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REPTILE HEALTH (accidents-intestinal compaction)

ACCIDENTS: serious injuries can be avoided with proper caging and handling. The most common accident is injury from a rodent bite. Never leave a live rodent alone with your reptile, rat or mouse bites can injure or kill a reptile. If your reptile gets injured from a rodent, cat or dog, or being dropped, you need to contact a vet as soon as possible.

CUTS: you can treat minor wounds by swabbing them daily with hydrogen peroxide. With any major cuts, scrapes, or lacerations the snake might need an antibiotic to ward off infection. If the reptile's wounds are seriouse you should contact a vet to give the reptile proper care.

DYSECYSIS: when a reptile has problems shedding it might mean that the cage does not have high enough humidity. Don't pull or tug any unshed skin. Soak your reptile in lukewarm water and give them a rock or stick to rub on. If you must you can try to pull back the unshed skin very gently or go to a vet. Make sure snakes sheds their eye caps.

INFECTIOUS STOMATITIS: usually a well-taken care of reptile will not get mouth rot. If yours does you will notice swellings around the mouth, the animal might not be able to completely shut the jaws, and they could stop eating. To take care of mouth rot a daily swabbing of hydrogen peroxide, povidone-iodine, or sulfamethiazine in affected areas can help. In severe cases, or if the infection doesn't improve in a week, call your vet.

INTERNAL PARASITES:with internal parasites a snake will lose their appetite, lie on their side, and have bloody or loose excrement with a foul smell. Once these signs are noticed you should keep the reptile away from others and see a vet for medicine. To avoid parasites keep your reptile in a very clean environment.

INTESTINAL COMPACTION: a reptile suffering from this will have a distended and tight abdomen and will not want to move or will roll on their back. Sometimes a gentle, careful massage will help the blockage pass. If not, or if blood is found in the stool see a vet soon.