2 Vets can’t help me and My Cham won’t eat or open eyes

hilizanne

Member
I have a long story. I will try to make a timeline:

January 2016–purchased Seymour from Petco (yes I know you all don’t like Petco but there was a very good reptile dept manager here and animals have been very healthy for me)

Jan2016–July 2018—healthy and active

February 2018–adopted a 2nd male panther. Lives in different enclosure 3 feet away from Seymour. He is healthy. Seymour doesn’t act threatened by him unless I bring him too close.

July2018–fluid noted in chest area between front 2 legs. Reviewed my supplements and noticed I was accidentally giving vitamin D with calcium. Stopped all supplements at that time as I was advised by the vet. Took to vet weight was 218 grams. Still active and eating and drinking normally.

June 2019–Seymour started holding his right eye closed and rolling it around in the socket. He also was scratching his eye on my hand and on branches. He started sleeping more and eating less. Took to vet #1. Weight was 220 grams. She prescribed antibiotic eye ointment. Did not want to address possible vitamin A deficiency which I was now worried about because I had been reading and realized I had not given him regular herptivite since June 2018. Probably once or twice a month. A few days after returning from the vet I found a dysfunction in the Mist-king. It was not spraying at all for about a week. He was drinking from my hand spraying of plants but I am sure humidity was very low. We gave the eye ointment for 2 weeks.
He started to hold both eyes closed by the end of June. Hardly moving around in the cage. Only would eat if we put him in the bottom of the cage because he would open his eyes there. This goes into July.

Now—almost never will open eyes. Drinks from syringe. Won’t open eyes to eat. Moves around cage very little. Bones and balance seem normal. Vet #2 3 days ago—Seymour has lost 10 grams in the last month. Now 208 grams. Vet sends me away because she doesn’t treat reptiles. Going back on Thursday to see her partner who may know more. Nearest reptile vet is a 4 hour drive.

He is dying. I realize I probably have and am making some mistakes. I am trying to read and I have just joined this site today so I am behind on my reading, but I am working and I have other pets.

I need any advice on things I can correct now and anything I can request from the vet on Thursday.

Chameleon Info:
  • Your Chameleon - male Nosy be Panther chameleon, approx 4 years old, in my care 3.5 years
  • Handling -once a week. He is very calm.
  • Feeding - 8 superworms, 12 crickets, 5 hornworms, dubia roaches when he will take them. Every 2-3 days. Crickets and dubia are fed organic chick starter, potatoes, carrots, mustard greens. Worms oats and carrots.
  • Supplements - Currently Repashy calcium plus with 2 out of 3 feedings. This is new since January. Zoo med repti calcium without d every 3rd feed. (But now he’s not eating)
  • Watering - Mistking every 2 hours for 30 seconds during the day. Usually I see him drink but now only with a dropper.
  • Fecal Description - 2/3 brown/firm and 1/3 white. No change before he stopped eating.
  • History - he has been completely well until the past 6 weeks.

Cage Info:
  • Cage Type - Screen with one panel of Coroplast on the back to shield the wall. 18 inches deep, 36 inches long by 36 inches tall. I joined 2 Zoomed 18x18x36 screened cages together. Yes I know it’s not tall enough for him. I have a 4 foot tall cage for him but it won’t fit anywhere. I put him outside if the weather permits in that cage. Under a tree with filtered sun and spray with water first. We are on well water so no chemicals. He has been in his inside cage for 3
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    years. Before that he was in a single 18x18x36.
  • Lighting - One heat lamp currently with 60 watt bulb and one Zoo Med Reptisun 5.0 24 inch bulb. Lights are on 12 hours a day 9a-9p.bulb replaced in January.
  • Temperature - 90-95 just under the basking spot. 85 about 6 inches under. 70-75 on the bottom of the cage. I have this little wand pointer I use to measure.
  • Humidity - I am not getting good measurements. Every time I check it says 49-52%, even when the plant Leaves are wet. There is a little water left on the bottom of the cage with each misting. It evaporates by the next misting.
  • Plants - 2 pothos/ivy in coco husk dirt.
  • Placement - In the old now enclosed sun room. Its a regular room but it has more windows. His cage is on a rack and the bottom is 3 feet from the floor.
  • Location - Amarillo, TX (Texas Panhandle—very dry)
 

