What to consider when getting a pet snake
While actually getting hold of a snake for your home is pretty easy, covering all the bases when it comes to the long-term care of the snake can be confusing and needs your consideration before you commit. Take a look at this handy list of things to consider:
Whether you are looking at getting a corn snake, milk snake, royal python or boa, size is a big factor that needs your consideration. You need to set aside a big enough space for your snake’s home, keeping in mind that they are likely to get a lot bigger later on.
Your little python might be a little sweetheart when you first get him, but some species of snake can grow to up to 5 metres or more in length and each species needs an appropriately sized home in proportion to their body size. Research on your preferred snake at this point is crucial to make sure you can accommodate them in the long term.
Cost of Running
While Swell Reptiles try to keep initial set-up costs low, putting them aside you still need to look at the running costs of keeping your new snake. Fortunately, due to a competitive market these are still quite low.
Take a look at what your chosen snake eats, how regularly they need to eat it and in what quantities. Make sure that its’ something you can feel comfortable feeding them too (e.g. rats or mice). You also need to look at how much heat you need to supply them from things like heat mats. This is going to cost you a little more on your electricity bill, but comparatively speaking these costs are still quite low.
Longevity & Nurturing
While your lifestyle and situation may be right for a snake right now, some species of snake can live quite a long time. You need to look at how long your snake is going to be around so you can plan ahead and make sure you will always be able to give them the time and care they need.
Snakes need to be handled from a young age to curb aggression, about once or twice a day to get them used to being handled and allow them to learn that you aren't a threat – you just want to give them a little love.
Most reptile enthusiasts will encourage you to feed your snake out of its habitat too, as feeding them inside the vivarium or rub can mean that they associate your hand coming into their environment with food, possibly causing them to strike at you.
Age and Competency
Take a moment to think about the other people in your home. You need to ask yourself whether some may be too young to handle a larger snake or one that’s too quick. Are they mature enough to handle the snake with the level of respect it deserves?
Most snakes, when treated properly and handled from a young age are not aggressive. However younger children and some adults may not be able to comprehend correct handling techniques and may increase the risk of injury to themselves or to the snake. Make sure the other people in your home are capable of dealing with your chosen snake and so they can enjoy the new company too.
Last of all, as silly as it may sound, think about yourself. Do you really want a snake? We certainly hope so, they are great pets and can be very rewarding and interesting animals. But we wouldn't want you to lose interest in your snake or neglect it. Make sure a snake is the right pet for you before you commit. If you have been thinking about it for a while and are reading this blog, the chances are the answer is yes.