Having a snake slither out of your couch while you're peacefully watching TV might sound like the plot to a horror movie, but it's a possibility if your pet snake escapes his tank, or you fail to keep watch over him while he's outside his enclosure. Snakes like warm, dark, safe places, and a couch qualifies on all accounts. Though your snake is unlikely to become permanently stuck inside the couch, and will probably eventually slither out on his own, snakes can stay quietly hidden for a long time, so be prepared to entice the snake out of his hiding spot.
Keep cats, dogs and small children out of the room to minimize noise and vibrations that could alarm the snake. Remain as quiet as possible while you hunt for your snake, and keep the room dim.
Remove all the loose couch cushions. Feel along the edges of the couch and behind any attached cushions. If your pet snake is curled up underneath the cushions, gently catch him and put him back in his enclosure.
Use a flashlight to look underneath the couch. Most couches have a layer of fabric protecting the springs and frame of the couch. If there is a hole in this fabric, even quite small, the snake could be inside the couch frame. If you see the snake, or suspect he is inside the couch frame, you will need to either cut a larger hole in the fabric so you can reach inside to grasp the snake, or attempt to lure him out of the couch.
Set a heating pad to its lowest temperature and lay it underneath or directly in front of the couch. The warmth might attract the snake to the pad, where he will be easy to catch.
Set a warm, thawed mouse on a small tray directly in front of the couch, then turn off most of the room's lights. Your snake might emerge from the couch on his own if he is hungry and smells food.
Surround the couch with crumpled plastic bags, turn off the lights, and sit quietly in the darkness with a flashlight. If the snake emerges from the couch, you will hear the crinkle of the bags as he slithers through them. Turn on your flashlight and catch your snake.
Ring the couch with a circle of flour if you are unsuccessful in catching the snake and cannot wait any longer. If the snake crawls across the flour while you are away, you will see track marks indicating which way he went.
Items you will need
- Scissors or knife (optional)
- Heating pad
- Thawed mouse
- Food tray
- Plastic bags
- Never yank or pull your snake. If he is coiled around springs or the couch frame, you could injure him by pulling too hard. Wait until the snake is relaxed or out of the couch fully before gently capturing him.
- If the snake is not a pet, and you do not know what species of snake it is, or there is any chance it could be a venomous snake, do not attempt to catch it. Call animal control to remove the snake.
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