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  • Need some advice bad....

    I have had my RTB for about 6 months now, maybe a little more, and she has never been agressive. She has always been a great eater, always been healthy. I have kept her at the same temperature the whole 6 months,80/93 with humidity in the 60's. The problem is I came home from school on tuesday walked past her cage and she struck at the glass. So I thought maybe I just scared her. I got closer to the cage and she started striking repeatedly at me. So I left her alone. I came home the next day and she did the same thing. So for 4 days now I cant get near her without her striking. She isnt in a shed cycle so I have no idea what the problem is. I fed her during all this thinking she was hungry but still she strikes. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated. :-/

  • #2
    Re: Need some advice bad....

    I've had mine to that once, as with you I was a bit freaked out by the whole thing. I found out that she was just pissed off at me because I haven't taken her out for awhile.


    • #3
      Re: Need some advice bad....

      Just because the eyes arent milky doenst mean its no in a shed cycle. My Male Xander never showed any signs of shedding, eyes clear , skin still brightly colored and i came home one night and i found him shedding the last bit off. So its a possiblity thats its begun a shed cycle. Another thing i find it that live fed boas become more agressive than others so if you live feed the boa its possible a rat or mouse hurt it (nibble, scratch, ect.) and the snakes on the defensive. My friend had a BCC which he live fed and the rat scratched the boa up pretty bad, it was so agressive after wards that he called me to get it out of the cage with one of my hooks.


      • #4
        Re: Need some advice bad....

        Have you noticed the poo being runny... or any signs of alments... Sounds like she/he is being a lil' pissy... It could be the food thing and it could be shed but have you checked on the heat in a while... make sure it is as low as it is suposed to be and stuff like that...
        But all in all sounds like my rosy did.. he turned out to be fine when fed enuf... I found out I was feeding to lil''...
        I wish I could help more...


        • #5
          Re: Need some advice bad....

          I always feed her frozen and she isnt in a shed cycle cause its not time for one yet. Her poopy is normal, big brown turds. Thanks for the help, I guess I will have to wait and see if she gets in a better mood.


          • #6
            Re: Need some advice bad....

            Just to clarify for the newbies, just in case they misread, but we know you are feeding frozen "THAWED" ;D

            Sure don't want any snake sickles....

            It is not abnormal for a boa to "instinctively" strike at a sudden movement or heat source. But to do so repeatedly, there will usually be another sign.

            This is an example and may or may not be what happened with your boa.

            If a boa or boas have been fed recently, it could have been a feeding response. Remember a single flick of the tounge and a boa inside an enclosure will still know that there is/were rodents in the room.

            You could have witnessed a feeding response and not even realized that the smell of rodent could have still been in the room....

            Other than that, it could have been pre/post shed or even ill...
            To gain knowledge is good, but to share knowledge is wise

            -Best Regards
            -Clay English
            Founder 1998-2013


            • #7
              Re: Need some advice bad....

              Wow, I had the same experience on Saturday!!!!! I registered to this forum just for this very reason! :'( I have a female Boa, almost 7' long. I have had her for a year and have no idea how old she is.
              Saturday, I held her for about 15 minutes then let her roam around my room like usual. I feed her pre-killed rats and I have never even seen her strike! But as I was getting her out from underneath my bed she got sooooooooooo pissed. As you know she is very strong and it took me quite a while, but when I finally got her out, she whipped her head around to face me and then went to the 'S' position. I knew right away she was going to bite me. As I was telling my 2 year old to get out of the way she bit my arm. The shocking part, it didn't hurt. It was like a puppy dog that bites their master out of fear. This was so out of character for her!!!! I was scared to even pick her up! I finally got enough courage to do it. She sat in her water tub for 2 days until I finally took her out because she was worring me.
              Now she's acting like a totally different snake! When I go to check on her it looks like she is stalking me. She flinches and jerks and has hardly any tongue flicking. (which i hear is a bad sign) She has been in the 's' psition since Saturday it seems. I keep trying to come up with all of these different excuses. Here is what I have come up with. Maybe she was hungry and I didn't realize. Maybe she smelled the sent of my other boa on me. I did, move her cage to a different room before this happened. Maybe she sensed my nervousness by the way she was acting. maybe maybe maybe. I just don't know. It's sooooooooooo frustrating!!!! :-/


              • #8
                Re: Need some advice bad....

