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anybody out there with a large snake?

i know my post "apparently we adopted a boa constrictor" is long, but if anyone out there has a large snake, i'd like to hear from them.  is it hard for you to have your pet?  is it hard for you to get past your feelings to feed them?

i never thought i'd have a pet that would grow up to be large enough to eat my other pets. (definitely not introducing harvey to the bunnies, kitties, or dragon!)

i used to have a 7 ft long, 20lb red tailed boa named Logan, who was female.  (I named her before I knew she was a girl)

Anyway, about feeding her, it bothered me to feed her live rats and mice, so I bought frozen ones.  That is right, frozen ones.  They are whole, just these dead frozen mice and rats.  Mice when she was small, rats when she got big.  Apparently they flash freeze them in a freezer of -100F or so so they die so fast they supposidly don't suffer.  There are other advantages as well, no lice, or fleas.  You just take them out of the freezer and thaw in warm water then dangle it in front of their nose, they strike it just like it was alive and constrict around it.  Snakes can get mites from eating live prey because the live prey have them.  I remember having to lock Logan in a bucket of semi-warm water and put a lid on it...snakes float...with pesticide to kill the mites.  Pain in the neck, so frozen mice and rats just work better.

You should be able to get these at any pet store that sells snakes.  Hope that helps.

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i used to have a 7 ft long, 20lb red tailed boa named Logan, who was female.  (I named her before I knew she was a girl)

Anyway, about feeding her, it bothered me to feed her live rats and mice, so I bought frozen ones.  That is right, frozen ones.  They are whole, just these dead frozen mice and rats.  Mice when she was small, rats when she got big.  Apparently they flash freeze them in a freezer of -100F or so so they die so fast they supposidly don't suffer.  There are other advantages as well, no lice, or fleas.  You just take them out of the freezer and thaw in warm water then dangle it in front of their nose, they strike it just like it was alive and constrict around it.  Snakes can get mites from eating live prey because the live prey have them.  I remember having to lock Logan in a bucket of semi-warm water and put a lid on it...snakes float...with pesticide to kill the mites.  Pain in the neck, so frozen mice and rats just work better.

You should be able to get these at any pet store that sells snakes.  Hope that helps.

yeah, we got him frozen mice although my mother in law refuses to believe us about the dangers of feeding live prey.  he already has a scar across his face from where one swiped at him in self defense. 

i wrote about that in the other post.

but thank you for all of your advice.

we don't really know if harvey is male, but we call him a male. 

what ever happened to logan?

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what ever happened to logan?

LOOK OUT BEHIND YOU!!!

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Does a trouser snake count?

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Does a trouser snake count?

I had mental bet with myself about who'd be the first to make that joke - you or CK. Looks like I win either way. Yay!

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My friend has a boa constrictor that has the run of her bedroom (no other pets to worry about). She woke up one night and it was stretched out straight on the bed beside her. She thought it was funny at the time but apparently this is how they measure their prey to see if it will fit inside their body. Yikes!

As for feeding the mice, I like the idea of flash frozen to reduce their suffering (my sister feeds her snake these, but her snake is a mexican king snake and not nearly as big as a boa). Sometimes the snakes don't eat them though.

I also do not know how these feeder mice are raised. I have been wondering if it would be kinder to breed and raise the feeder mice at home, and then feed them live. At least this way I could make sure that the mice were healthy and happy while they lived. The mice will probably suffer more at their time of death than they would if they were flash frozen, but snakes do kill their prey quickly with their bodies before eating.

I guess it would depend on how the feeder mice are normally bred and raised. If it's humane then feeding frozen is probably better for the mice, but if the conditions are no good, it would probably be best to only buy a couple and then breed and raise them in a nicer environment.

I don't know though, it's just something I have been thinking about.

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I've been thinking about this a lot, too. My house now has tons of pets, but someday, when I get my own place, ima 'dopt SOMEbody. I'd consider large snakes because of how hard it is for them to get adopted.

On the veggieboards forum, one person said she hand-raised some feeder mice and fed them veggies and treats for a little while until she "needed" them for her snake. Then she thwacked them onto the floor. It sounds awful, but the impact is so sudden there's no pain. I applaud her efforts. I could NEVER do that.

