Do Ball Pythons Like to Swim? (REAL Facts)

If you are looking for a pet to bring home and care for with minimum maintenance and attention, then the ball python is the right choice for you. But there are still some things that you need to be aware of before getting one for yourself. Among several inquiries new owners have, the one I am going to focus on in this article is, do ball pythons like to swim?

Most of the ball pythons love to swim but there is still a possibility your one might not as it completely depends on the personality of your ball python. But it is very common to see ball pythons soaking themselves in the water bowl they are provided with in captivity.

I recommend you go through this entire article as I am going to provide you with every detail regarding the swimming tendencies of ball pythons. So, let’s begin.

Do Ball Pythons Like to Swim

Do Ball Pythons Enjoy Swimming?

Whether your ball python would like to swim or not, completely depends upon his or her personality as mentioned before. Some owners state that their ball pythons freak out while swimming, whereas others say theirs enjoy it.

But to know if your ball python is enjoying his swim or if he is struggling is by observing his reaction while he is underwater. Otherwise, there’s no other way to know if swimming is enjoyable to him or not. Look for the signs of struggle, suffocation, stress, to understand how your ball python is dealing with the situation.

Some factors contribute to this issue. For example, ball pythons are very specific about the temperature they want their environment to be. So, if the water you are providing him with is not 100-104 degrees Fahrenheit then you python might not like the water. 

If the water is at the proper temperature, it will not only comfort your ball python but also will help him with his metabolism and there’s a chance he will defecate in it. Therefore, the water must be cleaned frequently for your ball python to enjoy his swim or even to soak.

So, as all ball pythons don’t enjoy swimming, to know if your one does, you’ll need to put it in water to find out. If your python doesn’t like it even if the water is at a proper temperature then it will be pretty obvious as he or she will try to get out.

Is It Okay to Leave Your Ball Python Alone While Swimming?

do ball pythons like to swim

Leaving your ball python alone while he swims in a pool or tub or a relatively large body of water is a dangerous thing to do and there’s a possibility your python may drown. It is important to keep constant supervision during this time. Because there’s a chance your ball python may not be enjoying his swim and may also be struggling to keep his head up.

Therefore, make sure you are always present during your ball python’s swim session. Also keep on observing the python’s behavior to understand whether he or she is enjoying it or getting stressed. Because the rule of thumb is to not force your ball python to do anything he doesn’t want to as it affects their health deeply.

Why Your Ball Python Might Be Spending Too Much Time in the Water

Ball pythons don’t usually like spending too much time in the water as they are not built for swimming. But if you see your ball python swimming or soaking too frequently then that could be due to the following reasons –


If you have done any research about ball pythons then you already know how important maintaining the right humidity and temperature is for them. Improper maintenance in these two cases can affect a ball python’s health greatly.

But if your ball python is spending too much time in the water then one of the reasons behind this is that you are not being able to provide him with the right temperature & humidity.

Therefore, due to the cage being too dry or hot for them, to moisturize and cool off they spend more time in the water swimming or soaking.

Shedding Season

Ball pythons tend to spend more time in water swimming or soaking during their shedding time. Because water helps them shed more quickly. So, it is very natural for them to swim or soak more during this period. However, if you don’t see him shed within a few days then the other two reasons should be considered.

Mite Invasion

Ball pythons are also likely to spend more time in the water if they are being feasted on by mites. So, make sure to call a specialist to get rid of this mite invasion.


So, do ball pythons like to swim?  For the case of most ball pythons, yes. Occasional swimming or soaking not only helps them stay hydrated but it also has some health benefits as well. But that doesn’t mean yours will like it too. So, be careful and don’t force your ball python unless there is a medical need for it.

I hope this article was able to educate you about the swimming tendencies of ball pythons. Thanks for stopping by.