                I get asked about this problem more often then I wished. But truth is there are so many possible reasons from feeding, stress, shed, could be a mating responce, etc.. Most should just pass in time. I know with a 7 foot fat snake it can be intimidating, very much so. I won't suggest you do what I would do, but here is what I would do,.. Not give in to the intimidation. I would hold the snake more then normal, just watching and trying to interviene a "Tag" from the snake. I always make sure the snake doesn't get in my face. Lets face it, if your gonna get tagged, the face is the next to last place I would want those teeth. If the snake is also wrapping tighter then normal I would wrap arond my hip and opisite shoulder. This way you can avoid a neck squeeze. May not be a bad idea to have someone else in the room while you are working with the snake until it snaps back to normal. I know I will take heat for this part, but if I am working with a biter I always keep a mini bottle of rum in reach. If I do get tagged and it doesn't release, I splash some on its head. Its irritates the mouth of the snake and they will release the bite. But keep in mind, they tend to be abit pissy after words..LOL I myself would keep working with the snake and try not to get a suprise tag. Keep us updated on both snakes mentioned in this thread..

                Good luck
                Steve Clark


                • #9
                  Re: Need some advice bad....

                  Wow hope my baby never gets like that, it'll freak the sh*t outta me :P being my first snake and all...



                  • #10
                    Re: Need some advice bad....

                    I know I have posted this before, but I'll share it again. My bp got pissy all of a sudden. she had been fine, easily handled, etc. one day she suddenly struck at my daughter out of the blue, then the next day, while she was sitting on my shoulder she struck at the same daughter again. the next few days, if anyone went near the tank, she would follow their movement, and strike. I continued to handle her, just to see if eventually she would go back to normal. Once out of the cage, she didn't strike at me, but everytime my daughter came near, the snake would act like it was stalking her. finally, I put her in the bath tub to soak in warm water, after about 20 min. or so, she had a bowel movement, which was very hard. Seems she was constipated, and it was very uncomfortable for her to be held. I have had no problems since. The 2 day soak really makes me want to look at that as a problem, because snakes absorb fluid through their skin, which in turn, helps regulate their bowel movements. And it can't hurt anything.
                    But if you do this, make SURE the water temp is not to warm, remember, what feels good to us is VERY hot to a snake.
                    Good Luck



                    • #11
                      Re: Need some advice bad....

                      Thanks for all the reply's.  I feel more confident so that's a good thing.  I don't have any rum Steve but will Tequiela work?   ;DJust kidding, I don't have the guts to do that.  I am glad my boa (Ezzie) did not decide to latch on and start constricting but I have noticed that she has been squeezing harder.
                      I will definetly just keep holding her often to try to loosen her up.  But I will make sure my husband is home.  I have asked him to hold them more often also.  I also have a 4' (Jezebel) who I got about 4 months ago.  Total sweetheart.  Both of my snakes are affectionate and will rub their faces on mine but I will try not to let Ezzie do it until she is done spazing out.
                      I have a couple more questions for anyone who will answer.
                      #1  Should I take away her hiding spot to try to tame her out of this rut?
                      #2  Is it true that if I stick my shirt in her cage after I have worn it that it will get her used to my scent? (although she should be used to it by now)
                      #3  I feed Ezzie (7'-er) 2 large rats every 2 weeks.  Is she getting enough?
                      #4  Can my snakes sense my tention when I am nervous?

                      Thanks again to those of you that have answered so quickly.  And in advance for those who will relply! :P


                      • #12
                        Re: Need some advice bad....

                        Hi SaKSTa

                        Glad your gonna try to work through the problem instead of have the snake take over and you leave her be..

                        I know you were joking, but any alcohol will do. I just prefer clear rather then brown colored..) Some even dilute rubbing alcohol, but I figure if we can't drink it neither should they.

                        (1) do not remove the hide. The snake will still need to feel safe..

                        (2) Do not put a shirt or a rag in with the snake. I have gotten a few rescues that have swallowed shirts and bound up. I have never had luck with the sent trick, but if you want to try, but a worn shirt on top of the enclosure assuming you are using a screened top cage, tank, etc..

                        (3) As for feeding, it really depends on the girth of your snake and exactly what size large rats are in your area. Your snake if the normal girth of a 7' RTB could eat one or two large, or jumbo rats, or a small rabbit..

                        (4) I do believe they can to a degree. If you are feeling tense, just don't make fast moves. I think when it comes to snakes. I was glad I took a few bites. I know what the feel like and are never as bad as you would think. Don't get me wrong I never enjoy a bite, and would hate one from a 7 footer. But in 99% of bites they hit a release. Never heard of a 7 footer biting and wrapping to kill. They are just too small to think of human as prey, so you are only left with a defensive bite (tag and release). One snake I had to use the alcohol on was a retic. It tagged my fore arm and wouldn't let go with out a drink of Alcohol..

