with a flexible bandage.
Utilize the following essential oils to treat minor rat bites:
- Lemon oil
- Tea tree oil
- Helichrysum oil
- Lavender oil
- Myrrh oil
- Frankincense oil
- Carrot seed oil
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Signs That Warrant A Vet Visit
Rat bites on snakes should be monitored carefully for signs of infection. Snakes have immunity against various diseases. However, specific factors impact a snake’s natural ability to fight off diseases.
Environmental conditions, age, and pre-existing illnesses, such as a respiratory infection and inclusion body disease.
Signs of infection related to a rat bite includes redness, warm to touch, edematous (swelling), restlessness, and a thick yellowish/brown drainage. Any of these signs warrant a vet visit.
Rat Chews Of Snake’s Tail
All species of snakes have tails of varying lengths. While the venom is a snake’s most vital weapon against predatory animals and snakes, the tail is just as important.
A snake’s tail is similar to a human’s arm or an elephant’s trunk. The tail has the ability to grab ahold of different objects like tree branches. Unfortunately, a missing tail will put the snake in grave danger.
If a snake fails to eat a live rat, it could very well chew on its tail. Owners need to monitor any live animals inside their snakes’ cages. If the snake does not respond to a live rate within an hour, it should be removed.
At the end of the day, learning what to do if a rat chewed on my snake is pivotal. After all, you never can be sure what will happen when feeding live rodents to your snake. It only takes one wrong move for the snake to be bitten by the prey.
Once this happens, it is pertinent to clean the wound swiftly. Depending on the severity of the snake’s wounds, you may need to take your pet to a local vet. Don’t delay acting because doing so could make a big difference.