Acquired: Wild caught / rehabilitation animal,
Online breeder / seller,
Bred animal myself,
Posted May 08, 2013
The Western Hognose is a family of snake that is not nearly as popular as they should be. Small, only about two feet long as adults, the snake can be kept in a relatively small enclosure such as a ten-gallon fish tank. Like most snakes, the Hognose is not demanding in care. They eat every 7 to 10 days, and need their enclosures spot cleaned daily with monthly substrate changes. Substrate can be any dry material from sand and alfalfa pellets to dry peat moss. The snake enjoys burrowing, so choose something that the animal can really dig into. Carefresh Pet Bedding, made from reclaimed wood-pulp waste, has been a favorite litter option of mine for years.
In the wild, Hognose snakes feed mostly on small frogs and toads, which they find by digging them up with their specially designed nose. The nose of these snakes it really a hard upper lip that curves to a point. This “nose” is made of keratin, the same material as human hair and fingernails. In captivity, most hatchlings are weaned onto mice before being sold to the public, so buying from a professional breeder or pet store can be best. Otherwise you will find yourself spending a lot money on frogs!
As a pet, Hognose are calm, docile snakes that take to handling easily. Like all animals, some individuals have shown testy behaviors. When these snakes are provoked they will flatten their necks and hiss like a cobra or even play dead! These bully examples are rare though. I have kept and bred Hognose for years and almost all of them were easily handled. Generally, the animal is suitable for any who wish to own a fabulous snake, and I would highly recommend inquiring about a Hognose for your next snake purchase.