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  • [Skin] Stuck shed on jaw



    As u can (kinda) see she has stuck shed on her entire bottom jaw. I've had her sense Dec 5. She eats every 10 days and never refuses. This is her second shed with me and the first it also stuck. I tried soaking and massaging with cotton balls the first time but didn't want to stress her too much sense I just got her. I figured it'd come off this shed. But no luck so this time I've been trying a little harder sense she's comfortable with me but I don't want to piss her off too much. She is soaking right now and I scrub at it every 10-20 mins but I don't see any improvement I'm gonna keep working on it but any help will be much appreciated!!

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  • #2
    Re: Stuck shed on jaw

    If soaking her isn't working, I hear that if you rub a little bit of mineral oil on that spot it will help soften the skin. Try not to let it dry out. What kind of enclosure are you keeping her in? If you have problems with humidity in a glass tank, I would think about using a large plastic rubbermaid bin (that locks), until you get some sort of pic cage. Plastic cages will make life so much better and easier for the both of you

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    • #3
      Re: Stuck shed on jaw

      They make little rubber thumbs for counting money, those give you very good grip on the shed skins. I would probably use a side to side motion and not a back to front for reason of not messing with the scales. Front to back does not look plausible without chance of getting bit. I'm not sure how to soak to get it because boas don't tend to like to have their face under water long enough for the shed to become wet again.

      When a boa goes blue you can bump the humidity to 70% and that should help with the sheds. Certain cage styles naturally have humidity issues which is why PVC (plastic) cages are usually prefered by some people as they don't absorb humidity and don't let the humidity escape.

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      • #4
        Re: Stuck shed on jaw

        Snake chins are just one of those places (like tail tips!) that don't always shed nicely. I personally wouldn't use ANY sort of oil (& FYI, mineral oil originates from petroleum, fyi) as it tends to stay in their skin & make
        things worse in the future.

        If that was my snake, I'd cuddle her for a while with a damp cloth against her chin, then very gently help to peel that dead skin away. It's easier going from front to back (if you pull that tag of skin, you're going
        the wrong direction- against the scales- & it's likely to just break) so VERY gently with your finger/fingernail loosen the skin at the very front edge of her lower jaw, then pull it gently from the front toward her tail.
        (***be very CAREFUL that your hands are as clean & sanitized as possible & that you don't nick her inside her mouth or you could cause an infection***you only loosen the skin at the edge-)

        This is one of those times that you'll be very glad that you've gotten your snake "used to" the occasional & gentle head restraint. If you haven't, this will be more of a challenge (& I do see that you haven't had her
        very long). Ah well...this too shall pass. In my experience with many snakes, if you gently persist to help with things like this, they seem to catch on that you aren't trying to eat them; they won't LIKE what you
        are doing...and they often try to wriggle out of the situation, but I cannot remember any snake that ever bit me for doing such things, if that helps any?

        In the future, as acephantom903 said, you need to monitor your humidity & possibly raise it when you see your boa is about to shed. A larger bowl of water will also help raise the humidity at that time.
        And hey, I never thought of using one of those rubber thumb tips (sold at office supply places) but that's a great idea! They cost very little & would be a safer approach than your bare finger.

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        • #5
          Re: Stuck shed on jaw

          As far as 'gentle head restraint', you gently close you fingers around a snake's face as they crawl over (thru) your hand. Any time you have to medicate a snake (or do something similar), it's a fine line between
          holding too tightly (which WILL backfire!) and knowing just how firm you can be before you need to give a little & re-group...so that you do get done what you need to, but the snake isn't traumatized. I guess what
          I'm saying is that I don't mind if the snake "wins" (gets loose) part of the time*...they're allowed to win a few 'battles', just not the whole 'war'. LOL (*it's actually better, since too much force sends the wrong signal,
          namely that you are a predator up to no good!) So when I work on a snake for any reason, I am NEVER in a hurry. A little 'give & take' will help your snake learn to accept without panic.

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          • #6
            Re: Stuck shed on jaw

            Can you provide a video link or something? I'm a little confused on how you mean. Worst case scenario is that if you can't find one, you can record what you mean and put it on youtube as unlisted and provide a link. I would record and show if I knew what you meant.

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            • #7
              Re: Stuck shed on jaw

              Originally posted by acephantom903 View Post
              Can you provide a video link or something? I'm a little confused on how you mean. Worst case scenario is that if you can't find one, you can record what you mean and put it on youtube as unlisted and provide a link. I would record and show if I knew what you meant.
              Sorry....but no. Just remember that it's "give & take"...never be so fixed on doing what YOU want that the snake feels overly-restrained & forced. When they wiggle loose sometimes, no big deal. Like I said, don't be in
              a hurry...snakes are very "good sports" when given some consideration, a little time & a gentle touch.

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              • #8
                Re: Stuck shed on jaw

                Originally posted by Noelle7206 View Post
                As far as 'gentle head restraint', you gently close you fingers around a snake's face as they crawl over (thru) your hand.
                This is the part that is confusing. I just can't picture what that looks like. I know what you mean about how to gently restrain them, but others might not and I'm trying to clarify it for readers who might not understand.

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                • #9
                  Re: Stuck shed on jaw

                  Originally posted by acephantom903 View Post
                  This is the part that is confusing. I just can't picture what that looks like....
                  I don't see how I can make it any clearer? Just put yourself in your snake's place...you wouldn't like to feel over-powered either. If you are so worried about your snake biting you that you feel you must put a choke-hold
                  on him/her, then I guarantee that's exactly what WILL be on his mind (self-defense, the moment he gets free of your grip). When you handle animals, trust is a two-way street.*

                  (*I'm not saying to ignor safety rules: if you're handling a large constrictor, they may well use their whole body to fight back when you do something they don't approve of...so if you need extra 'hands' on deck, by all
                  means, have help standing by. What I am saying though is that WE communicate our intentions to snakes by HOW we touch & handle them...I've had very good results by handling them as I'd want to be handled if I
                  were in their place. And the more you scare a snake with excessive force, the harder time you have in the future...they're not stupid...they do seem to remember, otherwise they'd not remain tame, ya?)

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                  • #10
                    Re: Stuck shed on jaw

                    Sorry I haven't responded I got 75% of it off doing what you guys suggested. The last bit is the very tip and is a pain but she has definitely gotten used to it. I just work a little ever few days to give her a brake. She's in a Rubbermaid 70qt and humidity is always around 70 in the house and I bumped it up to 90 before this shed. I think when I let it go last shed it made it a pain for this one but I'm gonna work on it a little more today and hopefully she'll be as good as new. Thank you all for your help. A lot of good info. I'm gonna have to get one of those rubber tips just in case


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                    • #11
                      Re: Stuck shed on jaw

                      I figured I would post update pics. I got all this skin off she looks good as new

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                      • #12
                        Re: Stuck shed on jaw

                        yay. Sorry that I never got around to making a video explaining how to restrain them without stressing them too much.

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