Advice for rescued BP

I have taken in a female normal BP (Kaa) that was originally surrendered to my mom’s coworker but then given to me soon after.

This is only my second snake and I don’t know what to expect regarding any possible health issues that may crop up, etc. since the animal was previously poorly kept.

Kaa is 2 and a half years old and was kept in a 10gal glass tank her whole life. She’s got good body condition and eats well, but she’s only 2.5 feet long. I don’t know much about BP growth but I feel like she should be longer?? Other than the size she actually seems to be in pretty good shape.

I will weigh her and post pictures in the morning.


If you have a local vet that deals with snakes specifically, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to take her in for a M.O.T and check that any undesirable husbandry hasn’t caused issues. If not then you can give her a good inspection to see if there is anything that stands out to you.

Check her eyes, pits (holes around the face) and creases of her mouth for stuck shed or injuries.

Firmly run your hand down her body and feel for lumps or kinks… Check your hand for mites.

Check her belly for scars, sores or signs of scale rot.

Check her vent opening for any lumps or deformities.

Check her tail for stuck shed or scars of previously stuck shed.

Listen to her breathing. Do you hear a clicking noise/ wheezing (not heavy breething but actually wheezing)/ gargling noise?

Now something to take in regarding size. When you are watching breeders on YouTube or seeing breeders pictures on Instagram, remember that these guys feed on a strong diet plan.
Your snake doesn’t necessarily need to be the same size at the same age.

I am the same age Arnold Schwarzenegger was here, yet his biceps weigh as much as my whole body… I’m not unhealthy because I’m not this big.

Annnyway, congratulations on your new housemate and keep us updated :blush:


@eaglereptiles First off I want to say thank you for the advice! I did my best to evaluate her when I first picked her up, but I didn’t really know what to be checking for aside from stuck shed and mouth rot, so having your checklist to go through really helped ease my mind. I already knew she had/was having issues with stuck shed, but it seems like that’s really the only thing wrong with her.

I tried to measure and weigh her, but she wasn’t interested in sitting still. The best I can figure is she’s approximately 28in long and weighs about 428g. That’s a dubious 428 though since she kept trying to slither out of the weighing tub.

The size really was my biggest worry, so I’m glad to hear that it isn’t as concerning as I was fearing. As I said, I don’t really know much about the expected growth rate of ball pythons. It’s hard to tell sometimes, and since her original owner also surrendered a male spinner her same age that was easily a foot longer and very overweight, I wasn’t sure how much of that size was due to overfeeding.

My only question left is: how do I get the stuck shed off her head? Soaking and picking got the rest of the stuck shed on her body off (I wish I had taken a picture but all that stuck shed was a pitiful sight, I felt so bad for her) but there’s still a large patch of the top of her head plus retained eye caps. Should I leave them and wait for them to come off in her next shed?

Pictures (sorry for the potato quailty):
The girl in question

Her old enclosure (snake for scale) (pun intended)

Her new enclosure


If you are having some issues, theres a great read on treating stuck shed HERE

Good luck! :snake:


You are welcome :blush:
As for the shed issue, I second Tahllias link above :+1:

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If you continue to keep her in a tank with a screen lid, chances are you will continue to see bad sheds, because tanks like that don’t hold humidity well. I’d recommend switching to a tub, or at least covering most of the lid with plastic wrap.


I have her in a tub, the tank is what she came to me in and what her old owner had her living in the past 2 1/2 years. I’m sure her sheds will improve now that she has better husbandry, I was mostly asking about what to do for the last bit of stuck shed I couldn’t quite get off.

@tahllia89 Thank you for the link! I read through it and there are some things on it I’m going to try. I’ll post an update if it works


Haven’t been on morph market for a while, forgot to post the update!

The tips above worked like a dream and Kaa is thriving.