Do Ball Pythons Make Noise? The Truth About Ball Python Vocalizations

Affiliate Disclaimer

As an affiliate, we may earn a commission from qualifying purchases. We get commissions for purchases made through links on this website from Amazon and other third parties.

Ball pythons are among the most popular pet snakes due to their docile nature and manageable size. However, many potential owners wonder if these snakes make noise and what those noises might mean.

In short, ball pythons make noise, but it is not a common occurrence and often indicates a specific behavior or health issue.

When it comes to the types of noises made by ball pythons, there are a few to be aware of.

The most common noise is hissing, a defensive behavior when the snake feels threatened.

Ball pythons may also make a clicking noise when exploring their environment or feeling stressed. Additionally, wheezing or coughing sounds may indicate a respiratory issue that requires veterinary attention.

If a ball python makes noise, it is essential to understand the reasons behind the behavior.


Key Takeaways


  • Ball pythons make noise, but it is not common and often indicates a specific behavior or health issue.
  • Ball pythons’ most common noises are hissing, clicking, and wheezing/coughing.
  • If a ball python is making noise, it is essential to understand the reason behind the behavior and consult a veterinarian if needed.

Do Ball Pythons Make Noise


Ball pythons are known for their docile nature and are a popular choice for pet snakes. One question that many potential owners ask is whether or not ball pythons make noise.

The short answer is no; ball pythons do not make noise in the traditional sense.

Unlike some other reptiles, ball pythons do not have vocal cords or the ability to make sounds.

They communicate primarily through body language and scent marking. However, this does not mean that ball pythons are completely silent creatures.

Ball pythons can make hissing sounds when they feel threatened or scared. This is a warning to potential predators to stay away.

Hissing is a common defensive behavior in many snake species and is a natural response to perceived danger.

It is important to note that hissing is not a sign of aggression in ball pythons. Many ball pythons will hiss as a first line of defense before resorting to biting.

If a ball python is hissing, it is best to give it space and allow it to calm down before attempting to handle it.

In summary, while ball pythons do not make noise in the traditional sense, they can hiss as a defensive behavior.

It is important for potential owners to understand this behavior and to approach their ball python with caution and respect.


Types of Noises Made by Ball Pythons


Ball pythons are known for being relatively quiet snakes, but they make some noises occasionally. Here are the three types of noises that ball pythons can make:


Hissing is the most common noise that ball pythons make. They make a defensive sound when they feel threatened or scared. Hissing warns potential predators that the snake is ready to defend itself. Ball pythons will hiss by forcefully exhaling air through their mouth, which creates a loud, hissing sound.


Another noise that ball pythons can make is a whistling sound. This sound is less common than hissing and is usually heard when the snake breathes heavily.

It is caused by air passing through the snake’s trachea and can be a sign of respiratory issues or stress. If you hear your ball python whistling, it’s best to have it checked out by a veterinarian.


Finally, ball pythons can make a clicking sound. This sound is produced by the snake’s jaw popping in and out of place as it swallows its prey.

It is a normal sound and nothing to be concerned about. However, if you hear clicking sounds when your ball python is not eating, it could be a sign of a dental issue or injury.

Overall, while ball pythons are not known for being noisy snakes, they make some sounds worth knowing about.

Understanding the different types of noises your ball python can make can help you better care for your pet and ensure it stays healthy and happy.


Reasons Behind the Noises

Defense Mechanism


Ball pythons are known to hiss when they feel threatened or scared. This hissing sound warns potential predators that the snake should not be messed with.

The hiss is made by the snake forcefully expelling air from its lungs through its mouth, creating a loud, hissing noise.

This is a common defense mechanism used by many species of snakes, and it is a sign that the snake is feeling threatened or uncomfortable.


Respiratory Issues


If a ball python is wheezing or clicking noises, it may indicate respiratory issues.

Respiratory infections are common in ball pythons and can be caused by various factors, including poor husbandry, stress, and exposure to cold temperatures.

If a ball python makes unusual noises when breathing, it is essential to seek veterinary care as soon as possible. Respiratory infections can be serious and even life-threatening if left untreated.


Feeding Time


When a ball python eats, it may make various noises, including hissing, grunting, and swallowing sounds.

This is perfectly normal behavior and a sign that the snake is enjoying its meal. Ball pythons are known for their voracious appetites, often making noise during feeding time as they eagerly consume their prey.

In conclusion, ball pythons can make various noises for different reasons. While some noises are normal and harmless, others may indicate respiratory or other health problems.

Monitoring your ball python’s behavior and seeking veterinary care if you notice any unusual noises or other signs of illness is essential.


When to Be Concerned


Ball pythons are generally quiet and do not make a lot of noise. However, in some situations, owners should be concerned and take action.


Respiratory Issues


If a ball python is wheezing or clicking noises while breathing, it may be a sign of respiratory issues. Various factors, including infections, parasites, or environmental factors, such as low humidity can cause this.

Owners should take their snake to a veterinarian specializing in reptiles for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan.


Aggressive Behavior


Ball pythons may hiss or strike when they feel threatened or scared, but it may be a sign of aggressive behavior if they consistently make loud hissing or growling noises.

Various factors, including stress, illness, or improper handling, can cause this. Owners should consult with a reptile behaviorist to address the underlying cause of the aggression and develop a plan to correct the behavior.


Shedding Issues


During shedding, ball pythons may make soft hissing or wheezing noises as they rub against objects to help remove their old skin. However, if a ball python makes loud, persistent noises during shedding, it may be a sign of a more serious issue, such as a retained shed.

Owners should monitor their snake closely during shedding and seek veterinary care if abnormalities occur.

If a ball python is making unusual or persistent noises, owners should consult with a veterinarian or reptile expert to determine the underlying cause and develop an appropriate treatment plan.


Consulting a Vet


If a ball python owner is concerned about their pet making unusual noises, they should consult a veterinarian specializing in reptiles. A vet can perform a physical examination to determine if any underlying health issues are causing the noise.

The vet may ask the owner about the snake’s diet, living conditions, and behavior during the examination. They may also listen to the snake’s breathing and examine its mouth for signs of infection or injury. The vet may order further diagnostic tests, such as blood work or X-rays, if necessary.

It’s important to note that not all noises made by ball pythons are cause for concern. Some snakes may hiss or exhale loudly when they feel threatened or stressed, while others may produce clicking or popping sounds when they move.

However, if the noise is accompanied by other symptoms, such as wheezing, coughing, or lethargy, it’s best to have the snake examined by a vet.

Consulting with a vet can provide valuable insight into a ball python’s health and well-being. By working with a qualified professional, owners can ensure that their pets receive the care they need to live long, healthy lives.




In conclusion, ball pythons are generally considered to be quiet pets. While they may hiss or make other noises when they feel threatened or scared, they are not known to regularly make loud or frequent noises.

It is important to note that individual ball pythons may have their unique personalities and behaviors, so some may be more vocal than others. However, this is not a common trait among the species.

Overall, a ball python may be a good choice if someone is looking for a quiet and low-maintenance pet. However, it is essential to research their care requirements and ensure they are adequately cared for to avoid potential health or behavioral issues.

About the author

Latest posts