2 Week Old - Need Help.

Necorawr

New Member
Chameleon Info:

* Your Chameleon - Veiled Chameleon, two weeks old, 5 days.
* Handling - Twice since I brought him home, the first to put him in his tank and the second to put eyedrops in his eye.
* Feeding - Small crickets, two to three twice a day. The crickets have been dusted once with ReptoCal (two crickets total) and there is Flukers high calcium cricket diet in the bottom of their container.
* Watering - A small spray bottle on the leaves and his branches. I spray his tank three times daily, more if it dries up. He drinks after I finish spraying, and I also have a dripper that goes onto one of his branches.
* Fecal Description - Brown to dark brown poo with white.
* History - I saw him a week before I bought him with two other baby chameleons in a tank at Petco. When I went back (technically like three days later) one of the chameleons was 'missing' and the other had been smashed in the door. He was the only survivor. I watched him, and his eyes looked a little sunken in, (I'd done a lot of research) but I bought him anyways.

Cage Info:

* Cage Type - Glass 8 gallon tank, I'd read (please tell me if this isn't true) that baby chameleons could be kept in such an enclosure only when they're tiny. It has a screen top.
* Lighting - At 11:30am I'll turn on a 'day' Zoo Med bulb, it's 60 watts and blue. At around 9:30-10pm I turn it off and switch it with a 'night' bulb, which is red, and bring it a little closer to the tank to keep him warm. My apartment gets veryvery cold at night, and I've seen him crawl up close to it and look brown before. I lowered the lamp and turned off my fan, and he was bright green again. I don't have a UVB light but I'm buying one in a few days.
* Temperature - I keep his tank at about 80-85 degrees during the day and drops to around 77 at night as long as the red light is on. I have a little thermometer.
* Humidity - A little circle humidity measurer (thing?) and his tank is kept at about 60% humidity.
* Plants - Silk plants because I wanted to wait until he got bigger to bring in any live plants. Silk ficus and orchid. I've seen not to give real ficus plants, but I didn't think silk would be bad.
* Placement - On the desk next to my computer, it's not a high traffic area as me and my boyfriend are the only two ever in here, but there's not a lot of noise. Both sides of his tank are covered up so he can't see movements from the side. The tank is about four feet up off of the ground.
* Location - Around the Dallas, Texas area.


Current Problem - He's started to close one eye sometimes. His other will still be looking around, but then he will close his right eye like something is in it. I read on another forum to try eyedrops, and while this helped the first day, he's done it again. And I just looked into his tank, and it's 1:34 pm right now (though a bit cold because I have the lid off to examine him) he had both eyes closed. I took a picture, he opened the left one, but the right is still closed. It looks like it's closed tight, too. I'm worried because hes only two weeks (if that, hes an inch and a half long without a tail) there could be something very wrong with him right now. What should I do and what can I do to help his eye?


PICTURES: (I forgot to add them the first time)
http://i246.photobucket.com/albums/gg81/Necorawr/Photo3285.jpg
http://i246.photobucket.com/albums/gg81/Necorawr/asda.jpg
http://i246.photobucket.com/albums/gg81/Necorawr/Photo3294.jpg
http://i246.photobucket.com/albums/gg81/Necorawr/Photo3295.jpg

The first one is his size, the second is his closed eye, the third is his tank, and the fourth is how hes sitting in his tank now with one eye closed.
 
Last edited:

jenstar

New Member
he could be tired and trying to sleep during the day. I would suggest you get fid of the red heat lamp as they need total darkness to sleep properly. If you place does get really cold and you need heat at night, you can buy a ceramic heater that just gives off heat and no light. Also, your light scheduling seems a bit late in the day. Because it gets light in your house before his lights come on, he might already be awake when his lights are on and then you keep them on till late which causes him to stay up longer. I would suggest a 8 - 8 or 7 -7 or something like that. Also a trip to the vet wouldn't hurt if they eye thing is consistent. You can also try offering him more crickets as they tend to eat 10 - 15 as babies. I also didn't read anything about a UVB light? That's extremely important for your cham's survival. Reptisun 5.0 is recommended by most.

I hope this helps :)
 

Necorawr

New Member
he could be tired and trying to sleep during the day. I would suggest you get fid of the red heat lamp as they need total darkness to sleep properly. If you place does get really cold and you need heat at night, you can buy a ceramic heater that just gives off heat and no light. Also, your light scheduling seems a bit late in the day. Because it gets light in your house before his lights come on, he might already be awake when his lights are on and then you keep them on till late which causes him to stay up longer. I would suggest a 8 - 8 or 7 -7 or something like that. Also a trip to the vet wouldn't hurt if they eye thing is consistent. You can also try offering him more crickets as they tend to eat 10 - 15 as babies. I also didn't read anything about a UVB light? That's extremely important for your cham's survival. Reptisun 5.0 is recommended by most.

I hope this helps :)

Is there a specific type of space heater for chameleons or can I just go to like, walmart and buy one? I was also thinking about buying a little heating pad for the bottom of his tank to replace the red bulb with, would that help at all?

And I don't have a UVB, I did take him outside one day though and he crawled around in the little cup I had him in. The reptisun light, is that one of the long ones with the black top?

Also, thank you very much!
 

brandychams

New Member
first off glad to hear u saved him from certain death!! the tank will work for a little while but youll need to upgrade to a screen cage soon. for baby veileds the basking temp should be low 80s with a cooler side at 65- 70 definately get the uvb asap. no light at night not even red it can drop to 60 before worring and if it id cold get a ceramic heat emitter to keep him warm
hell need 3 kind of supplements cal with no d3 almost every feeding cal with d3 twice a month and a multivite twice a month. check out sandrachameleons gutloading recipe to feed your feeders before he eats them theyll pass the nutrition to him. as far as the eye maybe someone else has some ideas for you besides the saline drops:D
 

Lingling

New Member
Congrats on the new cham! They're so cute when they're little.

