Author: Allen Brown
Snakes are fascinating creatures, and owning one is an enjoyable task for those with curious minds. Most pets bring companionship and love, but others are kept purely for the interest factor in a particular species. Snakes are an excellent example of this as they are an extremely interesting animal to have as a pet. They can provide stress relief from the routine of feeding them (more on that later) to the satisfaction involved in owning such a fascinating creature. Nevertheless, they require specific techniques to keep them safe and happy, which this post will detail.
Choose A Snake Species
This will be the first step in your snake-owning journey and perhaps the most important one you will make. The choice of snake variety is a complex process, and it will have a long-term impact on how you proceed. Remember that you should choose carefully because this is a living creature and deserves respect and dignity.
Once you have it, it is your full responsibility, and you cannot dispose of it due to mere inconvenience. If you are struggling at this initial stage, you can use online sources to guide you. You can head over to the snake experts at My Snake Pet, who explain in detail what you need to know about each species as well as how to best care for them. However, there are numerous websites that you can use to research which option is best for your requirements.
- Your available space: Snakes tend to grow quite large, and while some grow to enormous lengths, even the smallest ones will need enough room to move around. You should ensure that you have enough space to house their terrarium so that they won’t be constantly disturbed by general movement.
- Your existing knowledge: How much do you know about snakes? If the answer is zero, then you should opt for something a little less extreme than a Burmese python or an extremely venomous one. Get some experience with smaller ones before moving onto the larger and scarier ones.
- What you will do when you go on vacation: Snakes are not like cats or dogs; they require particular care. You will need to know who can look after your pet snake whenever you are away for long periods.
- How squeamish you are: These are wild animals that eat mice and rodents. You might want to reconsider getting a snake if you are squeamish about handling dead animals.
Set Up Their Habitat
Once you have settled on a snake species, you can move on to set up their habitat. This will be dependent on which snake you get because each will have slightly different requirements. Nevertheless, they will all go inside what is known as a terrarium. This is essentially a large fish tank without any water. However, you will need to set it up to create an environment so that your snake is comfortable.
As a general rule, only one snake should be kept per terrarium since snakes do not naturally bond with each other. You can place them in areas where they can hideaway, which is large enough to encompass its entire body but small enough to create a snug fit. The bottom of the terrarium should also be lined with absorbent material. This absorbs any waste the snake produces and maintains a comfortable environment. You can usually find this substrate in pet stores. If you want to do it yourself, you can also use shredded newspapers, but ensure you change it regularly.
Understand Their Feeding Habits
Snakes are utterly unlike any pet you might have had before (unless you have previously owned reptiles, amphibians, or arachnids) and will require special feeding techniques. They will eat rodents, and while live rodents are preferable, it isn’t usually possible for most people. Therefore, you can purchase already deceased mice. Once you receive these from the pet store, you should place them in a freezer to keep them from going bad. When the time comes to feed them, you should allow the mice to come to room temperature before placing them inside their habitat.
- Young snakes need to be fed at least twice per week.
- You can feed mature snakes once every three weeks.
This depends on the snake species, so if you are unsure, make sure to ask this when you buy it.
Owning a snake is more gratifying than many people think. They are fascinating animals, and you can spend a lot of time merely studying them in their environment. However, you must ensure you get a snake that you can handle, set up its living environment accordingly and get ready to stock your freezer up with dead mice!