Mawtyplant

Chameleon Enthusiast
Hi,
1)your chameleon is obese maybe he have disease from it (like human.. excess of fat reducing lifespan) so stop any feeding fo the moment (ie: no force feeding)
2)what your temperatures look like lately? got air conditioner? here it was crazy hell hot and insolation or infection is a probability
3)any signs of anything like mouth gasping, excess of mucous any strange behavior since past 5 month (anything event if you think its not relevant
4)try to give him some natural sunlight (first sunray in the morning, and if possible a night drop (I sometime house my chameleon outside natural night drop (19 degree Celsius by example) from the outside nighttime only offer me some clear benefit
5) im sorry to tell you that, at this point from overfeeding nd oversuplementation organ failure can also be a possibility.. not sure if there a "coming back" possible

And of course you need more foliage but at this point its useless, if he survives or if you have another please add more foliage (keep humidity, provide drinking spots)
 

hilizanne

Member
Hi,
1)your chameleon is obese maybe he have disease from it (like human.. excess of fat reducing lifespan) so stop any feeding fo the moment (ie: no force feeding)
2)what your temperatures look like lately? got air conditioner? here it was crazy hell hot and insolation or infection is a probability
3)any signs of anything like mouth gasping, excess of mucous any strange behavior since past 5 month (anything event if you think its not relevant
4)try to give him some natural sunlight (first sunray in the morning, and if possible a night drop (I sometime house my chameleon outside natural night drop (19 degree Celsius by example) from the outside nighttime only offer me some clear benefit
5) im sorry to tell you that, at this point from overfeeding nd oversuplementation organ failure can also be a possibility.. not sure if there a "coming back" possible

And of course you need more foliage but at this point its useless, if he survives or if you have another please add more foliage (keep humidity, provide drinking spots)
1)I haven’t force fed him. I don’t know how anyway. I have never done that.
I always have put his food in his cage and let him eat on his own. He free roam eats or whatever you call it. If he didn’t finish his feed from 2-3 days prior then I would not give him more.
2)it has only been very hot the last week here. Hot enough that the room was 80. I turned off the basking lamps in the room to help. We do have air conditioning in the room.
3)Never anything that looked like difficulty breathing or mouth gasping at all. No swelling around the mouth.
4) I have been doing the sunlight thing except this week when it was over 100. Now it’s 68 degrees and I can put him outside again.
5)which supplement have I overdone? Other than the vitamin d that I stopped a year ago?

Could I wrap his cage more to help with humidity? He has always had no trouble shedding. I put another monitor in there closer to his plants and it says 65%. I read so much before I got him about air flow and fungal infections that it scared me.

I do have another one. He has a slightly larger plant and he is in the same room. I feed him the same way. His weight is 132 g. (He had been neglected when I got him and was only 30g and 10 months old.) He is fine. I will make sure his supplements are correct. The information is so contradictory. I am sure a thread on here or care sheet will have better info.


Thank you
 

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hilizanne

Member
[="Mawtyplant, post: 1501655, member: 42095"]
3)any signs of anything like mouth gasping, excess of mucous any strange behavior since past 5 month (anything event if you think its not relevant
[/QUOTE]

No other abnormal behavior or mucus production either. I mentioned everything abnormal or different that I could think of in my first lengthy post. He never had eye discharge either.
 

Mawtyplant

Chameleon Enthusiast
1)I haven’t force fed him. I don’t know how anyway. I have never done that.
I always have put his food in his cage and let him eat on his own. He free roam eats or whatever you call it. If he didn’t finish his feed from 2-3 days prior then I would not give him more.

Good, (because sometime people advices to force-feed so I want you to remember about this :p he got enough fat storage and don't need to eat for now,

2)it has only been very hot the last week here. Hot enough that the room was 80. I turned off the basking lamps in the room to help. We do have air conditioning in the room.

