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Possible Chameleon Health issue

Discussion in 'Herp Health' started by LoRno, Mar 5, 2006.

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  1. LoRno

    LoRno Active Member

    Hey there everybody! It's been a heck of a long time since I've been here and man have things changed lol. I don't dwindle in the reptile department, I'm more of the Tarantula kinda guy, but my friend owns a Veiled(Hope that's spelled right) Chameleon in which he's owned for...probably close to if not more then a year. However, I dunno if it's in good health, neither is my friend, so I told him I would ask some people that would know about this kinda thing to see if there's something he's not doing right. His current symptoms(If they are symptoms) is that Thorn (The Chameleon) has a section of missing spikes on the back of his spine right in the middle of his body pretty much. The other thing is that his ... Cask? Casque? The head part... lol... has a white spot on the top of it, and my friend mentioned something of it not growing much or something. The Chameleon is a male I'm pretty sure and his head is grey whereas his body is kinda more colored. I unfortunatly don't have a picture, but hopefully the description is good enough for someone to notice any problems if there is problems at all. Thanks....and enjoy your weekend :)
  2. Brittone05

    Brittone05 Elite Member


    To check the sex of the chameleon, look on it's back feet - if there is a little nub sticking out the back (tarsal spur) then it is a male!

    The section of missing spines off it's back could be due to it being nibbled by it's food items - does your friend remove any uneaten crix before lights out?? This can be a problem, more so I have found with black crix and I can say that hinestly as my chameleon has exactly the same from before he came to me.

    Regarding his casque (you were right lol), the 'white spot' cold be one of many things - retained shed (also a factor of you saying the head was grey - this is how my George goes when he is due a shed), skin infection - without seeing a pic, it is difficult to tell. The growth side of things usually points to poor husbandry where calcium, UVb and supplements are concerned and I would keep a close check for MBD. Are it's limbs straight?? I mean, when it stands, are it's legs bowed or do the bones look rubbery at all??

    Also, can youfind out all the other husbandry related things for me? Temps, humidity, how often he mists, drip systame in place?, feeding, dusting, UVB source?, cage size/material. I know it's a lot but all of these things can help. I am not a vet by no means but have extensively researched chams and my George has done a full 360 health wise since he came to me so I must be doing something right lmao

    The best thing I can suggest is to see a vet as soon as possible. The crix and spines thing is something that is mostly avoidable but can happen - the MBD/lack of calcium thing is something that is wholly avoidable and I think your friend should seek professional advice for his cham.

    good luck and let us know how he gets on :)
  3. Bitis Gabonica

    Bitis Gabonica Elite Member

    Welcome back, it's been a while!

    First of all, as Brittone said, some more info - environment conditions, UVB, diet, etc - would be helpful, and could you tell us how old the cham is?

    The white spot on the head sounds normal to me - it may just be part of his colouring. Also the heads are usually duller than the bodies, and as Brittone said, it could also be sign of a shed.

    The missing spikes sound a bit worrying though - perhaps caused by some kind of injury, how long have they been missing?

    Is he eating normally/going to the toilet? Our cham is just over a year old now and his growth and appetite have slowed considerabley, so don't be too concerned about his growth slowing, depending on his age.

    A vet visit wouldn't do any harm and may be best to be on the safe side. It's always best to be 100% sure, and your vet can do a check-up and faecal exam to ensure that everything is ok healthwise.
  4. LoRno

    LoRno Active Member

    Hey now there's a familiar name around here lol. Thanks for the feedback. Now for some feedback on my end of what I can remember. I'll find out more tomorrow I know that much. He feeds his Chameleon Crickets in which he powders them in two different powders at seperate times. One's a calcium one and the other might be a vitamin one or something. Occasionally he also feeds him Super worms that are also powdered. He has a waterfall in his tank, but he does mist occasionally. Temp and Humidity ...umm...Temp is 80 I think, but I don't recall Humidity. I don't know how long they have been missing, I thought they just didn't grow correctly. He's got bulbs...a Day time heating one, some kinda UV one, and some night time heating one. He eats pretty much everytime I come over, sometimes I get to feed him and it's uber cool lol, but as far as schedule goes I'm pretty sure he gets fed everyday. They're like My spiders are melee fighters, which reminds me I gotta feed them. His terrarium is pretty huge. He made it out of his closet. I don't know the exact dimensions at all, but it's very tall for him to climb and LOTS of room to wander. I dunno how old he is...and yea..that's about it :). OH! You two mentioned a vet...any vet? Like the same vet I take my cats too?
  5. Hide Clyde

    Hide Clyde Elite Member

    Nope, an exotic vet, that deals in herps. A regular vet is most likely not going to know how to treat a Chameleon. The waterfall is a big no no for chams. Waterfalls if not cleaned and sterilized almost daily will be a breeding ground for germs and bacteria. If the UVB light is much older than 6 months then it needs to be replaced. I don't know the temps and humidity for veilds so some of the others will have to comment on that part. What about plants? They like lots of cover.
  6. Brittone05

    Brittone05 Elite Member

    I agree with Hyde on the waterfall issue.

    Unless your firend can sterilise and clean the water every day he is inviting bacteria to be spread around the viv without even knowing it is there. Waterfalls look great and all but finding the right setting for them isn't easy (I have had a brand new one sat in my reptile room for 9 months now and I still haven't found a use for it lmao)

    The night time bulb, if it is a light emitting one, should be ditched and replaced wiht a non light emitting heat source for night times but provided his night time heat doesn't fall below a minimum of 65 then he should be good. You say the temps are 80's - is that a basking temp or an ambient temp?? Could really use knowing to say if ita factor or not :)

    Also, misting his cham is really an essential part of it's husbandry,IMO. George has a drip system in place but is still isted 3 times daily for a minimum of 5 mins per time and he even ocmes u and suckles on the spray bottle nozzle lmao

    Try if you can to get specific details form your friend about the way he keeps his cham. Also, the vets should really be a specific herp vet who has some knowledge of chameleons and not just an ordinary cat and dog vet.

    good luck :)
  7. LoRno

    LoRno Active Member

    Thanks for all the help so far! I still don't know his Humidity, but I'm gonna ask what a recommended humdiity level would be from all of you out there. His Temp would probably be an Ambient 80 as his Thermometer isn't right at the lightbulb. I don't know what his basking would be, higher then 80 obviously lol.

    He, nor I, for that matter knew about the waterfall issue, but it makes sense. I guess he got suckered by some pet shop emplyee as it sounded like a good idea to him and I(I was with him when he picked it up, it's one of those Exo Terra ones).

    I'm curious to know about this light bulb issue. It's a light emitting(It's like blue), but it does say that it's a "Nighttime" bulb for varous Reptiles. I'm just wondering why that would be a bad thing?

    And finally, I didn't think the Vet I take my cats to would also know about Chameleons :D
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