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If You Don’t Like Snakes, Please Come Back Tomorrow

Pet sitting had been lots of mammals up to last weekend, but now I’ve entered into the reptile realm!  Honestly, it’s freaking cool!!!  Welcome to the world of snakes…

Pet Sitting Snakes

Dogs are cute, furry, and fun to play with.  They also have accidents once in a while, need lots of socialization, and are the primary reason people call pet sitters like me.  So most pet sitters are dog sitters that then decide what other animals that they will watch.  And even the dog sitters sometimes avoid certain breeds like Pit Bulls.  I didn’t limit my options.

This past weekend, I pet sat for an awesome family with 1 dog, 2 guinea pigs, 3 cats, a fish, and a ball python (Silas).  The dog was ADORABLE, the guinea pigs chatted away to each other, the cats like rough head pets, the fish was a fish, and Silas the snake never even moved out of his house.  But I had met him up close and personal at the pre-meet.  :-)

Silas the Ball Python Snake

The Big One

Then I received a call from a very distraught trucker.  If he couldn’t find someone willing to take care of his lavender reticulated python, Sephoria, he’d have to get rid of her…and she has meaning way beyond a normal pet.  He and his dad literally hatched her from an egg about a year ago, and his dad passed away since then.  :-(

Sephoria the Lavender Reticulated Python Snake

Okay, so the picture doesn’t do her justice.  She’s 10 FEET LONG!  I had to at least meet her, right?  I really, really wanted to help this guy keep his snake.

I met her yesterday, and it was easy.  She’s a tame snake.  I just picked her up (well, some of her at a time), let her slither around her room, and then put her up.  Later on, she was fed her frozen rabbit for the month, but I couldn’t stay long enough to see her actually eat it since that seems to take hours.  No, I will not have to feed her unless there’s an emergency.

I was just hired to visit her weekly while her human is on the road.  I’ll be picking her up and making sure her water is clean.  I’ll also be throwing crickets into a small aquarium for a tarantula.  And here is where some of you will laugh at me – I am doing this about 15 minutes away from me for $25 a visit.  I figure the entire trip will take less than 1 hour and I am helping a very sweet man keep his sweet snake.

Safety

I do understand that a snake that can grow 10 feet in its first year can be dangerous.  I  won’t let her wrap completely around me anywhere.  I won’t be feeding her, so I won’t be risking food aggression.  I learned today that if she ever decides to latch on to me, putting hand disinfectant on my hands and touching her face would make her detach.  So there will be disinfectant near me all the time.  And when she puts on another few feet, my hubby will be going along with me.  He’s always liked snakes anyway.  :-)

So, if you are still reading, is it because you like snakes too?  Think I’m a little crazy?  Comment away!!!  Oh, and if you want to see a picture of her eating, just let me know.  :-)

 

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6 comments to If You Don’t Like Snakes, Please Come Back Tomorrow

  • omg! You are far more brave than I am, girl! I’d be running for the hills. And incidentally- how can you tell if a snake is sweet???? Major kudos to you- I couldn’t do it!

  • I have to admit that I am a bit scared of snakes. That said, it is great that there are people like you who are braver than I am and are able to help out owners in need. One word of caution I would offer is to be extra careful around the snake later in the month (or should I say, a month after she was fed her monthly rabbit) as a hungry snake is more likely to be aggressive. But it sounds like you have a great safety plan in place already. Tell me, what is the benefit to you picking her up while you are there? Is it just to give her some added attention, or is there a more specific ‘snake-related’ reason?

  • @Dee, I don’t think it’s bravery when that isn’t one of your fears. Now, I hate heights that don’t have major barriers between me and the ability to fall, so if I was walking across that see-through bridge that is above the Grad Canyon, that would be brave. ;-) You can tell a snake is sweet when it never lunges for you, LOL. Seriously though, this one shudders from happiness when I pet her. Like a happy dog.

    @Denise, they can actually go 2-3 months without eating, so I should never be around when she is getting hungry – she is well fed. I need to handle her to keep her tame. Tame snakes can revert after a while to being defensive if they don’t continue getting human contact regularly. Like feral cats.

  • I actually like touching live (non-venomous, of course!) snakes. They are so smooth and warm. I don’t have one as a pet although I know some people who do.

    As an aside, I have exactly the same fear as you! I’m OK in high rise buildings and planes because there is glass/structure around me. But driving or walking across high bridges or on roads in mountains or along coastal cliffs terrifies me! Did you ever have a big fall when you were a kid? I’m trying to figure out why I have this fear and what to do about it.

  • @Linda, nope, no big falls. I think the fear of falling is just one of those ingrained ones like with snakes…

  • Wow – nice job! As someone who has kept exotic like snakes and spiders I’m quite jealous of you :-)