Things you need to know about owning a snake
July 7, 2023
World Snake Day – Sunday 16th July
In celebration of World Snake Day, the team here at Apex Vets are using this event to share interesting facts about snakes and increase awareness of how we can care for and enjoy these wonderful creatures.
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 includes:
• Corn snakes
• Rat or Kingsnakes
• Ball or Royal Pythons
Whilst they can make a great pet, choosing to keep a snake is not a decision that should be taken lightly! s well as 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. Though it is important they have enough room to move about, feed etc.
Where do you get a pet snake from?
The animal’s welfare and well-being 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 a few things below to get our 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 other small pets’ way 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 & Equipment
• 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 really means to keep a snake as a pet.
If you own a snake and have concerns about their health, call us on 01324 829989 to book a health check.