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Old 05-14-03, 11:01 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Unhappy Need Help (TBD)

I've had Montey (my Children's Python) for about three years this summer.

For a while now she's be exhibitting what I thought could be normal behanviour. But while I was reading some of my breeding books it talked about TBD.

Some of the common symptoms are star gazing (losing the ability to focus and remains in an upward-staring motion) and she's having head tremors. Another symptom is if you turn the snake over, they have trouble righting themselves, however, she's always cranky in the spring time and it's not a good idea to be handling her right now so I can't test that one yet.

I called our local Animal Hospital and they referred me to the Toronto Animal hospital which is about 6 hours away from here. I have absolutely no problems taking her to that hospital if needs be.

I know that this disease is fatal, and that there is no treatment or cure. What I don't know is if it's painful. If my baby is just sick, I can nurse her and make her time on this planet worthwhile and happy. But if she's in pain, I don't want to prolong that, however heartbreaking it is to lose my most cherished family member.

Any advice on what my next actions should be? I'm very concerned. I'm calling the Toronto Animal Hospital tomorrow...

Thanks you in advance to anyone who may reply,
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Old 05-14-03, 11:08 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I can't say anything about the snake or what it might have but I would go to a reptile specialized vet...not just any animal hospital. I am not sure if they have anyone who specializes in reptiles at the Toronto Animal Hospital, but a wrong diagnoses can be just as fatal for a snake as doing nothing at all.....

A page with reptile vets....I haven't tried them all or even half of them but someone on here can recommend one as well:
http://www.icomm.ca/dragon/canrepvt.htm#ont

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Old 05-15-03, 01:02 AM   #3 (permalink)
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TBD I have never heard of, but what you are describing is IBD (Inclusion Body Disease). First sign is usually regurgitation. When you are able to get her out and flip her over onto her back, note whether or not she knows which way is up. The vet won't be able to help you if it is in fact IBD. There are no tests for it. The only way to find out is after the snake is deceased and a necropsy is performed. Many snakes will sit and stare upward at nothing without having the disease. When she is staring off into space, does she react when you wave your hand in front of her face (eyes focus/move, tongue flicker)? She may be reaching breeding age and is acting a bit odd because of it.....
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Old 05-15-03, 09:16 AM   #4 (permalink)
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RE; LdyDrgn

Yes! She does, she'll flicker her tongue, she'll move, when it's my dad she snaps. This is normal behaviour? If it is, that's wonderful.

But what about the head shaking. It's like when she's slithering she's abit stiff and her head is shaking.

So if she has this disease, and there's no way to treat it, I pretty much have to wait it out?
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Old 05-15-03, 11:17 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Oops...I just looked at the book again, I typoed...it IS IBD

My mistake
Jenn
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Old 05-15-03, 11:25 AM   #6 (permalink)
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After having the animal for 3 years, unless you have introduced a new animal or handled a sick animal then yours without washing your hands, it is doubtful that the animal has IBD. Pythons seem to be the quickest animal to show symtoms and die from this one. I have heard that some animals survive and become carriers (I think more common among boas). I think there is a live animal test not available but from what I remember the accuracy was low. I think some types of parasites can cause nerve problems in reptiles but not the expert in sick animals.
 
Old 05-15-03, 11:26 AM   #7 (permalink)
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er that is a live animal test is available
 
Old 05-15-03, 11:36 AM   #8 (permalink)
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RE; reverendsterlin

So one way or another, maybe I should just bring her in for a check up, get her checked for any mites and parasites, talk about IBD, etc.

There's no harm in just getting her checked

Jenn
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Old 05-15-03, 12:34 PM   #9 (permalink)
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You don't need to bring her to vet to have her checked for mites/parasites. Mite you can check for yourself, and parasites you just need a stool sample. Just like the IBD though, it is very unlikely that she would have mites/parasites if you have had her for 3 yrs. and not introduced her to any other animals, or handled any other animals and then her right after. Just out of curiosity, did you notice the staring into space and head shaking and the go read about IBD because of it, or did you read about IBD and the notice the head shaking and staring. If the later, it may just be a case of hypochondria.
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Old 05-15-03, 12:42 PM   #10 (permalink)
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if she's never had a check-up sure why not, mites watch your waterdish, fecal the snake doesn't have to attend, IBD most non-specialist vet's know less than you do about it.
 
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