Among so many extreme pets, garter snake is many people’s favorite. Garter snake or garden snake can be found around North America. Just like the other snakes, garter snake is carnivorous. Garter snake loves to eat live preys. Are you going to pet a garter snake? Then you must learn about what do garter snakes eat so you’ll keep it happy to stay in your garden.
Garter snake is immune to toads’ toxic skin, that’s why garter snake can easily eat toads with no harm. Do you really have to feed garter snake only with live prey? Can you give them the other foods and keep them happy at once?
What Do Garter Snakes Eat
Whole foods for garter snakes
No need to chop and shred and cook the foods for your garter snakes. Garter snakes love swallowing the foods whole. This is how they get power for long time without eating anything else. So place the foods while they’re still alive and let your garter snake eats it in instance. Feed your garter snake in warmer temperatures like early in the morning, late evening, and mid-afternoon.
Foods for garter snakes living on land
Garter snakes that are used to live in terrestrial areas would love to eat animals such as lizards, rodents, birds, mice, earthworms, snails, and slugs. You cannot feed them with cats or dogs since these animals are too big for garter snake. If you don’t want to lose your small rodents, do not place them in outdoor cages since garter snake can make them disappear.
Foods for garter snakes living near the water
Garter snakes living near the water eat totally different foods from garter snakes living on the land. These garter snakes living near the waters would love to eat fish, tadpoles, and leeches. If you’re going to pet garter snake that is used to live near the waters, consider toads, salamanders, and frogs. Toads’ skin will not be toxic for your garter snake.
Petting garter snakes with proper foods
Your pet garter snake should not eat wildlife animals you catch. However, you can feed your pet garter snake with earthworms. Just make sure you don’t harvest the earthworms from areas contaminated with herbicides and pesticides. Or you can buy worms from the bait shop or pet shop if you really want to get healthy worms that are not contaminated with chemicals.
Fishes for garter snakes
Best food loved by your pet garter snake is fish. Feed your garter snake with whole live fish instead of filleted fish or frozen fish. You also need to balance pet garter snake’s diet by providing supplement. And the best supplement for pet garter snake is leeches and slugs. Give slugs if your garter snake comes from land area but give leeches if they come from area near the water.
Additional supplements for garter snakes
Though your garter snake gets natural supplement from slugs or leeches, they may need mineral and vitamin supplements. Give the supplements one or twice in one month. Combine some powdered supplements like calcium, vitamin D3, and vitamin B1. Go get these supplements from health food shops and pet shops.
Commercial foods for garter snakes
If you don’t like the live animals, there are commercial foods designed for garter snakes available in many pet shops. Those commercial foods are not wrong option but they can be expensive. Besides, those commercial foods are not so special compared to natural living animals. Even though you can feed your garter snake with commercial foods, they’re not really recommended.
Feeding Garter Snake Pet Correctly
There are many ways you can do to feed your garter snakes. First one is feeding your garter snakes directly by dropping the prey into the cage of your garter snake. Make sure you always place the food on wood chips or paper towel so your garter snake pet will always remember where he can find the food.
When placing the food in the cage bedding, you need to make sure that the food will not stick in the bedding. If wood chips are the bedding of your garter snake pet, do not drop the earthworms since your garter snake may eat not only the earthworms but also the wood chips. This is dangerous since snakes cannot digest plant fiber properly.
If you are going to feed your pet garter snake with filleted fish, whole fish, and worms you should place the foods in a safe place. Use small dish or plate so your garter snake pet can eat them easily. Frozen fishes either filleted or whole should be served thawed instead of cooked.
So that’s all you need to know about what do garter snakes eat and the right way to feed your garter snake pet. Make sure you feed them with the right foods placed in the right dish or bedding.