Here's one company that says their frozen rodents are humanely raised. I hope it's true. http://www.themousefactory.com/ Perhaps they use the freezing method mentioned? I really like that idea, I hope it's as painless as it sounds. But itakes me so sad... The amount of mice or rats needing to be frozen is nothing compared to the amount of animals put to slaughter for the pet food industry. Perhaps because there is somewhat less demand, there is more money to raise the animals properly.

I disagree with pet stores in general, and the selling of many reptiles- particularly those that look "cool" but act like they really didn't want to be put in a cage for the rest of their life. But lizards in shelters have no where else to go. Gotta eat something.

I love rats to itty bitty pieces, so seeing the photos from the store about made me cry. :'( I happen to enjoy snakes very much, too. 

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Does a trouser snake count?

I had mental bet with myself about who'd be the first to make that joke - you or CK. Looks like I win either way. Yay!

I thought about it the other day, then decided against it.
::)

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My friend has a boa constrictor that has the run of her bedroom (no other pets to worry about). She woke up one night and it was stretched out straight on the bed beside her. She thought it was funny at the time but apparently this is how they measure their prey to see if it will fit inside their body. Yikes!

As for feeding the mice, I like the idea of flash frozen to reduce their suffering (my sister feeds her snake these, but her snake is a mexican king snake and not nearly as big as a boa). Sometimes the snakes don't eat them though.

I also do not know how these feeder mice are raised. I have been wondering if it would be kinder to breed and raise the feeder mice at home, and then feed them live. At least this way I could make sure that the mice were healthy and happy while they lived. The mice will probably suffer more at their time of death than they would if they were flash frozen, but snakes do kill their prey quickly with their bodies before eating.

I guess it would depend on how the feeder mice are normally bred and raised. If it's humane then feeding frozen is probably better for the mice, but if the conditions are no good, it would probably be best to only buy a couple and then breed and raise them in a nicer environment.

I don't know though, it's just something I have been thinking about.

feeding live mice to your snake is an awful experience for the mice, yes, but it's also dangerous for the snake.  mice are kinda inclined to try to fight for their lives and they'll bite and claw the snake.  snakes cannot really feel that sort of thing very well so the mouse/rat/guinea pig/rabbit could literally chew a big chunk in them and they might not notice.  snakes that are fed live food get bad infections and can even die.

harvey already has a scar across his face from where one took a swipe at him.

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I've been thinking about this a lot, too. My house now has tons of pets, but someday, when I get my own place, ima 'dopt SOMEbody. I'd consider large snakes because of how hard it is for them to get adopted.

On the veggieboards forum, one person said she hand-raised some feeder mice and fed them veggies and treats for a little while until she "needed" them for her snake. Then she thwacked them onto the floor. It sounds awful, but the impact is so sudden there's no pain. I applaud her efforts. I could NEVER do that.

Here's one company that says their frozen rodents are humanely raised. I hope it's true. http://www.themousefactory.com/ Perhaps they use the freezing method mentioned? I really like that idea, I hope it's as painless as it sounds. But itakes me so sad... The amount of mice or rats needing to be frozen is nothing compared to the amount of animals put to slaughter for the pet food industry. Perhaps because there is somewhat less demand, there is more money to raise the animals properly.

I disagree with pet stores in general, and the selling of many reptiles- particularly those that look "cool" but act like they really didn't want to be put in a cage for the rest of their life. But lizards in shelters have no where else to go. Gotta eat something.

I love rats to itty bitty pieces, so seeing the photos from the store about made me cry. :'( I happen to enjoy snakes very much, too. 

me too.  i love all animals and i was actually looking for a pet mouse or rat when i ended up adopting my bunnies instead.

they have longer lifespans and i cannot handle losing a pet every year or two.    :'(

and i could NEVER raise my little mouse babies and then kill them and feed them to a snake.  i could never feed them live to a snake.  i could never kill anyone. 

i just wish i could give harvey vegetarian soy based mice.

like bocca mice.

;)

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He can has cheezburger because cheeze is vegan.  ;D

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A little note to people.  If you have baby mice, rats, hamsters or bunnies and give them to a pet store to sell, they can well end up as snake food. 

I was in a pet store the day a guy bought a big black bunny.  As he was leaving, he said his snake was really hungry.  So don't assume that if you give babies to a store they are being sold as pets.  They are just being sold.

I have enjoyed this thread.  When it comes to feeding cats and dogs, animals, it is a controversial issue.  When it comes to snakes it is not. 

