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Snake Rubbing his Nose Raw

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Snake Rubbing his Nose Raw

Postby Ash » Wed Jun 15, 2011 2:07 pm

So the Baron had many problems with him. One of which is a very common problem, especially in kingsnakes or other types of snakes that are not very content to sit around and be still. Kingsnakes are naturally more curious and active than other snakes. Often this leads to them bumping their noses continually against the glass or the roof of their tank. They will never stop pushing and trying to shove their face through the glass.

This causes rostral damage. Many times this may not become too severe. However, if left unchecked, the snake may start causing its nose to bleed, and over time may slowly deform his face--causing more complications. Obviously there are some extreme cases, but it is always good to stop a snake from nose bumping/rubbing against the glass.

Keep in mind I'm not talking about occasional nose bumping. I'm talking about a snake that just will do almost NOTHING else other than slam and press their face into the glass.

Unfortunately, the habit is impossible to stop. The only thing that can be done is to distract the snake. How do you distract a snake? The answer is: more enrichment.

I removed my snake and cleaned his cage out so that I could begin decorating from the beginning. I bought some more hides from the store. I also went outside and collected rocks, sticks, and some logs. !Make sure anything you plan to put into your reptile's cage that is not specifically made for reptiles is sterilized! I sterilized the branches I brought in from outside and then washed them.

I put all of the branches in so that the environment in his tank was very busy. I got him a nice big basking bowl and filled it up with water. Put in a lot of substrate--lots more than you usually do--even if your snake is not typically a burrower.

Also add maybe a cardboard ridge along the inside of the tank that is about four inches tall. This will help keep your snake from trying to push out of the glass. They'll see that there is something obstructing them there and not try to push against it.

Now add the snake back in. The Baron stopped nose-rubbing/bumping a LOT. His nose which was pink and even started to break and bleed in some places healed up pretty well. Why does this work?

Snakes that nose-bump are just special snakes that are more curious and need more stimulation than the average snake. They need more things to do and to go check out and explore. They are antsy because they are bored. Adding a lot of decor and branches makes the snake feel safer and more content to be inside his own cage. He has lots of things to slither through and to smell and look at.

Your snake will eventually get bored with the setup though and start nose-bumping again. For the Baron it took about two months before he went back to rubbing his face. Now I just have to clean his tank again and rearrange things--maybe add new branches. That should keep him happy for another two months.

Nose-bumping will never be cured, but the snake can certainly find better things to do. It's just the personality of the snake and it won't go away. Keep him interested in other things and distracted by what is IN his tank as opposed to what is OUTSIDE his tank.

Anyway, this worked for the Baron really well. If anybody else has other suggestions, comments, or concerns, feel free to add more. :D If anybody else has other ideas for enrichment, I would love to try them out and see how the Baron likes them.
3 red fox, 4 pectinata iguanas, nile monitor, BW tegu, sailfin dragon, leachie gecko, 6 snakes, 2 salamanders, 3 tarantulas
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Re: Snake Rubbing his Nose Raw

Postby BB » Fri Jun 17, 2011 7:46 pm

Great post.
What about adding a mate?
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Re: Snake Rubbing his Nose Raw

Postby Ash » Fri Jun 17, 2011 8:33 pm

Thanks!

Adding a mate would be a bad idea where the Baron is concerned. :shock: Kingsnakes are natural cannibals, and The Baron ate his cage mates before (that was with a past owner).

I suppose I'm not sure about most snakes and cannibalism. I'm pretty sure they are naturally prone to it--some species more than others. I know for sure kingsnakes will not hesitate to eat each other though. They hunt rattlesnakes in the wild.

If anybody else has any information on snakes and cannibalism that would be interesting to hear/read about. icon_biggin.gif
3 red fox, 4 pectinata iguanas, nile monitor, BW tegu, sailfin dragon, leachie gecko, 6 snakes, 2 salamanders, 3 tarantulas
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Re: Snake Rubbing his Nose Raw

Postby mobayrasta » Sun Jul 01, 2012 11:59 am

Great post! It is so HOT here today I am sure I will reply to some old post so bear with me...... LOL

Kingsnakes and Whipsnakes/Racers are notorious cannibals. In the wild kingsnakes actively hunt other snakes of any species. I once caught an Eastern Chain King that regurgitated about 20 baby Garter snakes. It was pretty gross.

I have kept many many snakes and bred new and old world ratsnakes for years. Luckily I never had a snake that rubbed his nose raw. I have seen many that do it over and over and it is pretty bad after a while. I am sure this post will help many people that stumble across it from a google search and such. Good work Ash!
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Re: Snake Rubbing his Nose Raw

Postby naja-naja » Mon Jul 02, 2012 6:08 pm

it helps to have an opaqu or solid cage or cover the glass with paper or a covering so they will see they can't get through it as they cannot comprehend a clear barrier.
1.4 burmese pythons
0.1 indian pythons
0.1 boa constrictors
1.1 macklott's pythons
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Re: Snake Rubbing his Nose Raw

Postby BethBLMT » Thu Jun 01, 2017 3:42 pm

Thank you! This really helped. I just went in & followed your advice for is enclosure! I look so forward to his healing!
We have 43 & Sir Ra Fa Eyre, our Sunfire retic is the only one who has this problem. He is an intelligent, extremely sweet, cuddly boy!
Don't tell any of the others, but he is my absolute favorite!

