Ball pythons are currently the third most commonly kept pet reptile in the world behind corn snakes and bearded dragons but their popularity constantly increases.
We see a wide range of questions about keeping ball pythons from the community with many people worrying about various problems with their pets and we have already answered a number of these in other articles.
One question that we have seen people asking more recently is about their ball pythons having wrinkled skin.
Due to wrinkled skin being a potentially serious issue with an otherwise healthy ball python, we wanted to publish this article to try and help as many of our readers as possible.
Ideally though, you really should be taking a wrinkled ball python to a vets to get professional advice on the situation as soon as possible as it really can be a serious problem and in some cases, it can be fatal.
Is It Normal For A Ball Python To Have Wrinkled Skin?
The short answer to this question is no, it really isn’t normal for a ball python to have wrinkled skin.
If your ball python has wrinkled skin then it is definitely a sign that something is wrong and you should take action as soon as possible.
Although there are some exceptions (which we will go into later), generally speaking, a ball python with wrinkled skin is not a healthy ball python.
What Causes Wrinkled Skin In Ball Pythons?
There are actually a number of different things that can cause wrinkled skin in ball pythons and it is important to try and identify the root cause so that you can take the necessary steps to fix it.
The most common causes of wrinkled skin in ball pythons are:
- Dirty enclosure
- Lack of humidity
- Incorrect shedding
If your ball python’s skin is looking wrinkled then the first thing that you should do is check the level of humidity in their enclosure.
If the humidity isn’t high enough then this can cause your ball python to shed incorrectly which can lead to their skin becoming wrinkled.
You should also check for any parasites or mites as these can also cause your ball python’s skin to become wrinkled.
If you are unsure about how to check for parasites or mites then we would recommend taking your ball python to a reptile vet who will be able to carry out the necessary tests.
The vast majority of people who are having problems with their ball python having wrinkled skin will usually find that it is due to their ball python having problems with dehydration.
How To Fix Wrinkled Skin On A Ball Python!
The best way to fix wrinkled skin on a ball python is to identify the root cause and then take the necessary steps to rectify it.
As we mentioned earlier, the most common cause of wrinkled skin is dehydration so if you think that this may be the problem then you should try and increase the level of humidity in their enclosure and make sure your ball python always has access to water.
You can do this by using a humidifier or by misting their enclosure with water on a regular basis.
It is also important to make sure that your ball python is shedding properly as this can also cause their skin to become wrinkled.
You can help with this by increasing the level of humidity in their enclosure and by gently massaging their skin with a damp cloth to help loosen any dead skin.
If you have tried all of the above and your ball python’s skin is still wrinkled then it is definitely time to take them to see a reptile vet.
They will be able to carry out some tests to try and identify the root cause of the problem and they will also be able to give you some professional advice on how to move forward.
You also have to realize that there is a high chance of a dehydrated ball python refusing to drink and needing to be assisted in drinking so you really do have to keep a close eye on your snake’s water intake.
If you do notice that your ball python is not drinking then you really should be heading to the veterinarian as soon as possible.
How Long Does It Take For Wrinkled Skin To Return To Normal?
This really depends on the root cause of the problem.
If your ball python is dehydrated then their skin should return to normal within about a week once they have rehydrated.
However, if your ball python has wrinkled skin due to an underlying health condition then it is unlikely that their skin will ever return to completely normal.
If the wrinkled skin is due to parasites, it can take around a month for their skin to return to normal.
How Can I Make Sure My Ball Python Doesn’t Get Wrinkled Skin In The Future?
The best way to prevent your ball python from getting wrinkled skin in the future is to make sure that they are always well hydrated and that their enclosure has the correct level of humidity.
You should also make sure that your ball python is shed properly and that you check them regularly for any parasites or mites.
If you do notice any changes in your ball python’s skin then you should take them to see a reptile vet as soon as possible.
Wrinkled skin on a ball python can be caused by a number of different things but the most common cause is dehydration.
Some vivarium setups can be prone to mite problems so regular cleaning of the vivarium can also be essential but this does tend to be rare.