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Is My Water Dragon Sick?

Discussion in 'Water Dragons' started by Zanoske, Dec 31, 2009.

  1. Zanoske

    Zanoske New Member

    Hi everyone, my not even a yr old water dragon has been acting a little funny lately and was hoping for help. We got him back in June and he was about 3-4 months then. We don't handle him too often, maybe once or twice every few days and even then we only hold him inside his tank to get him used to us touching him. He doesn't fight against us and usually just sits in our palm =)

    He usually wakes up around 8-9am on top of his tree and basks for several hours and then spends the rest of his day swimming/bathing, basking, and trying to escape the tank. I try to feed him daily(there have been scarce occasions where we didn't feed him an entire day =/ I don't know if thats very bad or not), usually between 8-12 crickets. On occasion hes eaten carrot baby food and once or twice lettuce(he didn't like it very much). He never has a problem eating and eagerly awaits the cricket tube(usually jumps for it).

    Everything seems normal but lately hes been waking up more around noon and we've been finding him hidden under our artificial plants. He still carries out the rest of his day normally but his new sleeping pattern has us worried.

    I initally suspected its because I live in NJ and its winter, probably a little colder in his tank despite us having our heating on. So for the last few nights we've left his heat lamp on(a lower setting, keeping it around 80) while he sleeps. It doesn't seem to be helping. Despite the extra heat during the night hes still sleeping under the brush...

    His poo is usually just short of an inch long and greyish/black in color on cricket diet, sometimes there is white in it but its usually more runny when that happens. When we feed him baby food it comes out orange. I dust the crickets one and awhile with Zoomeds Reptivite.

    Should I be worried?


    Tank info*

    Usually humidity(desert while unsprayed, high moderate-mid tropical sprayed). We try to spray his tank atleast 2-3 times a day.

    Tempature day(basking side)-between 88-95degrees
    Tempature night - 80degrees


    Tempature day(cooler side)-80degrees
    Tempature night-70degrees(this is the side hes been sleeping on under the brush)

    20gallon long tank, switching him into a 70gallon long in about 3 months.

    Heat lamp bulb - 100W and it looks like it says 20V

    UV bulb - Reptiglow 5.0 15W


    *Pictures*
    I couldn't upload my pictures due to file size but here is a link to some pictures of him.
    Godzilla pictures by Zanoske - Photobucket

    Looking forward to hearing from you all =)
     
  2. schlegelbagel

    schlegelbagel Frog Lover Premium Member

    Your tank is already way too small. A 70 gallon is too small for a permanant adult home. They need roughly 300 gallons of space. Most people build their enclosure.

    What type of lighting do you have?

    And yes, they do need to eat every day. You can try adding some greens into his diet. Mustard and collard greens are good, lettuce is nutritionally void. Also, are you gutloading your crickets for 24 hours before feeding? If so with what? And are you supplementing with vitamins and/or calcium powder?
     
  3. Zanoske

    Zanoske New Member

    I do gutload. I use Zilla brand products for cricket drink and feed. I added info on the lighting already and know the tank is way too small. I don't know if we can fit a 300gallon anywhere in our apartment... do you have another suggestion for size? I think the biggest we could handle in here is a 90... maybe we could build up instead of longways? I don't know that would suit him. If thats the case we could handle a 180gallon(90gallon tank and 90gallon size added top enclosure).
     
  4. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Height is actually what they need. They are an arboreal species that likes to climb. Your 70 gallon will work if you build an enclosed box on top of it to extend the size.
    Those dial guages are trash. They are horribly innacurate. Get you a good digital at the hardware store. Lowes, Home Depot, etc.
    Leaving the heat lamp on at night, if its the one in the pictures that puts out white light, is a bad idea. It will disrupt the sleep cycle. Was the dragon behaving this way before you were running the light at night?
     
  5. schlegelbagel

    schlegelbagel Frog Lover Premium Member

    A home made enclosure may be your best bet. Use the footprint of the space you have and build up. They love the height and will use all of it. Think of a tall wood box with a plexi front. You could also convert an old dresser or something.
     
  6. murrindindi

    murrindindi Elite Member

    I think the temp on the cool side at night is too cool, raise it to around 75f, he is cold when he wakes in the morning, so it takes longer to heat up, yes, you can build the tank upwards, they are semi arborial lizards, I`m not sure how you get any proper temp range in a tank that small, you need to build bigger asap.... (Sorry, we all seem to be responding at the same time)!
     
  7. shwknight

    shwknight Elite Member

    He looks REALLY small. You say he's almost 1 year old but he looks like he's only a few months old. I got my CWD in febuary of 2009 and when I got him he looked the same size as yours does now. Buddy (my CWD's name ;)) is now 7 inches from snout to vent. My concern is that he looks kind of under weight and dehydrated. Personally I would take him to a certified herp vet and have him checked out.
    I say this because you state that his poo only sometimes has the white (urates), and in my experiance there is always the urates (white) and if it isn't there then there isn't enough hydration in his body to produce the urate.
    As for feeding, I would try to make sure he gets fed everyday just because of his size. I usually feed everyday with the occational (maybe once a week) of no food. With a healthy CWD a day or 2 a week of no food won't hurt them, but like I said yours looks small so I'd feed everyday.
    I'm going to go with Murrindindi on the temps. It shouldn't get below 75 at night. I run my enclosure at around 80 at night (will drop to 78 on occasion depending on the room temp) I have a CHE set for 80 so when my Megaray light (for UVB/heat during the day) goes off and the temp drops the CHE comes on to keep the enclosure at 80.
    Humidity should be between 60-80 at all times. Try covering the top with tin foil everywhere the lights aren't, that should help keep the humidity up.
    I also agree with Merlin, ditch the dial guages and get digital. You can pick up combo therm/hygro meters at wal-mart, home depot, really anywhere that has a garden section for cheap. I have the ones with a remote probe and they cost me $25 a piece.
    And just so you have a comparison of a CWD of similar age I'll post a picture of Buddy ;)
     

