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Question
Posted by: Lee | 2004/11/24

Snakes and rats

I am wanting to buy my 10 year old son a snake, one that is harmless and does not grow to big. My problem is I have a fear of rats. Trust me when I tell you just the thought makes me girdy. So can someone suggested a snake that does not have to eat rats (???) andwhat else can it be fed?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberVet

Dear Lee

Firstly I would stress that one needs a permit from nature conservation to keep all indigenous animals, including snakes such as brown house snakes. These rules do vary from province to province, thus I would find out what the regulations are in your area before acquiring such a snake, seeing as fines of R20 000 or more may be levied. Another snake that stays fairly small, is not too difficult to keep and that one does not need a permit for is the American corn snake. These are harmless, usually quite friendly if handled often, and come in beautiful colours. One can feed other small rodents, such as large mice, rather than rats. A snake that prefers reptile prey is the king snake. However, most reptile enthusiasts end up feeding rodents even to these snakes (and it can be quite difficult to convert them) due to price and the fact that finding enough reptile prey to keep your snake healthy can become a problem.
Good luck

Dr Willemien van Wyk
Bird and exotic animal veterinarian

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Lee | 2004/11/26

In response to Me. Not a puppy because we have 2 dogs, a hamster and 6 budgies. My son has always wanted either a snake or a bearded dragon and the dragon is far to expensive. So the snake is my next option. Thanks for the idea of the house snake and we live in a home which is filled with geckos so I don't think we will have a problem feeding the snake with geckos.

Reply to Lee
Posted by: cc | 2004/11/26

many snake eg. the house snake, which makes the best pet, eats small frogs and lizards and geckos, so if you live by the coast, you will have plenty gecko's to go round, but up country, where its inpossible to catch lizards. the you will have to feed mice, they are not as bad as rats, and besides, stick the mice cage in a place that wont bother you, the smelly, and make your son feed the snakes, once a week.my son has to and he is 4 years.

Reply to cc
Posted by: me | 2004/11/26

Why a snake? Why not a puppy?

Reply to me

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