Bad Puff Shed

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Bad Puff Shed

Postby Smeegle » Fri Aug 30, 2013 10:01 am

Hi Everyone,

I was given this baby puff adder about three weeks ago, but know nothing of its history. It went into the blue soon after I got it, but had a very bad shed. Only the skin on the top of the head and the bottom jaw came loose.

I have tried soaking the snake for an hour every evening since, but the skin won't come off. I have even tried soaking it overnight. It's as if the snake had been badly dehydrated at some stage, and now the skin is stuck.

I have had many baby puff adders in my life and have even bred them before, but I have never seen a problem like this.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated:)

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Re: Bad Puff Shed

Postby Westley Price » Fri Aug 30, 2013 10:11 am

I dont want to be a doomsday prophet, but I have seen those "raised scales" in some captive snakes.

The raised scales seem to not be the result of the bad shed, but rather the cause of it.

I have literally no idea what causes it, but all the captive snakes which had this symptom eventually died.

I hope your little snake only has a bad shed and recovers when the skink comes off.
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Re: Bad Puff Shed

Postby Mehelya » Fri Aug 30, 2013 10:40 am

What about a good soak, to loosen the skin, in tepid water, and then put it into a pillow case, and allow it to move against that? Can always add other things into the pillow case, like a rough sponge (not hard enough to damage the snake) or other softish items that can "catch" the skin? Maybe the constant rubbing would help remove the bad part of the shedding? Or else, if you're willing, head it, and slowly peel the shed off by hand, after a good soak?
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Re: Bad Puff Shed

Postby Whitelipp » Fri Aug 30, 2013 11:00 am

I would say soak it and when you see the skin soften up nicely, pin it by placing something soft like a sponge over its head. With this method you can apply enough pressure to avoid the snake from moving but also avoid risk hurting the snake.
Obviously if you can get it tubed it will be so much better.
Then proceed at removing the shedding piece by piece...

Good luck and stay away from the sharp end.
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Re: Bad Puff Shed

Postby Serpent » Fri Aug 30, 2013 3:03 pm

Smeegle I have seen this before with my neonate tree vipers, its a tough one to crack! But it came down to substrate and humidity for me. I would say that it is caused by dehydration over a long period of time, the wrinkled scales are from weight loss and poor health. Once the snake put on weight the wrinkles were gone and it shed the next month.

Keep trying to get it to eat small meals and encourage drinking, a small increase in humidity will also help. If all goes well it should shed both layers on its next shed.

Good luck.
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Re: Bad Puff Shed

Postby Smeegle » Fri Aug 30, 2013 3:56 pm

Thanks for the replies, everyone.

Westley, that is so true. The scales are definitely raised. I've never seen this before, wierd.

Mehelya and Whitelipp, I tried that, but the little guy doesn't want to move around at all. Normally they move around rubbing themselves against the cage decorations, but this puffie has no inclination to shed and just lies there. I did try and remove some skin with the tweezers, but it is stuck fast.

Serpent, I have to agree with you on it being dehydrated over a long period. I mean, surely that snake is from last season, almost a year old? Very small for a yearling! I will keep trying to feed it in the hope that its condition improves...

Thanks again:)
One of the most tragic things I know about human nature is that all of us tend to put off living. We are all dreaming of some magical rose garden over the horizon instead of enjoying the roses that are blooming outside our windows today.
- Dale Carnegie
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Re: Bad Puff Shed

Postby it_bit_me » Fri Aug 30, 2013 4:25 pm

It that the look of a puffy that was in a petrol container ?
If I'm gonna be an old, lonely man, I'm gonna need a thing, you know, a hook, like that guy on the subway who eats his own face. So I figure I'll be Crazy Man with a Snake, y'know. Crazy Snake Man. And I'll get more snakes, call them my babies, kids won't walk past my place, they will run. "Run away from Crazy Snake Man, " they'll shout!”
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Re: Bad Puff Shed

Postby Serpent » Fri Aug 30, 2013 5:03 pm

Get some food into him ASAP, even if you have to assist or force feed.
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Re: Bad Puff Shed

Postby Serpent » Fri Sep 13, 2013 5:51 pm

How's the patient Smeegle? Get anything down?
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Re: Bad Puff Shed

Postby Snakesitter » Fri Sep 13, 2013 10:10 pm

I'd be curious to hear, too. Fingers crossed!
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