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post #31 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-02-2008, 01:34 PM
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Among most PT people, I think you're preaching to the choir, but when trying to educate people about not feeding live rodents, I tend to steer clear from the humane argument. Most reptile owners simply do not recognize mice and rats as more than food for their pet. The best argument one can make, is that it is safer for their snake - I've seen far too many snakes completely ripped apart by their food. No matter how someone wants to skew their argument, throwing two animals into an aquarium to fight to the death is not "natural". No more than cock fighting or dog fighting is natural.

While freezing is quite effective at killing parasites, such as mites, round worm, pin worm, etal. It does not generally kill off bacteria or viruses, but that is not a real concern, because most bacteria and viruses that would be detrimental to a rodent are not going to affect a snake. Especially once they pass through the digestive tract.

I don't want to bog down in the wild caught debate, beyond saying that if it weren't for wild caught animals, most animals we have in captivity today would not be available as pets at all. Dogs may have just started hanging around our campfires, scavenging for scraps when we were cave men, but I seriously doubt chinchillas, gerbils or parrots were. Do I believe people should be out pillaging the local wildlife? Certainly not, but there has to be some level where certain species can be made available to those people who want to captive breed them, while not being detrimental to whole wild populations.

One thing I would like to mention about wild caught animals not feeding on thawed rodents, is that it is not because the rodent is already dead. I've seen many snakes eating road kill, or dead fish on the shore of a stream, heck, I've even come across a big rattlesnake trying to pry a long dead, completely dried up, and very flat frog off a highway once. They refuse it because they simply don't recognize a lab-bred white mouse as a food source. They have spent X number of years being opportunistic predators, eating what is available in their natural habitat. Not to mention, many snakes don't eat just rodents. They will eat frogs, lizards, birds, many species will even eat other snakes. They simply aren't seeing this new thing that they've never ever seen before, as food. If you were living in an isolated tribe in the Amazon jungle, and I suddenly handed you a Snickers bar, would you immediately think it was food? Anyway, in my experience, which I'd like to say is not insignificant, very few snakes will refuse to switch to thawed food sources. Sometimes it can take a serious level of persistence and patience, but that is all part of the ongoing education involved in being a non-traditional pet keeper.

On a slightly different note, I want to fly off the handle every time I hear someone say something to the effect of "ball pythons are always fussy eaters". They are not, that is a complete and utter myth. Yes, they can stress easily, which has a tendency to put them off feed... but I have dealt with literally dozens of ball pythons, from all manner of situations - including wild caught, farm bred, and captive bred, some with injuries, some stressed from poor care. I have never come across one that wouldn't switch to thawed rodents eventually, most quite easily. Again, it comes down to patience and persistence, and educating yourself in how your animal behaves. The key to getting a ball python to feed is reducing it's stress level as much as possible, which unfortunately many new owners tend to exacerbate in the excitement of having a new pet... but anyway, I diverge from the main topic.

I used to breed my own feeder rodents, but I no longer do, because I would prefer to dedicate that maintenance time to other animals - of which I keep snakes of all shapes and sizes, but at the same time I also keep and have kept many species of rodents, from your usual rats, mice, gerbils, hamsters, guinea pigs, to some more exotic stuff like flying squirrels, dormice, lemmings, and agoutis. I also keep and have kept other animals which sometimes eat rodents, including genets, cusimanse, large frogs and toads, and tarantulas. I buy frozen in bulk, and only feed something live as a last resort. It is safer for my animals, and in the long run, cheaper and easier for me as the keeper until someone invents Purina Snake Chow.