Thats good, little problem with air conditioning is it can dry out the room, double check your humidity. He don't look dehydrated but if possible try to pinch the skin close to the belly and look if it turn back to normal quickly. If possible you can add picture of the inside of the mouth (this ca reveal many details)

3)Never anything that looked like difficulty breathing or mouth gasping at all. No swelling around the mouth.

thats a good things ;)

4) I have been doing the sunlight thing except this week when it was over 100. Now it’s 68 degrees and I can put him outside again.

good things too

5)which supplement have I overdone? Other than the vitamin d that I stopped a year ago?

again vitamin D3 :/ since he have a good UVB light and you provide him natural sun light, with a background of over suplementation the rep ashy calcium + on 2/3 of the feeding is too much (so before you give way to much now you give only too much) Probably same things for all the others vitamins inside the calcium plus (like vitamin A and E.. all fatty vitamin and can accumulate in the body) cut it down with your other chameleon too because since he was kind of a rescue, now he is healthy and don't need that much of D. (I use the loD (sometime the NoD version of repashy max 1 time a week with my panther)

So for now.. cut every supplementation and provide natural sunlight as much as you can, and water all he can drink, try to help those kidney

Could I wrap his cage more to help with humidity? He has always had no trouble shedding. I put another monitor in there closer to his plants and it says 65%. I read so much before I got him about air flow and fungal infections that it scared me.

I do have another one. He has a slightly larger plant and he is in the same room. I feed him the same way. His weight is 132 g. (He had been neglected when I got him and was only 30g and 10 months old.) He is fine. I will make sure his supplements are correct. The information is so contradictory. I am sure a thread on here or care sheet will have better info.


Thank you
 

hilizanne

Member
He is outside now and I misted his cage and his ficus plant thoroughly. He got a big drink and I caught a pretty good mouth picture I think. It’s 74 degrees out right now. I am off work today and can add plants and more wall coverage today. I also have a fogger that I am not using. I have it for my frogs. Would that help?
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Lennoncham

Chameleon Enthusiast
Calcium plus

This has a lot of vitamins in it and shouldn’t be used so much. I can’t say for certain as I’m not a vet and I’m not with the animal but you say they haven’t helped you so. I believe he may have a vitamin overdose.

If it was my Cham. And I say this lightly as I don’t want to give you the wrong advice. I would stop all supplements. Increase the amount of misting and increase the basking temperature a bit to help flush the vitamins out of his system. You said you basking spot is 90-95 so you don’t need to adjust it since this is already on the higher end.
 

Lennoncham

Chameleon Enthusiast
He is outside now and I misted his cage and his ficus plant thoroughly. He got a big drink and I caught a pretty good mouth picture I think. It’s 74 degrees out right now. I am off work today and can add plants and more wall coverage today. I also have a fogger that I am not using. I have it for my frogs. Would that help? View attachment 240469View attachment 240470

Only use the fogger at night. High humidity and heat from a basking light can cause a respiratory infection.
 

hilizanne

Member
This has a lot of vitamins in it and shouldn’t be used so much. I can’t say for certain as I’m not a vet and I’m not with the animal but you say they haven’t helped you so. I believe he may have a vitamin overdose.

If it was my Cham. And I say this lightly as I don’t want to give you the wrong advice. I would stop all supplements. Increase the amount of misting and increase the basking temperature a bit to help flush the vitamins out of his system. You said you basking spot is 90-95 so you don’t need to adjust it since this is already on the higher end.

I really thought I had underdosed him on vitamin A so I started using that instead. Kammerflage recommends that one only. Says it’s enough for all of its chameleons. I asked the vet in June and actually took it with me. She said to keep using it. I probably wasn’t using it as much before—just every other feeding probably but I have been since. I should have asked on here before but I was afraid of criticism, so of course I wait until it’s more serious, which is not very smart. I have had bad experiences on dendroboard.com before, even though I end up learning a lot. I hate feeling guilty when I try so hard to do the right thing. I read for a whole year before I bought Seymour and read because I was so afraid of doing the wrong thing. But I can’t get a straight answer and I have books but they all say something different.

