Bathing a Ball Python

Ball Python 2

Ball Pythons in the wild love to live near a water source so that they can soak cool off. We are not able to recreate that exact environment, so it is highly recommended to keep a bowl of water in the vivarium so they can soak whenever they want.

Why should I give my Ball Python a bath?

The main reason why we should give our Ball Pythons a bath every once in a while is to remove dirt from them. Apart from that, it is because, during the shedding period, they need gentle assistance since the skin does not shed off on its own. A warm bath will soften their skin and will aid in shedding them naturally.

A warm bath for your Ball Python will lessen constipation and kill mites.  Never push them back to the vivarium when they are taking a bath or soaking.

How often you should bathe Ball Python?

There is no need to bathe them often. Only during the shedding or when there is a full mess with their dirt you can bathe them.

How to bathe your Ball Python

Warm water is needed! Ball Pythons are cold-blooded animals, so you shouldn’t use cold water. If you bathe your Ball python in cold water, then it will lead to deadly infection for your pets.

The temperature of the water should be between 80 oF to 85 oF. You have to always use clean, filtered, or spring water. Turn off the air conditioners and close any windows if they are open. You have to use a large tub, the size of it should be large enough for your Ball Python to stretch out.

Don’t leave your Ball Python when they are bathing or soaking. You have to gently place the ball python in the tub and you allow them to bathe or soak for a maximum of 15 minutes. Don’t handle them when they are in the bath, but let them freely play in the water. After the bath, use a soft towel to dry them off.

Non Venomous Ball Python

Is Soaking necessary?

Yes, soaking is necessary for your Ball Pythons to cool their body temperature and remove dirt and bad odor. Again, it is always recommended to keep a small tray with water for them to drink and soak in their vivarium.

You have to change the water twice a day to be on the safer side because the water may then contain your pet’s excrements and may spread any bacterial infection back to them eventually.

Can you use soap?

Don’t use soap to bath your Ball Pythons because it may irritate their skin. You can use a diluted soap or some reptile washing gel but I won’t recommend using soap at all.

What happens when you don’t give them a bath/soak

Bathing is necessary for your pet Ball python to be healthy and to be hygienic. Everyone loves Ball pythons for their skin patterns. If their skin is covered with dirt, then they won’t look good, and eventually, they may get infected.

Soaking is for your ball python’s happiness and to cool down their body temperature. They will drink the water which they have soaked in. Don’t try to pull them back to the vivarium when they are enjoying their time by soaking.

Ball Python 2


Ball pythons can swim but they don’t like doing it often. They only ever do when in an emergency situation, to drink, or to cool their body temperature. Swimming is also found to reduce their stress levels.

Can they drown?

Although they can swim, Ball pythons can drown. When the size of the tub is larger for the baby Ball Python, for example, they would not know to get out of the tub and may drown.

Can they hold their breath underwater?

Ball Pythons, however, can hold their breath underwater. Some types of Ball Pythons can hold their breath from 10 minutes to 2 hours. They too have lungs and a windpipe like us but their nostrils can open and close which stops the water from passing through and reaching their lungs.

Final Thoughts

A bath for your pet Ball Python will avoid the spread of any skin and bacterial infections. You have to be very careful when you are giving them a bath. You should handle them with care and shouldn’t rub them harshly.