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  8. DragonGirl9130

    DragonGirl9130 Active Member

    talking through experiance, I used to leave Draco's (my water dragon) light on at night for keeping the heat and he pulled the same stunt, sleeping in until a little past noon, finding dark places to hide and then sleep. my advice- shut off the light at night (that put Draco's sleeping pattern back on track) instead get an infer-red light for at night it will give the heat plus let your Water Dragon sleep. (Infer-reds are much cheeper if you avoid getting them at pet stores... we used infer-reds for our baby pigs and it was only $3 to $6 a bulb, I'm sure You can find something)... Good luck:)
    .
    If he's dehydrated he wont eat much- just enough to stay alive. Does he drink often and if not is there something in the water he's not liking... chorine maybe??? Do you have city water??
     
  9. Wildflowernw

    Wildflowernw Elite Member

    Looks underweight to me too. I got mine about the same time that Steve got Buddie. He's not as big but plenty heavy looking and I know he's not eating as much as he should. Always asleep, hiding in his forest by the time I get home from work.

    My guy is in the habit of getting up when I do and thats before his lights are on or any other ones. I come out of the bedroom and he's just starting to move around. I always change his water first thing and its nice and warm. Then I'll leave the room and come back and he's in his bath. When he gets out and before I leave for work I hand feed him some roaches. Usually only 2 and he does the "I'm ignoring you" routine.. he closes both eyes.

    They do like to be up high. Mine is is a 55 up high on top of a 4 ft tall book case and he loves to look down at the cat and dog. I recently acquired a 90 and need to get him into it asap. Darn things just keep growing.

    How big was he when you got him? And have you made any changes in his home. I know mine hates change and will hide for awhile after I even move around his furnature.

    Good luck with him. Other than being thin he looks pleanty bright.
     
  10. Zanoske

    Zanoske New Member

    First I'd like to say thank you for all your responses, they were all very helpful.

    Now to answer your questions:

    Those dial guages are trash. They are horribly innacurate. Get you a good digital at the hardware store. Lowes, Home Depot, etc.
    ~We're getting on that next week.

    Leaving the heat lamp on at night, if its the one in the pictures that puts out white light, is a bad idea. It will disrupt the sleep cycle.
    ~Understandable. We're getting him a black heat lamp for night time =)

    Was the dragon behaving this way before you were running the light at night?
    ~No, we began to keep the light on dimmer after he moved into the plants. I think I've discovered the cause though. I don't think its so much a tempature difference anymore as much as a lighting problem. We'll be getting a timer when we get our new digital thermometer =)

    They are an arboreal species that likes to climb. Your 70 gallon will work if you build an enclosed box on top of it to extend the size.
    ~We actually found an affordable 90gallon long and plan on adding a top to it as well

    you need to build bigger asap....
    ~Getting on that early next week! We moved it way up due to the group agreement he needed more room

    my advice- shut off the light at night (that put Draco's sleeping pattern back on track) instead get an infer-red light for at night it will give the heat plus let your Water Dragon sleep.
    ~done and done

    He looks REALLY small. You say he's almost 1 year old but he looks like he's only a few months old.
    ~I don't have an exact age... when we got him he was even smaller =/ Hes gotten alittle bigger. If I had to guess he was 2-3months when we got him and that was back in June so he'd be 8-9 months old. My best bet.

    If he's dehydrated he wont eat much- just enough to stay alive. Does he drink often and if not is there something in the water he's not liking... chorine maybe??? Do you have city water??
    ~He eats nonstop! Infact I don't know if its a problem o.o I only feed him about 10-12 smallish-mediumish crickets a day but I know if I put 10 more than that in he'd eat them too! Should I feed him more? About the water I know its ok for him. Our water system in our county is fairly good and I always add reptisafe to clear out chlorine and stuff like that in any water that goes in the tank.

    How big was he when you got him? And have you made any changes in his home. I know mine hates change and will hide for awhile after I even move around his furnature.
    ~About the same size. His tail has grown a whole lot and he's put some meat on his arms and legs but his body and head haven't grown too much. Then again its only been 6 months. We've changed his setup once or twice, to increase his climbing and running space. Neither time did he act funny afterward.

    I'll post new pics of Godzilla and link them to here in the next few days. Thanks again everyone!
     
  11. shwknight

    shwknight Elite Member

    Feed him as much as he will eat in about 5-10 minutes.

    Have you had a fecal float done on him yet to check for parasites?? If not you need to have one done ASAP.

    When I first got Buddy he grew very fast (his whole body) he should be growing everywhere. Even at 8-9 monthes old he should be a lot bigger.

    I personally don't like to use any light at night since they aren't usually active. In my opinion CHE's are the best way to go. They cost a little more than lights but they also last a great deal longer than lights.
     
  12. Wildflowernw

    Wildflowernw Elite Member

    I agree with Steve on the ceramics. I switched over everything I have here to those once I was told that any light can disrupt sleep patterns. Plus they don't burn out all the time like the lights do.

    I was thinking getting a fecal wouldn't hurt either. I screwed up horribly by not getting it done on a Panther Cham, she started loosing weight and ended up going blind from parasites. Thats a tragedy that could have been prevented.

    I also want you to understand that we're not trying to come down too hard either. We've all been there, had problems, learned, moved on. I joined this group because I needed to get answers and at times felt folks came down hard.

    Looking back, I now know it was out of genuine concern.
     

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