I switched my dog to a raw diet last week and she is doing amazingly well on it.

Good luck with your snake.  They are so cool.  Personally, I could not feed live food.  Probably why I don't have a snake.

I also know someone who breeds mice and kills them humanely, if killing is humane to feed his snakes.  He treats his mice like gold while they are alive. 

Everything has to eat.  Hope you can find a solution.

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This is going to be completely unhelpful, but...

I had a dream (about a year ago, I think) that I rescued/adopted a large snake that ate only cats.  In the dream I sculpted tofu into the shape of a cat and the snake loved it.  ::)

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That is why I  :)>>> you, mdv.

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This is going to be completely unhelpful, but...

I had a dream (about a year ago, I think) that I rescued/adopted a large snake that ate only cats.  In the dream I sculpted tofu into the shape of a cat and the snake loved it.  ::)

*giggles*

that's cute.

:)>>>

i'm not sure if i can convince harvey, no matter how intricately i sculpt it into a mouse!

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He can has cheezburger because cheeze is vegan.  ;D

haha.

i sorta have a rule with feeding my animals.  i only feed them what i think they would realistically eat and be able to take down.  that's why my cats don't get beef, venison, pork, or any other animal that i think my little house cat couldn't hunt themselves.  fish is actually totally unnatural for cats, which surprises most people.  think about it, when is a cat going to willingly jump into a lake and catch them?  it's a very common allergy in cats.  i mostly just feed my cats birds (duck, chicken, turkey).  they OCCASIONALLY get a fish flavor, but not much.

natural balance pet food (not the same as the butter!) is the brand i feed my cats and my mother in law's dog.  they don't test on animals and they treat their animals pretty well.  they have a reptile food line that you can feed your snake instead of mice (and it's sized like a mouse... pinky, fuzzy, hopper, mouse, rat).  but it's made from beef so i don't know about that.  i just don't think harvey could take down a cow.  he might try, but he would FAIL.

http://www.naturalbalance.net/

has nothing to do with what you were saying, but saying "cheezeburger" reminded me of the natural balance snake food made from beef.

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A little note to people.  If you have baby mice, rats, hamsters or bunnies and give them to a pet store to sell, they can well end up as snake food. 

I was in a pet store the day a guy bought a big black bunny.  As he was leaving, he said his snake was really hungry.  So don't assume that if you give babies to a store they are being sold as pets.  They are just being sold.

so true.  that's why i told brittney that if i ever die, she's taking over our zoo and she has no option of backing out.  i don't want my babies to be snake food!  it makes me glad to have adopted shane.  she's a big bunny and that story reminds me of her. 
:-\

I have enjoyed this thread.  When it comes to feeding cats and dogs, animals, it is a controversial issue.  When it comes to snakes it is not. 

I switched my dog to a raw diet last week and she is doing amazingly well on it.

my kitties get raw advantage sometimes.  they like it.  it's way more natural for them than cooked foods, even though i have yet to find a vet who agrees with feeding them raw food.

Good luck with your snake.  They are so cool.  Personally, I could not feed live food.  Probably why I don't have a snake.

yeah, same here.  i wasn't going to get a large snake because of that reason, although they make better pets since they are more sociable and they like being handled more since they are big enough to see you as a whole being instead of just hands, arms, and fingers.  i love snakes, but i don't love the idea of their diet.  i had a small  albino garter snake when i was little and he ate bugs.  i felt better about that than small mammals although i don't necessarily see an insect life as less valuable than a mammal life.  but i feel like they might experience less pain and a quicker death since they are so small.  i could be wrong.  also, when rainbow's crickets escape i let them since i figure they've got the right to live.  rainbow is the bearded dragon.

I also know someone who breeds mice and kills them humanely, if killing is humane to feed his snakes.  He treats his mice like gold while they are alive. 

that might be the better option BUT i could never do that.  i could never kill anything.  i cannot even kill bugs.  and when my kitties had ear mites i  felt bad for killing the ear mites but i had to do it for my kitties' health.  i feel bad for buying the already killed food since i'm basically paying to have the job done for me.  but i don't understand how people can care for an animal and raise it from a baby and gain a sense of trust from it because it looks to you for safety and life and then betray it in the ultimate way by killing it.  i couldn't do it.

Everything has to eat.  Hope you can find a solution.

exactly. 

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