                        I also noticed that someone mentioned it could need a soak to do a bowel movement.. Thats a good idea and won't hurt at all.. try and hour long bath for her/him..

                        All the luck with calming him back down..

                        Best Regards


                        • #13
                          Re: Need some advice bad....

                           I wanted to mention a few things about boa's and other snakes that I've noticed after keeping them for a couple years.
                           They can have mood swings depending on digestion,shed, being sleepy, and that mating thing coming on. So the bottom line is they can at any time be grumpy and without any warning make a strike jesture.   We forget they are not that far from the jungle and I frequently try and  pretend they are sweetie pies .. SO try and read that body language, I have picked up snakes in petstores that have bit other people .. You never know when they are gonna have a mood swing, I tell my kids don't rush them don't put your face in their face, I suggest all boa owners wear some type of glasses or eye protection there have been a few unexpected bite to the face. Try and keep 1/3 of the body lenght away , when I show my guyana i try and keep a safe distance from new people.My snakes don't like alot of action around their heads or necks..  SOme snakes try and protect what ever they are on, thats why she may be lunging at your daughter, a sort of stay away thing.
                            With time I am sure she will be fine just be careful although boa's can  retract their teeth they can make some nasty scratches to eye..    
                          ther's a nice article in Germany about a bite to the face. at Herman S. page.its half way down the page.
                          PS the person that was bit made a stupid feeding mistake.sounds familar I have been bit a few times on feeding day my self.
                          On the pages of "News & Information", we inform you about news and interesting facts about boa constrictor.

                          ALthough many topics and concepts on that web page are purest in nature some of the origins and research info is useful I don't agree with his breeding concerns... hehe :P


                          • #14
                            Re: Need some advice bad....

                            Well everyone, I am a wussy. I have only held her 2 times since the tag and it's been 3 weeks. :-[ I am so bummed. She is acting a lot better. (I think) I am just so darn nervous. I almost feel betrayed or let down. When I go look at her, I think she is flinching more than usual. Prolly just my nerves getting the best of me! Sad thing is, I haven't hardly held my other boa because of this insident. Am I the only one who has felt this way? Any ideas how to bounce back? Man, I feel soooooooooooooooooooooo bad.................. s34.gif cwm36.gif


                            • #15
                              Re: Need some advice bad....


                              Same advise as before. Its not uncommon to feel betrayed and abit scared. Lets face it, they are fast and strong. I know it doesn't help much me telling you what I would do, but maybe a story about my first bite might help.

                              About 2 years ago I got a pair of Blue beauty snakes. Now they are not boa's but trust me they are long and strong. The day i recieved both of them. I unpacked the box, and each snake was in a seperate plastic container. I unpacked the female, she was about 6.5 feet. She was super fast and strong, but no bite, got her in the tank no problems. Now I unpack the male, he was acting jumpy, almost darting, but not leaving the plastic container. So I figured I should just put the plastic container in the tank and tilt him out. Well while tilting him, he shot out and tagged my right upper knuckle of my thumb. It happened so fast, didn't even know if he bit me till I say many little dots of blood starting. To be honest the bite didn't really hurt muc, but my heart rate shot through the roof, so much so I felt dizzy and shakey. It was pure adrenilyn. When they settled in a few days and I wanted to handle them alittle I was so jumpy about getting any of them out. Now keep in mind I have had snakes for several years, but this was my first bite. I desided that I would not let any snake I am keeping as a pet intimidate me. So I figured lets get some gloves and handle this bad boy. For the next two months of handleing him he bit my gloves more times then I can count. I even brough this guy into the schools to show the kids how fast a snake can strike. It became a battle of wills. Well anyway. About 4 months passed and I ditched the gloves and wanted to see if he would tag me. Most he ever did after that was hit me with his nose. I learned what he felt like when he was gonna bite, and it became a game. I even used to tap him on the nose or straightened his upper neck when he getting ready to strike. He did over come this problem and taught me more then alot of my snakes have. I also learned that he would strike at things white more then anything else.

                              Not sure if this helped, but try not to give up on your snakes. Sire a bite from a big boa can hurt, but try to work him out of it. Just keep him away from your face.

                              If you just can't get over it, try to find these guys good homes. (if you need help feel free to ask). and maybe start over with a baby boa and grow the trust again.

                              Good luck and keep us posted.
                              Steve Clark