The biggest difference is that dead food doesn't bite back.
Thats obvious Omen duh!. What I was getting at was the fact that they are soooo concerned with the mice suffering, but dont have a problem with killing it by hand. As I said in one of the other replies. I can certainly understand feeding pre-killed when dealing with large prey. Rats are vicious and I wouldnt want my snake getting hurt. I was speaking specifically about feeding live pinkies or fuzzies, even small adult mice, to baby snakes to keep them feeding. Why starve a snake because your so damn set on getting it to eat something already dead. Your messing with the snakes instinct to smell food and hunt it down. Believe me at some point, I will probably try to switch my baby hog over to pre-killed. He has awesome markings and color and I wouldnt want him getting bit up and scarred..let alone injured or killed.
But I certainly wont starve him to do it. If he insists on live prey..well then live prey he will get.
But for now...he loves going after fuzzy mice. After he is done eating he keeps striking at movements. I think the live prey really get a feed response in baby snakes.