How to Properly Handle a Snake

Have you recently acquired a pet snake? These scaled beauties make excellent pets, but they aren’t just for show. Each snake has a very different temperament. Some seem to enjoy being handled, while others clearly don’t like being touched. You can help shape your snake’s opinion on whether or not being picked up is an enjoyable experience. Read on for some tips from a Fayette County vet on how to properly handle a snake.


The best way to ensure that your snake is calm when being handled is to help him feel calm when he isn’t being handled. Your snake doesn’t need scented candles or soft music to unwind. What he does need is at least one hidey-hole where he can retreat when he wants to feel secure. Your snake’s little home should be dark inside, and it should be small enough that your pet fits inside snugly.

Don’t Move Quickly

If you move too quickly, you can startle your scaled pet, which may cause him to panic and try to fly. Always use slow, steady motion when handling your snake.

Limit Distractions

Choose a quiet time to handle your snake. Other pets, too many people, a noisy environment, or other distractions can all make a snake uneasy, and can cause it to dislike being handled. Instead, hold your snake while you’re relaxed.

Be Gentle

Snakes are both predator and prey animals. In the wild, snakes live solitary lives, and generally being grabbed or restrained will only happen when they are being attacked. Be very mindful of how you hold your snake. Make sure you are supporting your scaled pet’s weight, but not holding him too tightly. Using a firm, but relaxed grip will help keep your snake from feeling threatened.

Give It Time

Snakes aren’t known for making quick assessments. Your pet could take quite a while to grow accustomed to his new owner and habitat. While your scaled pal is in this adjustment period, keep contact short. Never try to handle your snake if he seems irritated. Instead, choose times when your pet seems relaxed.

Remember to always wash your hands before and after handling your snake!

Please contact us, your local Fayette County veterinary clinic, for all of your pet care needs. We are here to help, and we always strive to provide our clients with the absolute best veterinary care possible.

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