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Old 01-13-20, 11:03 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Exclamation Snake has not fully shed in 6 months - Help!

Hi everyone,

I work at a nature center and we are having an issue with our Northern Pine Snake.

She is at least 10, she came to us fully mature 7 years ago. She had an infection last February and received 2 rounds of 10 antibiotic injections. Since receiving the injections she has not had a complete shed. We have given her baths with shed-ease and have not been able to get her to shed. Over the past few weeks her back half has gotten very dry and crinkly looking, while her front half looks normal with no blue in the eyes. She has gone to the vet several times over the past year, most recently in November with another visit scheduled later this week

Her enclosure is 90F on the warm side, 75F on the cool side with a hide on each side. Humidity is between 50 - 70, substrate is Zoomed Forest Floor Bedding (cypress mulch) which is changed bi-weekly.

Pictures attached, any help or advice would be appreciated.
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Old 01-14-20, 11:54 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Snake has not fully shed in 6 months - Help!

I'm not sure why the snake isn't shedding. They do tend to shed less often as they age because they're not growing as fast. How much and how often is she eating? I do think your warm side is a little too hot though. I keep my pits with a hot side of 84-86.
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Old 01-16-20, 08:52 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Snake has not fully shed in 6 months - Help!

This sounds like a similar case of what my milk snake had prior to dying. For him, he basically looked as if he had to shed but couldn't, and it got to the point where he looked dry and crunchy/crinkly. Eventually, after a long time of looking like that he did shed. However, almost immediately he went back to that same look, and never shed again and then died.

I took him to a couple of different vets, who tried a couple of different things. None of it worked and they really didn't know what it was.

I was talking to a friend of mine who is well connected in the reptile keeping community, and he asked a friend who has been breeding colubrids for decades. The response was something along the lines of "that's some sort of parasite that I've only had a handful of snakes get. They will get dry and look like they have to shed but never will. If they do manage to shed, they'll go right back into shed for even longer the next time." He said there was some medication or something to use. I'll have to reach out and see what it was. You can take it with a grain of salt if you'd like, but he knew exactly what I was talking about when describing the symptoms and that was more than the vets had to say on it. If I can get a hold of him and get the name of the medication, I'll let you know. This may not be the same thing as the Pine snake has, but it sort of sounds like it.
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