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post #32 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-02-2008, 01:44 PM
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Originally Posted by shinystar View Post
However I have to say that I find it distasteful when people feed rabbits to snakes and then put it on Youtube etc, that is cruel because they are deriving pleasure from the rabbit being eaten and not just doing it to feed the snake. I also saw a quite small chameleon eat a big mouse and I thought it was going to choke to death, it barely fitted in its mouth. As to the debate itself, I can see both sides.
This is one of the things I can't stand. Sensationalizing it. No one posts a pictures of their dog scarfing kibble. Why? Because it just doesn't get a rise out of people. I find it deplorable that people post pictures of their snakes feeding. It just reinforces the divide between rodent lover and snake lover and simply comes across as taunting those people who find it disturbing.

Also, reptiles do not have the gag reflex, like mammals do, and don't "choke" like we would. So they can often swallow things that we would consider much too large... though... for a chameleon, that's generally not the best of ideas. Trying to keep prey size to be easily swallowed is much better.

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post #33 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-02-2008, 02:41 PM
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That's an excellent idea! Purina snake chow would really make my life much easier! By the way do you own the kinkajou in your avatar?
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post #34 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-02-2008, 03:00 PM
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That's an excellent idea! Purina snake chow would really make my life much easier! By the way do you own the kinkajou in your avatar?
T-Rex company used to make a product called Snake Steak Sausages, which were basically sausage links (made of various vitamin enriched poultry byproducts) in various small sizes for snakes up to about the size of an adult corn snake, but I haven't seen the product available for a couple of years now - I believe it was discontinued. My guess would be because of the simple lack of scientifically based nutritional information involved in something "pre-packaged" versus whole prey items. Though the concept could work, it would take a lot of research on the part of the company to ensure it was an adequately balanced diet. Remember, we have a over a hundred of years into developing commercial dog and cat diets. Exotics have a lot of catching up to do in this department. In the end, it still doesn't solve the problems involved with feeding larger snakes. I just don't see any company producing a sausage link big enough to feed a 10+ foot Burmese python.

Yeah, that's my problem child kinkajou, Gizmo.

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post #35 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-02-2008, 04:35 PM
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thank you ravnos, you literally said that which i couldn't find the words for

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post #36 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-02-2008, 06:42 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Ravnos View Post
Among most PT people, I think you're preaching to the choir, but when trying to educate people about not feeding live rodents, I tend to steer clear from the humane argument. Most reptile owners simply do not recognize mice and rats as more than food for their pet. The best argument one can make, is that it is safer for their snake - I've seen far too many snakes completely ripped apart by their food. No matter how someone wants to skew their argument, throwing two animals into an aquarium to fight to the death is not "natural". No more than cock fighting or dog fighting is natural.

While freezing is quite effective at killing parasites, such as mites, round worm, pin worm, etal. It does not generally kill off bacteria or viruses, but that is not a real concern, because most bacteria and viruses that would be detrimental to a rodent are not going to affect a snake. Especially once they pass through the digestive tract.

I don't want to bog down in the wild caught debate, beyond saying that if it weren't for wild caught animals, most animals we have in captivity today would not be available as pets at all. Dogs may have just started hanging around our campfires, scavenging for scraps when we were cave men, but I seriously doubt chinchillas, gerbils or parrots were. Do I believe people should be out pillaging the local wildlife? Certainly not, but there has to be some level where certain species can be made available to those people who want to captive breed them, while not being detrimental to whole wild populations.

One thing I would like to mention about wild caught animals not feeding on thawed rodents, is that it is not because the rodent is already dead. I've seen many snakes eating road kill, or dead fish on the shore of a stream, heck, I've even come across a big rattlesnake trying to pry a long dead, completely dried up, and very flat frog off a highway once. They refuse it because they simply don't recognize a lab-bred white mouse as a food source. They have spent X number of years being opportunistic predators, eating what is available in their natural habitat. Not to mention, many snakes don't eat just rodents. They will eat frogs, lizards, birds, many species will even eat other snakes. They simply aren't seeing this new thing that they've never ever seen before, as food. If you were living in an isolated tribe in the Amazon jungle, and I suddenly handed you a Snickers bar, would you immediately think it was food? Anyway, in my experience, which I'd like to say is not insignificant, very few snakes will refuse to switch to thawed food sources. Sometimes it can take a serious level of persistence and patience, but that is all part of the ongoing education involved in being a non-traditional pet keeper.

