(whoo hoo! first time poster!)
im curious how often everyone handles their reptiles! breeder, or just keepers.
as a keeper, I try to handle my three snakes 3-4 times a week(providing no one is shedding/digesting)
and as for my geckos, I handle both my leo and my crestie 1-2 times a week!
Once a month everyone gets touched between deep cleans. Other than that, I’ve stop trying to hold specific things constantly. Everyone is chill enough to be handled and when I’m in the mood I pull something out. My crested gecko comes out everytime I open the door wether I want him to or not.
Besides the 48 hours they require to digest after I feed, I handle mine every day.
I usually do 20 minutes in the early mornings around 2am, then before I head to work I get another quick handle in for about 5 mins.
When I get home from work I try and have each one out for a hour.
But I keep reticulated pythons and they need to be trained more than the average snake. They don’t stress like some species( most commonly balls) when handled every day. And when you can have a snake that can reach long lengths, they need to be tame and confident when out.
Also I find the best way to give your snakes enrichment is to offer them time outside their enclosure.
When I used to breed, I would handle daily too, just not as long of a time frame. When you have a lot of hatchlings and or snakes, you can only handle so much.
Outside of shedding, recently eaten, or obviously not in the mood, I hold my ball python for 35-60 minutes a day.
I have pets and breeders. Some of them I hold more often than others depending on the snake. I try to go by the individual snake and what they are comfortable with. Out of my 14 there are 7 I can handle anytime I want and 2 others I can handle without worry of strikes. Everyone else is handled only when needed (feeding and cleanings) otherwise they are hands off strictly. Partly why so many in my collection are like this is because of my own lack of time to work with them and get them used to the idea. But there are 2 that would and will always be overly defensive and against any amount of handling.
Besides handling required to move them during general enclosure maintenance I try to hold them everyday (except when they eat and need to digest). During a average week I maybe spend 2 hours each day in my reptile room. Even if I don’t need to handle or do maintenance or feedings it is sort of my chill out spot after a long day.
For all the bp’s, I try to handle everyone at least 1-2x a week to “keep them used to it” aside from shed/digestion times. I also have a carpet hatchling and a dwarf retic hatchling that require quite a bit more work/handling except in shed or digesting, they are both works in progress and still think everything that moves is food,
I handle my retic about 1-2 times day for a few minutes.