So you do not think he has low vitamin A? I just thought because it seemed to start with his eyes.

If he does start to eat again I will not supplement and will ask you all before I do (assuming he does wake up).

I have considered driving the 4 hours to a vet and I might do that as soon as my schedule allows. Santa Fe and Oklahoma City are my options. Dallas of course but that is 7 hours.

Thank you.
 

hilizanne

Member
This has a lot of vitamins in it and shouldn’t be used so much. I can’t say for certain as I’m not a vet and I’m not with the animal but you say they haven’t helped you so. I believe he may have a vitamin overdose.

If it was my Cham. And I say this lightly as I don’t want to give you the wrong advice. I would stop all supplements. Increase the amount of misting and increase the basking temperature a bit to help flush the vitamins out of his system. You said you basking spot is 90-95 so you don’t need to adjust it since this is already on the higher end.

I’m sorry I can’t figure out the quote thing.
The 90-95 is only directly under the bulb...like 3 inches. Another 3 inches down it’s 85. He almost never goes to the very top.
 

Lennoncham

Chameleon Enthusiast
I really thought I had underdosed him on vitamin A so I started using that instead. Kammerflage recommends that one only. Says it’s enough for all of its chameleons. I asked the vet in June and actually took it with me. She said to keep using it. I probably wasn’t using it as much before—just every other feeding probably but I have been since. I should have asked on here before but I was afraid of criticism, so of course I wait until it’s more serious, which is not very smart. I have had bad experiences on dendroboard.com before, even though I end up learning a lot. I hate feeling guilty when I try so hard to do the right thing. I read for a whole year before I bought Seymour and read because I was so afraid of doing the wrong thing. But I can’t get a straight answer and I have books but they all say something different.

So you do not think he has low vitamin A? I just thought because it seemed to start with his eyes.

If he does start to eat again I will not supplement and will ask you all before I do (assuming he does wake up).

I have considered driving the 4 hours to a vet and I might do that as soon as my schedule allows. Santa Fe and Oklahoma City are my options. Dallas of course but that is 7 hours.

Thank you.

Never be afraid to ask questions on here. We are here to help each other learn. Sometimes people come off rude but just ignore us when we do.

You can use the repashy calcium plus lo-d with every feeding. The regular one has a lot of vit d3 and vit a in it.

Or you can do a 3 part system with a calcium without d3 every feeding except a multivitamin once every 2 weeks and a calcium with d3 once every 2 weeks on alternating weeks. So multi for one feeding one week then d3 for one feeding the next week.

Under supplementation of vit a can present as an eye issue but since it is so easy to overdose vit a it should only be given once a month.

This is where it gets tricky because over supplementing of vitamins can also present as an eye issue.

When they have to much or to little vitamins or minerals it throws the entire system out of whack.

It usually presents as an eye issue first because that is one of the weakest points. Once people notice the eye issue they go vit a deficiency. And dehydration. Then they start giving to much vitamin a supplements and misting way to much risking vit a overdose and a respiratory infection. All the while the chameleons system is getting even more thrown out of whack from all the extra supplements he’s getting. The keeper keeps wondering why the eyes aren’t getting better and give more misting and more vit a until it is far to late and the chameleon get renal failure and dies.

If you do take him to the vet present this to them as an option. I had a similar issue with Cynthia my female panther when I first got her and I had a very knowledgeable chameleon vet tell me all the things that it could be except for this and it turned of to be a supplement issues. I stopped all supplements and a week and a half later both eyes were open and perfect. All after a month and a half of going to the vet and getting eye drops and fecal test and bacteria swabs.

This doesn’t mean that it is the same for your Cham just my experience.
 
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Lennoncham

Chameleon Enthusiast
Taking him to a good extoics vet with chameleon experience would be the best option. @jannb do you know and exotics vets that might be closer to Amarillo Texas?
 
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