On a slightly different note, I want to fly off the handle every time I hear someone say something to the effect of "ball pythons are always fussy eaters". They are not, that is a complete and utter myth. Yes, they can stress easily, which has a tendency to put them off feed... but I have dealt with literally dozens of ball pythons, from all manner of situations - including wild caught, farm bred, and captive bred, some with injuries, some stressed from poor care. I have never come across one that wouldn't switch to thawed rodents eventually, most quite easily. Again, it comes down to patience and persistence, and educating yourself in how your animal behaves. The key to getting a ball python to feed is reducing it's stress level as much as possible, which unfortunately many new owners tend to exacerbate in the excitement of having a new pet... but anyway, I diverge from the main topic.

I used to breed my own feeder rodents, but I no longer do, because I would prefer to dedicate that maintenance time to other animals - of which I keep snakes of all shapes and sizes, but at the same time I also keep and have kept many species of rodents, from your usual rats, mice, gerbils, hamsters, guinea pigs, to some more exotic stuff like flying squirrels, dormice, lemmings, and agoutis. I also keep and have kept other animals which sometimes eat rodents, including genets, cusimanse, large frogs and toads, and tarantulas. I buy frozen in bulk, and only feed something live as a last resort. It is safer for my animals, and in the long run, cheaper and easier for me as the keeper until someone invents Purina Snake Chow.
STRONG IN THIS ONE THE FORCE IS
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post #37 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-03-2008, 12:12 PM
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Quote:
you say the rats/mice are backed into a corner and scared for their lives i dont belive that unless the rodent is wild caught.
For most cases when feeding live to my wild caught snakes the mouse is so curious about his new surroundings and usually walk strait up to the snakes that are usually in their hides or under the bedding the little guys usually dont even know what hit them.
I just want to add that in most captive bred snakes you should alway feed frozen prey because the snake just does not have the hunting experience or instict that a wild snake would and is much more of a chance of being injured or killed by its food believe me ive seen it not pretty. I do have captive raised snakes and i would never feed live to them but ive had wild snakes for years and tried many different things to switch but the only ones that do are usually less that 1 year old.
Basically the mice/rats havnt got a choice to escape in the wild they have a choice to defend themselves or run away when you put bait into the tank they have no where to run except hide ..
and loads of people has had bad experiences where there beloved pet gets injured real bad maybe even hurt and in my mind its there OWN doing .. yeah snakes need to feed but when you choose to feed them live food you put it at risk ..
all very good points but i just needed to get it off my chest ,

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post #38 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-03-2008, 01:25 PM
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Basically the mice/rats havnt got a choice to escape in the wild they have a choice to defend themselves or run away when you put bait into the tank they have no where to run except hide ..
and loads of people has had bad experiences where there beloved pet gets injured real bad maybe even hurt and in my mind its there OWN doing .. yeah snakes need to feed but when you choose to feed them live food you put it at risk ..
all very good points but i just needed to get it off my chest ,
Well, in the UK you have a whole different reason for not live feeding. It is illegal.

This has always been my thought: When we agree to take on the care of a pet, that care includes protecting it from all forms of potential harm, to the best of our ability. Even if the risk is minute, and the snake usually wins the battle to the death... why take the risk? What purpose does it serve?

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post #39 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-03-2008, 01:31 PM
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IS IT ILLEGAL ???
Oh my god ..
i know loads of people who live feed over here
and i know loads of petshops who sells feeders ??
im confused LOL

but i feel the exact same way as you do
its all about the animals welfare BIG OR SMALL

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post #40 of 40 (permalink) Old 04-03-2008, 01:38 PM
 
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I think it should be illegal everywhere. Live feeding disugits me!
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