Apex Vets has this advice for wannabe snake owners
July 14, 2022
To celebrate World Snake Day (Saturday 16th July), the team at Apex Veterinary Centre are using this event to share interesting facts about snakes and increase awareness of how we can care for and enjoy these wonderful creatures.
World Snake Day – Snake Facts & Care
Did you know there are only four species of snake native to the UK?
We have the adder, grass snake, smooth snake, and barred grass snake. Plenty of people however keep more exotic species of these wonderful companions.
Popular snakes for beginners include:
Whilst they can make a great pet, choosing to keep a snake is not a decision that should be taken lightly. As well the specific type of care they need, there is the welfare aspect to consider too.
Contrary to popular belief, snakes are neither cold nor slimy and most species are not dangerous to humans. Some can be relatively easy to keep in small spaces, as their lifestyle doesn’t require a lot of exercise.
Where do you get a pet snake from? The animal’s welfare and wellbeing should be paramount when buying a snake, so it is important to research sellers thoroughly. Alternatively, some rescue centres in and around Stirlingshire may have snakes available for adoption.
There is a lot to consider before starting your reptile adventure so here are has shared a few things below to get you started.
Housing & Equipment
- Being ectothermic, snakes rely on their environment to maintain the correct body temperature. For this reason, you will need not only an appropriate size and type of enclosure, but also appropriate heating equipment.
- The size and set up of the enclosure for your snake depends on age and species. Like any new pets, make sure you do lots of species specific research before buying, and set up the enclosure in advance so you can make sure it gets to the right temperature.
- All snakes are carnivores and most like their food whole – be prepared to keep frozen rats, mice, and insects. Keep any other small pets well out of your snake’s reach!
- Small or young snakes may need to eat twice a week, but some larger ones can go much longer between meals.
- Like all animals, snakes need a plentiful supply of fresh water too.
Exercise & Enrichment
- Snakes need exercise and enrichment to stay happy and healthy. Some species may benefit from branches for them to climb up and rocks to slither around and under inside their enclosure or vivarium.
- Some snakes like to have a pool in their enclosure as they occasionally like a dip – it is important that this is kept clean.
We hope this article has inspired you to look into what it means to keep a snake as a pet.
If you own a snake and have concerns about their health, call us on 01324 829 989 to book a health check.
Keep an eye on our Facebook for further snakey posts.