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Dealing with Bad Sheds

Sammy

New Member
5 Year Member
For most snake species the best way to deal with bad sheds is to keep your humidity around 60% all the time. Doing so will prevent 99% of bad sheds from ever occurring in the first place. Of course that is not always as easy as we would like it to be. Inevitably you are going to have to deal with a bad shed sooner or later. There are a few different methods I have used to deal with bad sheds over the years, but the following method has been hands down the most effective way to get rid of left over sheds.

All you will need is an appropriately sized plastic tub (Sterilite/Rubbermaid) with the lid, a hand or bath towel, a wash cloth and some warm water. You want the tub to be big enough for your snake to lay in comfortably. They don't need room to crawl around or stretch out in the tub, but just big enough to comfortably coil up in. Also, you don't need any air holes, the lid on the tub will leave enough of a gap to provide plenty of air for the short amount of time the snake will be in there.

First you need to fill the tub with enough warm water (not hot by any means, if you can measure the water temps, 85-90 degrees would be ideal) so that when you put your snake in it the water level will be about 1/2 the way up your snakes back. Your snake should be able to lay comfortably in the tub of water and not have to swim by any means.

Once you have the tub filled with water and your snake in the tub, put the lid on the tub and place the tub with the snake in it on the warm side of your snake's enclosure. This will keep the water and your snake warm and allow the water and warm moist air to loosen the left over shed. You will want to leave your snake in the tub like that for 45-60 minutes.

After the 45-60 minutes, remove your snake from the tub. Hold your hands firmly around the snake but loose enough that the snake can crawl through your hands, this should peel most of the left over shed right off. If you run into any problem areas take the wash cloth and dip it into the tub of water the snake was in and gently but firmly work on the problem areas with the wet wash cloth. After about 5-10 minutes your snake will start to get a little irritated with this. At this point use the hand/bath towel to thoroughly dry your snake and return him to his enclosure.

If all of the left over shed did not get removed, repeat this process in two or three days. Rarely have I had to do this procedure more than twice to get all of the left over shed removed from a snake.
 

DaveDragon

Active Member
1,000+ Post Club
5 Year Member
I also put a couple of drops of snake oil in the warm bath. This seems to work with all our reptiles. Works like a charm every time. Helps to heal any abrasions as well. :D
 

snakehandler

New Member
5 Year Member
I also put calendulan emulsion on the old skin.
this works wonderfull as the skin loosens within an hour.
 

InsertExpletive

New Member
Thanks for the post. I have a scrub python going through a really bad shed. I tried soaking him (step for step almost exactly the same as you described) but I had him in the soaking tub for a MUCH shorter time because I wasn't sure what was appropriate. I'll definitely try again with a longer soak time, and use the washcloth as described (on my last attempt I just used my hands, which was somewhat successful but not completely). Thanks again for sharing!
 

Strange_Evil

Member
5 Year Member
In the rare event when I do have a snake whose having a tough time shedding,
I put them in a tub with warm water and I also put a rock in, works like a charm!
 

Strange_Evil

Member
5 Year Member
Friction. It gives them something to rub up against to help get
The shed off, I recently had a spider ball shipped to
Me while she was in shed, needless to say that night she had bad
Shed. I soaked her with a brick, of course not a ridiculously rough one, she got every piece off in about 30mins maybe less.

Sorry about the weird format,
My phone keeps skipping lines and this auto text is driving me nuts.
 
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