So we're trying to get Ratbane up to size, in the hope that he can go down and be a good basement dragon. For that reason we've been feeding him baby mice from the pet store. These (I have recently learned) come in several sizes, from "pinkies" who don't yet have hair, to older mice named "fuzzies" and then "jumpers."
The wife got tired of riding all the way to the pet store, so instead of buying just one mouse to feed him live, she bought several and froze them to death. (I would feel bad about freezing baby mice to death, if it weren't for the merciless war I have raged on their kind for the last two years.) Today it came time to feed the snake one of the pre-killed mice, which is more of a problem than it sounds like it ought to be.
Naturally the wife had somewhere to be today, so on her way out the door she asked me to microwave a dead frozen mouse and see if I could get the snake to eat it. "He might not," she said, "because he's never encountered a dead mouse before. But give it a try."
Well, so I did. I warmed up the dead mouse, and dropped him into the tank by the snake. The snake ignored him entirely, and when I came back later the snake was still paying the mouse no mind at all.
"OK," I thought, "clearly I need to get the snake's attention."
So I went and got one of those bamboo skewers you use for making kabobs, and I skewered the mouse through its side. Then, I used the skewer to bring the mouse over to the snake, and slapped him across the face with it.
He didn't seem to like that, so I smacked him with the mouse several more times until he curled up into a little ball. Then I dropped the mouse on him, and went away.
After a while, I got to thinking to myself, "That probably wasn't very mouse-like behavior. Perhaps it would have been more effective if...."
Apparently I'm not very good at simulating a prey animal.
However, when I went to check, the snake was eating the mouse, so I guess it all worked out.