The Cost of Owning a Pet Snake

March 12, 2013 by  
Filed under All Posts, Reptiles

The Cost of Owning a Pet Snake

Little boys love to show them to everyone. Many people shriek when they see them. But, there are those who find pet snakes cool and love to keep them in their home. If you are potentially one of those people, here are some estimates on what it will cost to keep your newfound buddy.

Snakes get a bad rap. They can make good pets for those who like animals that they can watch most of the time. But, in order to watch them, you’ll need a few things.

Preparing for Your Pet Snake

The first thing you will acquire is a snake. There are snake species that are better as pets than others. Consider the Ball Python or the Snow Corn Snake. But, remember that, first and foremost, snakes are considered wild animals. They are exotic pets. When uncomfortable they can revert back to their instincts. Always be prepared for this.

The cost of a pet snake will depend on their attributes. Of course, it is illegal to own a venomous snake without a license and credentials which say you can handle dangerous animals. They also require very specific housing so that they don’t get loose and harm others.

Here, we will be talking about non-venomous snakes which are the normal pet choice. Your new pet snake can cost a few hundred dollars or a few thousand.

Where will your snake live? Most are housed in glass aquariums like you find them in captivity in the zoo. Choose an aquarium that is large enough for your snake to move around and stretch out. If you buy a baby, remember that they will grow. A good tank might cost around $100 or more.

Snakes like to bask in heat and under or on rocks. Depending on the type you buy, you might even need a water feature in the tank. Figure in money for a tank heater and a heat lamp. You can find all of these things at a pet store that sells snakes.

Don’t forget that you will need water bowls, foliage and a substrate substance for the bottom of the cage. In all, you may spend $200 or more for your cage accessories to start.

Pet Snakes have to eat. The price of buying food depends on the manner in which it is purchased. You can catch your own mice or buy them fresh. Frozen food might cost you less than choosing the live variety. But keep in mind many snakes will not eat frozen food. In that case you would have to provide fresh food.

Even snakes can get sick so you’ll want to schedule a visit to the vet. The first visit will probably cost you the most and you won’t need to return except for regular checkups or if they fall ill. That bill could be hefty depending on what tests the vet needs to perform.

All in all, you could spend a hefty sum on your pet snake. It all begins with the type of snake you choose in the beginning. You can have a great pet snake and stick within your financial means.

Feeding your Pet Snake

December 20, 2012 by  
Filed under All Posts, Reptiles

Feeding your Pet Snake

They are thought of as creepy and sneaky but many keep them as pets and are happy with them. We are talking about snakes. If you have bought a pet snake companion, one thing that is important to know is how and when to feed them.

They have been demonized in history and religion. Snakes are perceived as dangerous and lethal but all are not that way. Some can be kept as pets. Now, they are not the most active or cuddly of pets, but for your lifestyle, that might be what you are looking for. If so, then good. There are snakes available that make excellent pets for someone like you.

Once you have your pet snake housed, there is the matter of feeding. Before we get into that, here are a few things that are helpful to know about snakes.

1. Snakes are carnivorous – They are what are called “obligate carnivores.” In the wild, they eat whatever is present, usually small animals, other reptiles and even birds if they come into their territory. Most of their nutrition comes from meat sources.

2. Snakes don’t adapt to temperature changes well – Just like you would probably feel bad going from extreme cold to extreme heat, so do snakes. It may even affect their appetite if they are uncomfortable temperature wise when it is time to eat. A warm environment is more conducive to their appetite.

3. Pet Snakes eat about once a week – If you have ever seen a snake eat anything then you know how slow their digestive system works. You may even see the bulge of their food in their gut for a long time before it disappears. Many snake owners choose a specific day each week to feed their snake so that they are on a regular schedule.

4. Snakes have jaws that unhinge
– It is a phenomenon to behold. They can eat food that is several times larger than their mouths. Their jaws will unhinge so that the food can pass.

Now that you know a little bit more about your pet snake, it is time to get down to the feeding. What do they eat and where can you get it?

Feeding Hints

First, we mentioned that snakes are carnivorous. You will have to feed them meat. If they do need any carbohydrates, it is obtained from the plant matter still present in the digestive tract of their food.

Speaking of food, you can feed your pet snake live, frozen or recently killed prey. Snakes are animals that like to hunt. They will go after food that is appealing to them and snap it up.

Live prey will require you to buy and keep animals like small rodents for that purpose. You can purchase them just in time for feeding but if your snake doesn’t eat it right away you will have to house and feed it.

Frozen prey lets you store more than you need and only thaw what you want. Don’t thaw it in the microwave but let it come to room temperature a couple hours before feeding time.

If you are not squeamish you can kill prey so you don’t have to worry about caring for it if it is not eaten. You can freeze it yourself. Keep in mind however, that many pet snakes do not like to eat prey that is already dead. If you have such a snake then it will be mandatory that you provide them with live prey.

Pet snakes have specific diets. To keep them healthy, use this guide on how to feed and what to use for food.

Pet Snakes! Choosing a Snake and Snake Care

December 18, 2012 by  
Filed under All Posts, Reptiles

Pet SnakesPet Snakes
“What kind of pet is clean, odorless, and quiet?… easy to hold, and easy to care for? A pet snake! Use this great guide for choosing a pet snake and caring for it too!!”

Pet Snakes are well suited to certain types of people!

Many types of snakes live around the world, about 2,900 species to be exact! They range in size from very small (only 4 inches!) to very large (over 30 feet!). Several of these species are kept as pets, giving snake keepers a large variety to choose from.

The best beginner pet snakes are the ones which are docile, gentle, easy to care for and easy to hold. Some examples of these are the ball python, corn snakes, and king snakes. The pros to having pet snakes are that they are quite clean and usually odorless, and don’t make much noise. They don’t need to be fed too often either (unless you own a very large python or boa). Their maintenance is often inexpensive.

Snakes are agile with slender body shapes to help them move stealthily. You do need to be careful in choosing your first pet snake however, because their temperaments and eventual size can vary quite a bit. But they do differ in size and temperament. Most snakes kept in captivity rarely get over 5 feet however. Once they start getting over that they need more specialized environments and care. If you want a large python or boa you have to be prepared to care for a large snake. Different snakes also have different life spans. King snakes and rat snakes can live around 15 years in captivity while boas and pythons can live 20 to 30 years. This is definitely something you will want to take into consideration! Read More

More on Pet Snakes!