Ball Pythons

What To Do When A Ball Python Bites? – From Pain Levels To Treatments

What to do when a ball python bites;

(Please scroll down to the bottom of the page to find ‘Other related articles you might like’, once you are done reading).

Do not panic

Ball python bites are not serious or harmful and are generally thought to be painless. Your first instinct may be to pull away instantly. But you should NEVER do this. Pulling away from a ball python whilst they are latched on will only cause a tighter hold. Ball pythons have teeth specially designed to keep hold of wriggling prey, which actually get deeper into the prey as it struggles. This is no different with humans.

Usually a ball python will quickly release a human as it realises you’re not food, or a threat to its safety. It may just be that it’s a little stressed and doesn’t want to be handled, or simply that it’s hungry and has mistaken you (your hand) for food.

Removal of a latched ball python

Give your snake a minute to calm down. Once latched the initial shock is over. Ball pythons jaw aren’t that strong, so the pressure afterwards will be very minimal. Most commonly they will release you pretty quickly. 

If your ball python refuses to let go there are a couple of methods you can try to unlatch them. Firstly its recommend to try pouring some cold water over the latched area. The shock of cold water should usually be enough for the snake to unlatch itself.

If this doesn’t work, then option two is very similar. You just have to replace the cold water with something a little stronger. Vodka, Whisky, Gin. Any alcohol with a high concentrate. This is known as the most effective way to remove any snake from being latched, not just ball pythons. Alcohol is harmless to snakes, and they will definitely not enjoy it, so they will be quick to unleash themselves. 

Treating the bite

You will likely not have to worry about visiting a doctor after a ball python bite. They aren’t venomous so there’s no need to visit a specialist. That said, snakes can carry some potentially harmful bacteria, so you could visit a doctor if you’d like to be on the safe side.

Alternatively, a ball python bite should be pretty harmless. It’s best to quickly wash the latched area and treat with an antiseptic wipe. If antiseptic wipe aren’t available, then pouring vodka over the wound will also sterilise the area. However this may sting a little. 

Once treated, cover the wound with a bandage just to keep the wound safe from your day to day doings. This will decrease the chance of infections. After a day this can be removed. You shouldn’t be in any danger from infections after this point, once the wound has dried and healed. 

If on the very rare occasion the bite does become infected, then please seek advise from a doctor.

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Hydrometer – Click Here

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