Introducing Mt. Etna. The owner left her at a family members house and never came back. She is much larger than they were prepared for so they called us for help.
Like most rescue snakes, Etna arrived with a mild case of mites – no surprise there. She was in a house with mixed dirt and moss for substrate. Almost all the rescues we take in that had that kind of substrate are found to have mites. The granular substrate makes it very hard for their owners to see the mites and impossible to get rid of them. We use puppy pads covered with layers of brown paper. This lets us keep everyone very clean. We are able to see problems and address them much faster using this type of substrate.
Etna also had no swimming tub in her previous home. The first thing she did when she got here was drink a gallon of water and then soak herself. We made her get out of her water and changed it right away after only 24 hours knowing she was dirty and that we might be able to see mites in it. Sure enough the water was brown with dirt from under her scales and had the occasional mite floating in it.
Etna was fairly overweight but a proper diet plan and regular exercise will get her healthy in no time!
This picture below shows Sara sitting next to her filling out her Mite treatment card. This was her first of at least three frontline treatments. We coat the entire snake AND their enclosure with a light misting of frontline and let it dry. That means the hides, the paper substrate, enclosure walls, everything. Since she is in blue and craving water she will wash the frontline off right away but that’s ok since her enclosure and furniture is all coated with it too. We will do this again after she sheds then repeat it every 2 weeks for two or three more treatments.
She is a big girl and hasn’t been handled much. We will be spending quite a lot of time with her to help her get stronger and learn how to be around people. So far her behavior is very calm and curious suggesting she will become an excellent education snake.