PLEASE HELP

Pythius12

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My snake (7 m/o stimsons) was eating a mouse side ways and looked as if she was about to split her mouth. I tried to get her to let go but couldn't so tried putting tweezers with a tiny bit of tea tree oil on them near her face (I heard thats how u get them to stop eating if needed) it accidentally touched her face. It made her let go but after doing so my sister looked it up and found tea tree oil is highly toxic to all reptiles.
I gave her a bath straight away and wiped her face with wet cotton tips but she was still freaking out and opening her mouth as if trying to regurgitate. I tried to feed her a different mouse but she wouldn't take it.
Did I really just poison my baby? Is she going to die?
Please I can't find anything online, any info will help.
 

Herpetology

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should have just let her figure out she was either going to get the mouse down uncomfortable, or let it go and reposition it herself

I would be organising a late night vet trip if its acting strange, or a long wait till the morning if you want to take the risk

For future reference:
Never use any sort of essential oils to make a snake let go, infact never use them around reptiles, either let them figure it out (theyre going to either regurgitate it or eat it (uncomfortably) the best way to get a snake to let go is run its head under LUKEWARM water, or get some strong smelling alcohol and waft it underneat the snake
 
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Pythius12

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Thank u for the reply.
She is slightly injured but alive and acting normal now. Going to give her a few days before I try to feed her again.
I had to do something to stop her eating the mouse as I could see she was hurting herself. As a result she currently has 2 stretch lines under her jaw and slightly split the corners of her mouth.
I tried to take the mouse away with the feeding tweezers but couldn't get her to let go.
I only used the oil as I had read that if a snake is eating itself or something it shouldn't to use tea tree oil.
I now know never to do anything like that again.
Thank u for the information I really appreciate it.
 

CF Constrictor

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Hi Pythius12
As previously stated, you should just let the snake sort it out without any intervention. The injuries you described could have been caused by you trying to force the animal to let go. My carpets occasionally eat their meals backwards or even sideways. If they can't get it down, they will spit it out and try a different angle. If it's to big they will simply give up on it. Happy to hear it's ok though. Best of luck.
 

Pythius12

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Hey CF Constrictor, thank u for ur message.
I know ur supposed to let them figure it out, I never have interfered with her feeding before.
She frequently chews on the front arms of the mouse and tries to eat from the middle, this being the first time she didn't reposition.
I only interfered this time because I was actually watching the 2 stretch lines appearing as she continued to try and force it down. The mouse seemed to get stuck, she was moving her mouth but it wasn't going down her throat. Her mouth was completely full and it wasn't going any further.
This is when I gently tried to take the mouse off of her.
 

CF Constrictor

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Fair enough, they do have very flexable but rather fragile mouths though, and can look extremely contorted (stretched out of proportion) while eating. I have never had to intervene while bringing up my 3, and on several occasions, I've seen them try to eat a questionable sized meal, only to give up if they can't get it down. Just saying, in my opinion it's probably safer just to let the snake sort it out. Cheers
 

Bluetongue1

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Due to circumstances have not been on the forum for a few months and was just catching up when I read through this thread. Though I may as well throw in my two bob’s worth…

A cotton tip soaked in mouthwash (alcohol-based) or methylated spirits, wafted near a reptile’s nostrils, is a simple and safe way to get the reptile to release its bite. Both contain a high percentage of ethyl alcohol - the alcohol present in alcoholic drinks. Neither is toxic like tea tree oil and the amount in a cotton bud is pretty minimal. They are also water-sluble and so can be readily wiped off with a wet cloth. It is a good idea to keep a small quantity of either in an airtight container with a cotton bud close handy. Hopefully you’ll never need to use it.

To properly remove an oil, one needs to add some mild dishwashing detergent to the washing water, as oil is not water-soluble. With a toxic oil, time is of the essence and you need to stop its effects as quickly as possible. This can be done by adding a non-harmful oil, such as coconut oil, cooking oil (e.g. olive, safflower, peanut or almond) or baby oil to it and mixing this in while wiping off the toxic oil. The two oils will mix, reducing the toxic effects and allowing the nasty stuff to be removed and replaced by harmless oil. Then you wash the remaining harmless oil off with a cloth wet with soapy water. Note: While laundry detergent is very good at dissolving oil and grease, it is caustic on skin and should NEVER be used on reptiles.

It is worth knowing that the above technique can be used to remove grease, fat or coloured oil spills from something it might stain. Use a colourless oil, such as baby oil, to first ‘dissolve’ it. Do not rub the baby oil in, but use a toothpick, toothbrush, or similar, brushing in an upwards motion to mix it. Then use paper towelling to gently soak up what you can. Repeat until the area appears clear, then you can use warm soapy water to remove what remains of the baby oil.
 
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