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Any advice for a new snake owner?

Asked by ihrtyoshi (45points) January 5th, 2014

So, I got an albino nelson milk snake Saturday January 4th at the Scott Smith All Animal Expo in Wheaton Illinois.

This is my first pet snake ever, but not my first reptile (I had an aquatic turtle when I was younger). I’ve done A LOT of research about milk snakes, and snakes in gerneral but I’m still nervous, and paranoid being a newbie to owning snakes. I noticed when I first got him out of the container he was in, he still had a patch of old shed. I’ve read that if a snake is having trouble shedding to soak the snake in some water and it will help remove the shed, which I did. First question is, did I do the right thing, or should I have waited for the snake to just remove the shed itself? I also fed him a fully thawed pinky mouse Saturday. My next question is, when can I start handling my snake again? I should have asked when was his last shed, and how old he is. But his shed should have been recent since he still had some old shed left on, and he is fairly small so he shouldn’t be no more than a few months old. Next question is when should his next shed be? What signs should I look for when he is going to shed.

I have a very simple set up of his tank. It’s just paper towels lining the bottom of the tank, with two hides, one on the warm side, and one on the cool side, oh, and a small shallow water dish. I also have a heat pad under the tank. Should I have anything else in his tank? How long does it usually take for a snake to calm down and start getting use to being handled? How often should I mist his tank? I usually mist it when the humity is below 40%. How do you sex a snake, and how can you tell the difference between the two sexes? I’ve read and watched videos on how to pop your snake, but I’m just too anxious to do something like that especially since it would be my first to doing so, and the last thing I want to do is harm or put any unnecessary stress on my snake. Is there another way I can sex my snake?

So, those are the question I have for now, and I can’t think of anymore. So I would love to hear from you guys, and read comments on what I should do to make sure my new snake can live a healthy full life. Thanks for taking the time in reading my post.

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