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Possible RI

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  • [Respiratory] Possible RI

    Hi all!

    I recently acquired my first boa! He is around 6.5 feet long and about 4/5 years old.

    When i picked him up he was in a very large RUB (about 3.5 feet by 2 feet by 2 feet tall), with a heat mat, on orchid bark with a large dog bowl. I am in the process of building him a 6 foot by 2 foot by 3 foot tall viv so i can give him a bigger home ASAP.

    When ever i handle him, he seems to occasionally let out a loud hissing sound. He isn't actually hissing though, it is almost like heavy breathing every now and then. I have watched him in his RUB and he never does it while he is in there.

    I have read somewhere that large snakes do sometimes breath heavily when they are being particularly active, but i'm not sure i believe this.... what do you think?

    Thank you very much


  • #2
    Re: Possible RI

    My larger snakes that hold on tightly will do like a loud "puff" sound when moving and stressed out. Is this what you are hearing? Or are you hearing more of a wheezing, whistling sound?


    Intelligence is not how much you know, but knowing how to put the knowledge you have to use!


    • #3
      Re: Possible RI

      The key detail is that it's "when you handle him": a snake's internal organs, including the lung/s are long and when you handle them (ie. their body is folded more than when they are just cruising in the cage) it forces
      the air out of their lungs...and that's most likely what you are hearing...that forced exhale. The large boa I had for many years did that too...and that's all it was. When she (rarely) hissed, oh you KNEW it! LOL Your
      boa has also been in somewhat cramped being out and handled allows him to stretch & really fill his lungs for a change. He may also be a little "out of shape".

      I commend you for asking the right questions and also for making him bigger living quarters. I am also not guaranteeing that it's NOT a respiratory issue, but it doesn't seem likely. Keep up the good work!