How To Pet A Snake?

How to pet a snake is a common question among snake enthusiasts. Though snakes are one of the popular pets that have become common for many people in Asia, South America, North America, and countries that have climates and forest that creates a proper habitat for several kinds of snake species. Snakes may be somewhat different from the usual pets like cats, dogs, or hamsters, but they have a good camaraderie with humans which was not known until people started keeping pet snakes, especially from the snake’s birth. It is a better way to tame a snake from its birth as it can easily adjust to a given lifestyle compared to taming a wild-caught one. Besides that, snakes are fascinating animals that can be fun and entertaining as well.

What Type Of Snake Should You Pet?

There are several species of snakes in the world from different areas and climates. There are snakes that climb trees, burrow through the ground or soil, swim in water surfaces, or spend time living on the ground. Some snakes are easily adjusted to human contact and some are not too friendly. Here are some snakes that are the best type to choose for a pet:

1. Corn Snake

The corn snake was one of the most popular snakes available. It has a docile nature and is easy to handle with care. This snake comes from North America and has beautiful color combinations. This snake also does not need a big enclosure, about 20-gallon is enough, and they are not too hard to breed. You need a screen top and a good heating device with plenty of water available. The corn snake likes to feed on rats and mice. It is not too difficult to feed either. This snake also lives as long as 10 years or even more depending on how you take care of it.

2. California Kingsnake

The California kingsnake got its name because it is capable of eating and killing snakes including rattlesnakes, which are known to be one the most dangerous snakes. They are good beginner snakes too although they have some time to adjust to handling. They love hunting down and eating snakes, even the venomous ones, and also feed on small rodents, lizards, birds, and eggs too. The Kingsnake grows up to 3 to 4feet long and can fit a 20-gallon enclosure easily.

3. Rosy Boa

The Rosy Boa may not be as popular as other snakes but it is common among hobbyists. This snake is a docile one that grows up to 2 to 3 feet only, which makes it quite easier to keep in a medium-sized enclosure as long as it is given space and proper climate to live in. The Rosy is available in reptile stores or on the internet, especially as hatchlings. It also lives a long life up to 25+ years. This snake comes in a variety of colors. Its enclosure should be escape-proof with a screened top because it has the habit of looking for an escape way.

4. Gopher Snake

The gopher snake is a common snake from hobbyists and comes in a variety of morphs or colors. This snake can be found cheaper at local reptile shows and it grows about 4 to 5 feet on average. They have a heavy body and can live up to 15+ years. The gopher snake prefers to feed on pinky mice when younger and rats at an older age.

5. Ball Python

The Ball Python is one of the most popular snakes that have many morphs available. This snake has a shy demeanor that makes it a more interesting snake to pet. The female grows up to 5 feet and the male grows smaller about 3 feet. Ball pythons live long around 30 years in captivity. A 30-gallon enclosure is good to go for them to survive and you can add a few hiding spots due to its generally shy nature and provide water bowls large enough to allow them to soak in.

Do Snakes Like Being Pets?

do pet snake like to be petted

The answer to this question is that snakes are a lot different than the normal pet animals that we would choose. Dogs, cats, and rabbits have their own way of expressing their emotions or attachment to humans. Whereas, pet snakes have a completely different relationship with their owners.

Different snakes have different attitudes and it depends on how they are handled, when they were adopted and the nature of their lifestyles as well. Wild-caught snakes are the most difficult ones to tame as a pet and it is a better option to pet a snake from its birth. This gives them time to let the snake get accustomed to handling and its surrounding.

Sooner or later, they will start to get used to any human interactions. Your pet snake will show a sign of uneasiness or squirm away from you if they are not ready to interact. If they don’t then it means your pet snake is ready to be your pet.

When Not To Pet Snakes?

It is sometimes difficult to tell if your pet snake likes to be a pet or not. Snakes in general will not want to be pets unless or until they are accustomed to the owner. If you do not have the ability to provide the snake with the required enclosure and setting then it is wise not to keep a pet snake as yet. The snake will need a suitable environment and a proper diet provided. It will need the appropriate temperature and humidity for it to survive. Here is why you should not pet snakes: –

  • There are many snakes that may not like to be handled at a younger age. Therefore, we need to understand when it is safe or less threatening for them
  • Many snakes are venomous, and it is wise not to keep them as pets unless you are experienced to handle venomous snakes for a period of time
  • Wild-caught snakes are another difficult kind to handle as pets as they are used to living in the wild and will find it difficult to interact defenselessly

How To Pet A Snake?

In order to make your snake a good pet and behave well with you, it is best to know how to first handle it. Many snakes take time to interact and allow a human to handle them, but with time it soon gets accustomed to you. You will need to know when is the right time to hold your pet snake and handle them softly so that they can feel safe. Also, it is better to give the snake some time to get accustomed to its new surrounding and enclosure. Observe whether the snake is feeling threatened and not eating for some reason. We have to make sure the snake is given the exact food that it has been eating before being brought as a pet.

What To Feed Your Pet Snake?

All snakes have their own favorite diet. Some like frozen or thawed food and others prefer to live caught food depending on the species and size or growth of the snake. Most of the common food are – Small mice, rats, birds, rodents, or rabbits. They eat warm-blooded animals as well as insects and amphibians too. Snakes even like eggs, other reptiles, fish, earthworms, and slugs. There should also be plenty of water available for the snake, especially in a large bowl where it can soak itself also.

Where To Keep Your Pet Snake?

Pet snakes should be kept in a vivarium, which is a specially made enclosure or cage with glass doors. They could also be called a terrarium, tank, or half-filled aquarium. Their enclosure solely depends on the nature or lifestyle of the snake. For example, snakes that are more active will need a larger enclosure compared to less active snakes. Again, on the other hand, some snakes like to be in the water while others like spending time on the ground or climbing trees or bushes. Also, the right kind of substrate is needed to provide a natural setting for the snake. The most common substrate used is aspen besides sand and rocky material. Food and water should be provided at all times according to the snake’s requirement. It would be best to research a bit on the feeding habit of the snake before that.

How To Handle Your Pet Snake?

handling a pet snake

As it has been mentioned before, a lot of snakes may not like to be handled often, especially at a younger age. It is better to give some space at first and let them become used to their environment that is provided. At an early age, the snake is more difficult to handle and it will take some time to get used to it. Snakes like Royal Pythons and Corn snakes don’t need much time to handle including their youngsters. You need to give them a day or two to adjust. The best way to hold your snake is to place one hand near the head and the other under their tail and try to support their whole body. Also, you need to give them at least 24 hours after they eat until you can handle your pet snake.


In order to pet your snake well and healthy you need to follow all the guidelines regarding food, enclosure, handling, and treating your pet snake successfully. As it has been mentioned here any snake that is non-venomous and a good beginner as a pet should be chosen in order to avoid any problems. Snakes have different characteristics and living styles, so we should know about the snake before taking them into our homes. A good research should make it easier for the owner to know how to handle the snake, and how to make it at home.

1 thought on “How To Pet A Snake?”

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