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 Old corn snake not eating/digesting

Hey everyone

I’ve had my corn snake for 10 years now, he was an adult when I got him. So I have no idea how old he really is. Throughout the years of having him he has had a normal healthy life. Up until last year he has developed cataracts in both eyes and has not been feeding like he normally has. His body weight has gone down and it has been difficult to get him back to his old body condition.

So a while ago he missed a few feedings but was drinking water normally and passing waste (solids then the next became runny and green) I didn’t worry much about it until a month ago When i noticed a very firm lump about mid body. I brought him to the vet where we did X-rays and blood work. On the X-rays we found he has an enlarged heart and also found many bones inside his stomach. The blood work came back normal so I was sent off with antibiotics and fluids. A couple weeks later I went back for a checkup and the bones were still in his stomach, not much passed through at all. We then decided to test for cryptosporidium, which came back negative. We discussed surgery to remove the contents in his stomach what I was unsure about. We continued with what we were doing and I continued to think on my options. I just had a visit yesterday with the vet and things are finally starting to move along, but still a little bit in his stomach. We did a fecal float to test for parasites, And that also came back negative. Because I know it’s not a block and he can still pass things along I decided not to do surgery and try tube feeding or assist feeding. He has been off food for months now and I’m hoping he will start eating again and digesting normally.
The vet has never seen a case like his before and is very surprised but worried that he has gone on this long. It’s become quite frustrating not having an actual explanation for this since clinically he seems normal. The vet says there’s not much documentation on what happens to snakes in their old age and what happens to their organs over time. It’s all quite a mystery, I know surgery and taking a biopsy will probably give us answers. But not worth putting him through that if in the end he still won’t eat.

I’m just wondering if anyone has gone through something like this before, the doctor doesn’t seem to know what to do next and I don’t either.

It’s hard to get every detail in without making this a book so feel free to ask me anything about it.

02/24/18  04:02pm

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