Advice for ball python with cut near heat pits?

After one of my girls’ last sheds I noticed a dark mark around her heat pits. Looking closer it looks like a scabbed up area and it runs down toward her mouth. I checked inside her mouth and removed some shed skin that was lodged in one of the grooves in her upper mouth that was stuck to the scab area. Looked for any signs of infection or sores like redness or discharge in her mouth and don’t see anything. The shed I removed didn’t have any smells or anything either.

I’ve completely disinfected everything in the enclosure and got her on paper towels, and treated the hurt area on her heat pits with povidone iodine (betadine) as I would any other minor injury. I’ve also checked for anything rough anywhere in the enclosure and can’t find anything at all. Only things I can think of are maybe a missed strike during feeding or just an unlucky shed that damaged the scales there?

Given that this injury is on her head area I just wanted to take the extra caution to get any other advice on things to do or watch for to make sure this heals without any infection.


Pics. Would definitely help, but you are probably right in a missed strike, also might be just a rub or abrasion from substrate. I would do the same thing, paper towels and just watch her. You already disinfected the area, hopefully next shed it will be healed! Good luck!


I’ll probably snap some pictures in the next couple days. I just immediately jumped into protective mode trying to assess and fix up whatever was going wrong. I’m the kind of person that’s imagining up the worst possible scenarios in times like that :sweat_smile:


Same! I have a BP that went off food for about 3 months. After making sure my husbandry was on point I took him to the vet just to be told he’s perfectly fine and they will do that from time to time.

This morning I checked on her again and the scabby looking area cleaned up. I think the betadine washed up any dried blood or shed skin. It looks like a single scale between her heat pits is missing so I’m leaning towards just a weird shed. I’ve never had any problems with humidity or stuck sheds but I’ll be keeping an eye on that more. She seems as happy as ever though.

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