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Snakes/My hognose snake has runny stool

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QUESTION: So, I have a very young Hognose male snake. He is about 6 weeks old at the most(not really sure because I caught him outside). Well I couldn't figure put why he was being so defensive all the sudden and has been in the same spot for a whole day which is abnormal. Well, I decided to take him out of the cage and he aaccidenlly fell out of my hand, which never happens, and he pooped when I did and it was really runny. When I picked him up I looked at him realizing his eyes were all glossed out, I believe he is getting ready to shed for the first time. I'm worried about the runny feces. Please help

ANSWER: If you dropped him that was not good, snakes are pretty hardy and I will admit to dropping a few sneaky and spazzy corn babies in my day, but it can cause internal issues. Some baby snakes will have loose stools, it will not be hard and formed like a adults would be, if it keeps on for more than 2 bowel movements then I would try and find someone to look at him, without knowing more about his past and with him being wild caught there is really no telling.

Also what are you feeding him? I have kept and raised quite a few wild caught hognose snakes and as long as he is eating good for you then great, if you cant get him to eat I would really put him back. As a herp club member I do not advise or support people catching wild animals (especially snakes and especially one that's rear fanged) but I know people are going to do it.

If he really is 6 weeks old then he would be tiny tiny, about 4-6 inches long and as big around as your pinky finger if not smaller. Hogs are known for being sassy snakes and will do whats called a bluff strike, where they strike with their mouth closed. I have hand tamed adults that will rear up and puff at you, they are just like that and a wild caught baby is no exception.

Make sure if you keep him that he is eating well, is on a good bedding that he can tunnel in (preferably very fine aspen shavings) and that his temps are kept up.

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QUESTION: He's 6 1/2 inches long . I'm feeding him toads ands frogs. He absolutely loves too eat and I feed him very well. He's never refused or had trouble eating. I felt terrible for dropping him. I almost wanted to cry. I've been spoiling him so much and spent so much to give him an incredible home. Since he is starting to shed I was wondering if maybe that was yhe cause to the lose stool? It's his first time to shed I believe. I just really hope it's not due to me dropping him, because I'd feel terrible. And he's never striked at me. He loves wheb I hold him and he just really likes me in general he was just all the sudden defensive. Sorry for all the questions and long responses.  Thank you so much!

Answer
Well snakes will tolerate being held, but they don't enjoy it like a dog would, and when they have had enough or don't want to be bothered they will let you know. If he is starting to shed this could be why he is so touchy and defensive, they get irritated when shedding and they also cant see very well. But again he is a hoggie so it may become a regular thing for him even when he is not in shed.

Just watch him and like I said if it continues, he regurges any meals or if you see a sharp lump poking out of him, I would take him to get looked at by someone, but try and refrain from saying its a wild caught snake if you take him to a vet.

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Amber Barrett

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I can answer any and all questions about snakes, whether its how to pick the right snake for your needs and wants, eating and temperature issues, health problems ( I can not give a diagnosis or make up for vetrinary treatment but can give options on what to do). I can also answer any questions on breeding snakes, what it entitles, what you can expect, I know quite a bit about any products for snakes and their husbandry.

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I currently keep over 150 snakes, I keep everything from ball pyhtons, to retics to green tree pythons. I have been around them my whole life due to a family interest in breeding them. I have researched, purchased, and delt with just about every snake, product and issue you can run into.

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Although I do not have a degree in herpatology, I have been around snakes my whole life and through books, research and life I know alot about them.

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