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Thread: Healthy weight?? Slowing down for winter??

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    Healthy weight?? Slowing down for winter??

    Hi guys,, my garter has been skipping the majority of her meals now that it's cold outside. The last time she ate was about a month (maybe more) ago which was a large piece of f/t silverside. At night her temps drop down to the mid-upper 60s, I was wondering if you think this may be too low for her. I'm thinking she's holding her weight pretty well, but I still have my worries so a second opinion would be great! (photo attached) Any advice on getting her to take/anything at all would be much appreciated. I've been a huge worry-wort over this baby for awhile now! Thank you:))
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    Re: Healthy weight?? Slowing down for winter??

    She does look underweight to me! However, if the temps in her enclosure are going down to the mid to upper 60's at night that's too cold for sure. Has she been taking f/t pink mice at all? Has she ever had f/t mice at all? I would think she should have more size by now also. What weight do you have her at? I would definitely make attempts to increase the night time temps, then that would be the first step in seeing how she responds.
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    Re: Healthy weight?? Slowing down for winter??

    Holy cow Ninya! Now I am wondering if I made a mistake on the sex of the individual California red sided. Can you post a few pictures of the under tail including a pic of the cloaca and the part of the tail past it to the tip. We can get a consensus of the sex of the animal. Someone pointed that out to me and it's totally possible I missexed this individual. In any case, it's a 100% guarantee. That would be the other possible explanation for the small size. I do think she should have a larger head and body by now. Also, should be pounding large pink mice to small hairless hoppers/ peach fuzzies. And the tail looks too long to truly belong to a female. Try and get the close ups of the under tail as best you can will be helpful. Thanks...
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    "PM Boots For Custom Title" Albert Clark's Avatar
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    Re: Healthy weight?? Slowing down for winter??

    Also Ninya, can you let us know what the daytime temps are in the enclosure and how you are heating it? That will be helpful as well. Thanks. Really nice setup you have there. Males typically will not eat as much as females also so that's another consideration.
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    Re: Healthy weight?? Slowing down for winter??

    Sure!! I'll supply pictures for sexing when I get the chance, s/he isn't big on being handled. I meant mid/upper 70s haha sorry about that!! She hasn't taken any f/t pinkies but I'll offer them again and see if she takes. S/he took almost every meal I offered up until about 2 months ago (especially when it was silverside). :/ Expect pictures either tonight or tomorrow as i'm quite busy today. Thank you so much for the speedy reply. I heat with those multiple feature basking lamps but i'm considering switching to a UTH with thermostat. Her hot side is in the high 80s when i'm home i can get exact temps for you. Thanks!
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    "PM Boots For Custom Title" Albert Clark's Avatar
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    Re: Healthy weight?? Slowing down for winter??

    Quote Originally Posted by NinyaCap View Post
    Sure!! I'll supply pictures for sexing when I get the chance, s/he isn't big on being handled. I meant mid/upper 70s haha sorry about that!! She hasn't taken any f/t pinkies but I'll offer them again and see if she takes. S/he took almost every meal I offered up until about 2 months ago (especially when it was silverside). :/ Expect pictures either tonight or tomorrow as i'm quite busy today. Thank you so much for the speedy reply. I heat with those multiple feature basking lamps but i'm considering switching to a UTH with thermostat. Her hot side is in the high 80s when i'm home i can get exact temps for you. Thanks!
    That's great!! Upper and mid 70's is still basically room temperature and these guys need a focused heat source day and night. Unless you are preparing to cool/ brumate the individual. So i still think that range is sub optimal for total comfort and normal behavior of the animal especially over time. UTH and thermostat is a preferred way to keep a handle on your enclosure temperature and of course it's in conjunction with the ambient room temperature that the enclosure is located. Oh, i know it's going to be difficult getting those pics so whenever you can is fine. Hopefully we'll get the members to weigh in on the sexing . The target temperature that is optimal for these guys is 84F - 88F warm side and a cool side retreat in the 77F - 80F range . Ambient temperature in the enclosure will possibly fall in between these ranges based on the ambient room temperature the enclosure is in.
    Last edited by Albert Clark; 12-12-2017 at 12:03 PM. Reason: Clarification.....
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    Re: Healthy weight?? Slowing down for winter??

    Quote Originally Posted by NinyaCap View Post
    Sure!! I'll supply pictures for sexing when I get the chance, s/he isn't big on being handled. I meant mid/upper 70s haha sorry about that!! She hasn't taken any f/t pinkies but I'll offer them again and see if she takes. S/he took almost every meal I offered up until about 2 months ago (especially when it was silverside). :/ Expect pictures either tonight or tomorrow as i'm quite busy today. Thank you so much for the speedy reply. I heat with those multiple feature basking lamps but i'm considering switching to a UTH with thermostat. Her hot side is in the high 80s when i'm home i can get exact temps for you. Thanks!
    Also, if you have the xs (extra small) pinky mice bc that may be a easier swallow based on her/his size. Or option B would be to cut the regular pinkie in half (lengthwise) while still frozen, and then thaw and offer in a shallow dish with live cut nightcrawler mixed in.
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    Re: Healthy weight?? Slowing down for winter??

    I'll go out sometime this week to pick up some x/s pinkies and a UTH+Thermostat to better her temps. :P I'm looking ahead to a musk frenzy in attempt to get these pictures! Haha
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    Re: Healthy weight?? Slowing down for winter??

    Quote Originally Posted by NinyaCap View Post
    I'll go out sometime this week to pick up some x/s pinkies and a UTH+Thermostat to better her temps. :P I'm looking ahead to a musk frenzy in attempt to get these pictures! Haha
    Try to get the nightcrawlers too! That's the best investment you can make is the thermostat w/o a doubt. I know very well about the musking, if you try and be slow and measured as you pick her up that may help. i find they get more excited and defensive when they perceive sudden quick movements versus slower. Just something to think about when picking them up. Hahaha..
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    Re: Healthy weight?? Slowing down for winter??

    Sure thing! Already have some nightcrawlers I'll go slow but I think it's still guaranteed, musking is his/her favorite past time activity haha. You've been a huge help )

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