1.0 Purple Phase Albino Reticulated Python ~Apollo
1.0 White Phase Albino Reticulated Python ~Aponzo
1.0 Sunfire Albino Reticulated Python ~Ra Fa Eyre
1.0 Lavender Sunfire Reticulated Python ~Lieutenant La Fa Eyre
0.1 Suntiger Reticulated Python ~Georgia Peach
0.1 Phantom Reticulated Python ~Montana
1.0 Platinum Motley Tiger Reticulated Python ~Piscasso
1.0 Motley Reticulated Python ~Carmine
0.1 Southern/Merauke Scrub Python ~Amesthystina
1.0 Coastal Carpet Python ~Vinny
1.0 Caramel Coastal Carpet Python ~Carl
0.1 Australian Water Python ~Lily
1.0 Woma Python ~Wagarra Garra
1.0 Spied Ball Python ~The Captain
1.0 Dumeril Boa ~Drue
1.0 Dumeril Boa ~Rosey
0.1 Kenyan Sand Boa ~Puppy
1.0 Kenyan Sand Boa ~Pongo
0.1 Brazilian Rainbow Boa ~Raianne Beaumont
1.0 Junglow Boa Constrictor ~Virgiano
0.1 Pastel Boa Constrictor ~Petunia
1.0 Limburg Snow Rosy Boa ~Luscious Lamar
0.1 Suriname Redtail Boa Constrictor Brownsweg local ~ Azar
1.0 Suriname Redtail Boa Constrictor Brownsweg local ~ Azul
0.1 Moonglow/Ghost Cornsnake ~Kahleesi
1.0 Snow Cornsnake ~Jon Snow
0.1 Extreme Okeetee Cornsnake ~Zamora
0.1 High White Reverse Okeetee Cornsnake ~Amoraz
1.0 Lavender Cornsnake ~Paxton
0.1 Hypo Bull Snake ~Bellaluna
1.0 Marathon Gopher Snake ~Angus Phineas
1.0 Vietnamese Blue Beauty Snake ~Benevito
1.0 Taiwan Beauty Snake ~Tonto
0.1 Kunishiri Island Japanese Ratsnake ~Kuni
1.0 Black Milksnake ~Blake
1.0 Anytheristic Honduran Milksnake ~PB
0.1 Hypo Tangerine Honduran Milksnake ~OB
1.0 Sinaloan Milksnake ~Solomon
1.0 Apricot Puebloan Milksnake ~Ochino
0.1 Lavender Albino Florida Kingsnake ~Kahuna
0.1 Apalachicola Kingsnake ~Azuza
0.1 Albino California Kingsnake ~Avina
1.0 African House Snake ~Little Prince
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Re: Snake Rubbing his Nose Raw

Postby Ash » Thu Jun 01, 2017 3:55 pm

Oh, I'm glad it worked for you. :) I haven't visited this topic in a long time, so I'm happy that it helped someone.

You certainly have quite the collection of snakes! I love that they all have names. Lots of people don't name all their snakes when they have a lot.

The retics I worked with would often rub their noses raw. For male retics it is a mating urge, and they can really mess their faces up doing it. How old is this retic and your others?

Supposedly it is very common among males to rub. Hopefully this solution will help you, so let us know. :)
3 red fox, 4 pectinata iguanas, nile monitor, BW tegu, sailfin dragon, leachie gecko, 6 snakes, 2 salamanders, 3 tarantulas
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Re: Snake Rubbing his Nose Raw

Postby Juska » Fri Jun 02, 2017 7:49 am

Hey, could someone explain to me what the 1.0 and 0.1 means when referring to the snakes?
Pet parent of Emo the border collie mix, Conte the schnoodle and Namira the harlequin cat!
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Re: Snake Rubbing his Nose Raw

Postby Ash » Fri Jun 02, 2017 9:36 am

It's referring to the quantity of the sexes. So the number on the left side indicates the number of males, and the number on the right side indicates the number of females. :)

2.0 = 2 males
0.5 = 5 females

If someone is unsure of the gender of their animal, then they put 0.0.1 down.

It's mostly a reptile thing, but I have seen exotic mammal breeders use it too when referring to numbers of the genders. Although hopefully with a mammal a breeder wouldn't put down the 0.0.1, lol.
3 red fox, 4 pectinata iguanas, nile monitor, BW tegu, sailfin dragon, leachie gecko, 6 snakes, 2 salamanders, 3 tarantulas
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Re: Snake Rubbing his Nose Raw

Postby Juska » Fri Jun 02, 2017 10:28 am

Oh okay! I had no idea what it meant, haha. I was thinking, how can you have a tenth (0.1) of a snake? :lol: That is actually a very clever system, I like it.
Pet parent of Emo the border collie mix, Conte the schnoodle and Namira the harlequin cat!

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