Young male carpet python quit feeding...

Dear VPI,

I have a 2 year old male jungle carpet python that has refused meals for the last 2 months.  I had no problem switching this animal from mice to rats over a year and a half ago and rats are all he's been eating since then. He has always been an eager feeder and has never refused meals until 2 months ago. 

He seems to become more active when I'm feeding mice to the other snakes in the snake room. I don't want to try giving him mice again for fear that he may not return to rats.  The snake doesn't look like it's losing any weight.  How much longer can the snake go without eating? When is concern appropriate? Any suggestions? 

Thanks in advance.




Dear Andrew,

Assuming he’s healthy and not too stressed, he can go for more than a year without eating before he would be in any sort of trouble. However I doubt that will happen. Male pythons just quit feeding sometimes.

Most often it means that they can smell a receptive female somewhere near. But sometimes they just quit. He probably just sexually matured and he’s enjoying a blast of testosterone. 

Our policy for male pythons that are not feeding is that if they look healthy and they act healthy, and the only troublesome thing is that they are not eating, we don’t worry about it.  DGB