Smoking and Keeping Ball Pythons???

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Smoking and Keeping Ball Pythons???

Post  Chu'Wuti on Sun Mar 18, 2012 3:47 pm

Is there anybody out there who keeps ball pythons and who is also a smoker? My young friend whose BP I took care of for a year & a-half took her back over Christmas, but she won't eat for him. She ALWAYS ate for me.

We've gone back & forth many times with various ideas to get her to eat, and he decided maybe she was too stressed and moved her into a quieter room but still no success.

I am still trying to figure out why she quit eating for him. She ate one time within a couple of days after he got her back to his home in New Orleans but not at all since that day. So that leads to my question. I know his GF smokes, and I'm pretty sure he does as well. I'm speculating that the smoke bothers the BP. Anybody out there who smokes and who has no problem with this? Am I way off base? Or is this as likely a possibility as I'm thinking it is?

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Re: Smoking and Keeping Ball Pythons???

Post  Chu'Wuti on Sun Mar 18, 2012 7:42 pm

I have an answer to my question, but the answer means that we still do not know why this snake will eat for me but not for my friend. Maybe it's his apartment or maybe the way he offers food or ???

I guess we may never know. It seems I'll be getting her back later this week; hopefully she'll start eating again for me.


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Re: Smoking and Keeping Ball Pythons???

Post  tandy on Mon Mar 19, 2012 7:08 am

I wish I had an answer for you. I think the smoke could very well play a factor. I don't want to eat when the room or someone smells like smoke. As far as the other factors, there a ton of variables. It could be as simple as you are more comfortable at feeding time and posture differently and the snake recognizes it. Temps, light/dark, other activity, etc. If you really want to know, I would start a chart at each feeding and see if you can find common ground. I've found that some people are so excited to watch the snake eat that they hover over the enclosure and it makes the snake nervous.

If you want to go to extremes to know, both of you video your feedings/offerings at your place and his and see if there are any differences to note.

Good luck, Tandy
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Re: Smoking and Keeping Ball Pythons???

Post  Snakeman on Mon Mar 19, 2012 8:00 am

Sandy,

I've waited to respond because of my answer.

IMO Ball Pythons are really cool snakes and I don't want my answer to sound trite or

negative in any way; but IMO the snake is just being a Ball Python.

We were talking about BP's and their feeding habits on our herp hunt Saturday at

Blue River.

Michael noted that his BP will stop eating for awhile if he just moves the cage from

one room to another.

I commented how mine went for one year without eating and how sometimes just

bringing them home from a pet store where they were eating fine, will cause them to

stop eating.

It was also noted that sometimes they'll stop eating when the keeper has done

nothing at all and the only apparent change is the time of year.

I've heard about these eating problems from many, many keepers (experienced as

well as inexperienced) over the years and I've experienced it for myself.

IMO a keeper can go nuts trying to figure out a BP's "finicky" eating habits.

If you enjoy BP's and keep them you just have to be prepared for it.










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Re: Smoking and Keeping Ball Pythons???

Post  gatsu7 on Mon Mar 19, 2012 8:14 am

What Larry said.

As for the smoke, if changing cages or rooms can put them off food, as I have experienced, then I have no doubt that making them breathe carcinogens would do it as well, not to mention the other health problems it will cause to the snake, owner, and every other animal exposed to it.

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Re: Smoking and Keeping Ball Pythons???

Post  gatsu7 on Mon Mar 19, 2012 8:16 am

BTW, my girl started eating for me again yesterday. She stops from late September to mid March every year.

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Re: Smoking and Keeping Ball Pythons???

Post  tandy on Mon Mar 19, 2012 8:54 am

Ditto on that too. It could just be a ball python. Very Happy

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Re: Smoking and Keeping Ball Pythons???

Post  Chu'Wuti on Mon Mar 19, 2012 11:13 am

Yeah, I know that. My big normal male will not eat from about November until March; his first 2012 feeding was just this past week, and I had tried him three times previously, thinking that we were having such a warm/early spring it might get him to eat earlier. Nope, not until he is ready.

The first year we had him we freaked; now I just watch for him to go off feed in November and don't worry.

Tandy, you have some good suggestions and thoughts. It really could be that I do something differently, smell different, whatever . . . some factor that we haven't identified. The night that James came to visit her over Christmas she would not eat for him, then I tried and she still wouldn't eat, but after he left she ate right away for me. I assumed she wouldn't eat for him because there were too many people--they brought about 10 people over to see the snakes, and some were fairly noisy. I didn't try again to feed her until they'd all left and she'd had a chance to relax back into our normal quiet.

I wish we could try the video thing, but neither James nor I could afford the equipment. I will ask James about the environment in his apartment when he tries feeding her to see if we can identify any other issues.

Thanks for the suggestions, folks!


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Re: Smoking and Keeping Ball Pythons???

Post  Zak on Mon Mar 19, 2012 12:48 pm

I have a few ball pythons and I have some that refuse to eat one week and eat the next. When I get a new ball it wont eat for the next two to three weeks being in a new environment. That's why I feed them in their tubs. They seem to not like change at all so of course they wont eat. I can't comment on if smoking makes a diffor not. I'm a smoker but I don't smoke around my snakes.

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