A bit of a back story: Years ago a close friend of mine got into reptiles when she moved out of her parents house. She started with a BP, and followed with several other reptiles. I followed in her footsteps and got my first BP, Kane, my pied. That was three years ago. Kane is a unit. I adore him and have acquired some other bps to eventually breed to him. First and fore most they are my pets. Friend never intended to breed, and due to a few things i won’t go into, her first BP died. at the end of 2021 I put her in touch with a friend of mine who i’ve purchased hognoses from, and who also breeds BPs. Breeder friend sold the close friend a really nice male with multiple genes, and she immediately started having issues getting him to eat. I gave her multiple tips and suggestions - starting off with making sure her temps and humidity were all correct, and then making one change at a time after that.
Here were are a quarter of the way thru 2023 and this three year old snake is 400-something grams, skinny and just not looking great. Friend who has him is expecting a baby in a few weeks, has NUMEROUS other pets, and had another animal that was struggling (genetic issue, leopard gecko with enigma syndrome) so i offered to take them both in and try and rehab. the leopard gecko was humanely euthanized after consulting with a few breeder friends.
I do still have the BP, and right now I am focused primarily on getting more calories into him. he’s super skinny, and he was pretty dehydrated when i first got him, had a nose rub over one nostril, and just looked pretty crappy. I put him into a tub immediately, make sure he had water, humidity and hides. He’s in a relatively small tub at the moment, just for ease of monitoring, and making him feel comfortable. he drank probably half of his water bowl in the first 24 hours i had him, so he was definitely thirsty.
Here’s few pic of him when i first got him a couple weeks ago:
Obviously he needs groceries. Here’s a pic of him after a shed, his nose his healed, hes looking not quite so yuck. Obviously still needs groceries, but there’s about a week between those pics and this most recent one. I did remove the shed he’s sitting on.
So far i have been unable to get him to take a rat. He’s obviously hungry, and is ALL about the mice i have when i offer. The mice sizes i have currently are not suitable for a bp his age and size (400 or so grams when i first got him). I have tried thawing rats in with mice when i feed. I’ve tried “scenting” a rat on a frozen mouse, next i am going to try scenting a rat with dirty mouse bedding. If that doesn’t work i’ll try rubbing mouse blood on a rat and see if that interests him. I would REALLY appreciate any other tips from more experienced keepers. I’m trying to avoid live if at all possible, that’ll be my last resort.