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Old 09-06-16, 06:24 PM   #1 (permalink)
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First post, first Python zero experience

So as the title says this is my first Python (and snake altogether) and I guess you could say I adopted it. A buddy of my didn't want the responsibility anymore so I said I'd take him. I don't know really much as stated above but I've wanted one for a while now. He gave me a pretty dirty tank with a water dish in it and that's it. Apparently it has a heating pad under the bedding,which I plan on swapping out with new stuff asap. I believe he's neglected the snake for a month or so and I'm curious on what I should do. Any and all advice is welcome and greatly appreciated. Do I clean the tank inside and out? Should I feed it right away? I read somewhere that I should try and handle him for about a week? Any thoughts on that. Have patience with me as I am a new Python owner. Thanks in advance.
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Old 09-06-16, 06:35 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: First post, first Python zero experience

Welcome! And congrats on your new buddy.

Cleaning the tank should definitely happen. You can try to offer food once he's all set up again, but don't be surprised if he doesn't take it. If it's still a young snake or small, try again in 7 days. If he's larger, wait 14 days before offering again. Handling should only be attempted after 3 consecutive successful feedings take place.

Good luck and keep us updated! Also, we always love pics around here, so don't be shy to show him off!
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Old 09-06-16, 06:44 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: First post, first Python zero experience

Sweet thanks for the reply!
My friend said he's 3 years old. Looks about 3.5 ft long. Also he said I need to get him something to go under and hide.

My question is, should I go right away and buy bedding and something for him to hide under and like a big branch to go up on and complete his tank tonight. He literally dropped off the empty tank and the snake in a box to me at work.

Also does it matter what side the light goes on or do I put it in the middle?

I tried browsing a little but didn't see any "Python care for dummies" threads.



Sorry if I sound like a noob but I am so.....
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Old 09-06-16, 06:49 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: First post, first Python zero experience

Sweet thanks for the reply!
My friend said he's 3 years old. Looks about 3.5 ft long. Also he said I need to get him something to go under and hide.

My question is, should I go right away and buy bedding and something for him to hide under and like a big branch to go up on and complete his tank tonight. He literally dropped off the empty tank and the snake in a box to me at work.

Also does it matter what side the light goes on or do I put it in the middle?

I tried browsing a little but didn't see any "Python care for dummies" threads.



Sorry if I sound like a noob but I am so.....
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Old 09-06-16, 07:09 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: First post, first Python zero experience

First things first what kind of python do you have? There is a pretty good chance it is a ball python, but you know what they say about assuming. If this is the case the lamp may be unnecessary, unless the heat pad is too small. How big is the tank you received? Definitely clean the crap out the tank with reptile safe cleaner and get new bedding. Make sure you do not get pine or cedar bedding. Other things you will need right away are two cover objects he can hide under completely, a thermometer, and a thermostat to control the heat pad. You need to put a hide at each end, one over the heater and one on the cool side. The thermostat is a must so you do not burn the snake. Next you have answer my questions for us to help you more thoroughly.
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Old 09-06-16, 07:13 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: First post, first Python zero experience

Also until you have a thermostat the snake is safer with all heat sources unplugged.
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Old 09-06-16, 07:14 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: First post, first Python zero experience

Welcome and best wishes Travis. Like Meso said, do you know what type of python it is? You can use Google to find basic care sheets on most snakes and there's lots of experienced keepers here that can help as well. I wouldn't feed or handle the snake until you get the husbandry dialed in. Do you have a thermostat to regulate the temps on your heat source? If not, don't use the heat mat just yet. Please share a picture of your snake and setup when you can.
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Old 09-06-16, 07:21 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: First post, first Python zero experience

Welcome.
Everyone starts somewhere.

I saw in your other post you have a ball python. I know nothing of them. I can only ramble off the basics.

First off is HEAT. Two things are needed for this:
Heat source: Ceramic Light Bulb shining down (no exp on this) or an under the tank heater (UTH). I use a radiant heat panel, but it is a bit pricey. At least mine was.
Thermostat: No, you CANNOT just plug the heat source into the wall. You get burns and worse from that.
With these two, you create a temperature gradient and a hot spot. It all depends on what species you have. For mine, I have a range of 90 high to 80 low w/ a hotspot of 94~ that never gets used.

Next, hides. Preferably two that they can cram themselves into. One for each side of the gradient.

Lighting, placement not a big deal. Mine is in the center. It is plugged into a wall socket with a 24 hour timer. I got mine as 7:30am to 8:30am.

Food, slightly larger than the width of the body. Others can help you better on this than I and it constantly comes under debate there. As I recall, the older the further apart these meals using that same metric.
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Old 09-06-16, 07:22 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: First post, first Python zero experience

Here's the snake. I don't know what stage of shedding he's at but he's shedding a little.
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Old 09-06-16, 07:24 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: First post, first Python zero experience

And the tank. Like I said he dropped it off to me at work and the tank is filthy to me so I'm gonna clean it for sure tonight. The heat pad looks about the size of a sheet of paper. No thermostat
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Old 09-06-16, 08:16 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: First post, first Python zero experience

Honestly, I would dump the bedding and just use some paper towels. Treat him as if he's from a stranger. Also, since he's shedding, try to give him a soak in luke warm water and use a damp cloth to gently rub it off.
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Old 09-06-16, 08:22 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: First post, first Python zero experience

Ok! I'll probably do paper towels temporarily. So get a thermostat, a hide or 2, and clean the tank are my first "to do's"

And I shouldn't try and feed him for a week or so? He said he hasn't eaten in about a month.....
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Old 09-06-16, 09:34 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Re: First post, first Python zero experience

You can try to feed him once you are all set up. He may take it, he may not. I have had some snakes eat the same day I get them from being shipped. But others have gone on strike for months. Depends on the snake. I always like to offer.
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Old 09-06-16, 09:36 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Re: First post, first Python zero experience

Yep and then read some ball python care sheets to better understand your animal. Here is a good one:
Ball Python (Python regius) Caresheet
As far as that shed goes it is no doubt a bad one but I would let him settle in for a few days before trying to deal with it. To help get that off soak him in a bath with just enough water to cover his body. The temperature of the water should be room temperature to slightly warmer. Let him sit in there for 30 minutes and the shed should start to come off. It may take more than one soak, but to avoid stressing him I would give him a day or two between soaks. Also as stated if he does not eat for you the first try do not freak out and just try again in 10 to 14 days. Feel free to ask us anymore questions you may have.
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Old 09-06-16, 11:28 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Re: First post, first Python zero experience

cool thank you guys


i got 2 hides, one on the side with the UTH and one on the other side. a temp probe for the UTH and thats it for now.

ill keep posting progress and pics.

im very excited on my new friend thanks again
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