Well, there's a couple things that I see that may be causing the problem with his eye, as well as a couple things that could certainly cause future problems. First thing - Petco. Whatever advice you were given there is probably useless. They mean well, they're just rather ignorant when it comes to chams... not in a bad way, they just don't know. Personally, I wish they didn't sell chams at all.

As far as your setup, there are a few things you might want to change to keep the little guy healthy.
1) I wouldn't use the Fluker's as my primary gutload. It's just insufficient when it comes to getting your cham all the nutrients he needs. Fresh fruits and vegetables are best. I'm sure someone will post a link to show you what exactly to gutload with. There are a couple really good websites on the topic.
2) It is true that you don't want to put such a tiny cham in a 2x2x4 screen cage that he'll need as an adult! But, he'll outgrow an 8 gallon in no time. I would start preparing already to get him a screen cage (not glass). Aquariums don't provide enough ventilation and therefore can lead to respiratory disease. Also, in something as small as 8 gallons, you really won't be able to provide a warm basking spot without overheating the whole cage. If you can move him to a small screen cage, then that'd be great. He'll do much better in screen, and with a little more space to allow him to regulate his temperature.
3) You could keep the 60 watt "day" bulb for basking, but he absolutely needs a flourescent strip light (not a screw in bulb) to recieve UVB with helps him absorb calcium. Without it, his bones will become soft because of Metabolic Bone Disease (MBD). Everyone on this forum uses the Reptisun 5.0 bulbs for UVB. So he needs two light sources - one for heat, and one for UVB. What is the temperature in your apartment at night without the night bulb? Lower temperatures at night are healthy for your cham. Unless it drops below 65, I would not use any bulb at night. Some chams are bothered by even small amounts of light while they're trying to sleep, others aren't.
4) His tank is a little too warm during the day. Honestly, using a small aquarium, it will be hard to avoid that. Try moving the bulb farther from the top until you can get him in a larger cage. 80-85 should be his basking temp, the warmest area in his cage (Someone correct me if I'm wrong on this temp). He needs cooler places too.

Real plants help maintain humidity, and there's absolutely no problem with most common types of ficus. Ficus benjamina and alii are some of the most popular plants for cham cages. Pothos are great as well.

Getting the proper set up can be confusing at first, especially when you've been given wrong information from people who are supposed to be knowledgable. This forum is the best place I know for solid information, and it's great to have you here!
 

Necorawr

New Member
@Brandychams, Thank you! I'll have to add a special schedule to the calender for when he eats certain crickets with certain powders on them, then!

@LingLing - Thank you! I'm glad to have found the forums, it took a few days, but they've already been really helpful!
Is there a specific type of fruit or veggie I need to put in there with them? I saw the little orange squares at the store, but I could go and buy some lettuce and other greens to better help with that instead.
At night I'm not sure how cold the apartment gets, but I don't think it's ever gotten below 65. So I'll try leaving the light off tonight and see how he does with that. If he still looks cold, I'll get one of the ceramic heaters instead and go from that route!
 

Lingling

New Member
@LingLing - Thank you! I'm glad to have found the forums, it took a few days, but they've already been really helpful!
Is there a specific type of fruit or veggie I need to put in there with them? I saw the little orange squares at the store, but I could go and buy some lettuce and other greens to better help with that instead.
At night I'm not sure how cold the apartment gets, but I don't think it's ever gotten below 65. So I'll try leaving the light off tonight and see how he does with that. If he still looks cold, I'll get one of the ceramic heaters instead and go from that route!
If my "looking cold" you mean hiding away in a high corner to sleep, then that's normal. He'll be a different color when he sleeps and he'll probably tuck away out of sight, so if that is what looking cold means to you, then I wouldn't worry. Just check your overnight temps. Above 60-65 = no heat source.

Here's a short list and great links I copied from an old thread:
The best fruits and veg are:
Dandelion leaves
Papaya
oranges
yam
butternut squash
carrot

see a lengthier list here:
https://www.chameleonforums.com/blogs...utloading.html

http://www.greenigsociety.org/foodchart.htm
 

Lingling

New Member
The reptisun light, is that one of the long ones with the black top?
Yes, it's a flourescent strip light, like what comes with an aquarium. You can use any aquarium fixture or find them cheap at Walmart ($8, made to be mounted under a cabinet, but could use it however). If you want something that looks a little nicer you can find 24" strip lights made for reptiles at almost any pet store or online. Whatever fixture you get, make sure you buy the reptisun 5.0 bulb. Not all flourescent lights put off UVB.
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Enthusiast
You said..."Small crickets, two to three twice a day. The crickets have been dusted once with ReptoCal (two crickets total) and there is Flukers high calcium cricket diet in the bottom of their container"...at this age I would think he would eat more than 6 small crickets a day....but maybe you are using bigger ones than I would think?

I even keep adult chameleons in glass cages...but I live in Ontario.

The most often recommended UVB light is the long linear fluorescent Repti-sun 5.0 UVB tube light. For a basking light you can use a regular incandescent household bulb in a domed hood...but at that age I use a double fluorescent fixture with a UVB light and a regular fluorescent light in it. The main point is to have the temperature in the warmest part of the cage in the low 80's. If the temperature doesn't go lower than the mid 60's overnight you don't need any heat at night....and no light for sure! If you need heat at night I would recommend using one of those ceramic heat "bulbs"....they don't produce light.
Silk plants are okay for a couple of months, but veileds eat leaves, etc. so I would get some real ones. You don't want him to take a bite out of a fake leaf because if he ingests it it could cause an impaction. Make sure you wash the leaves of the real plants (both sides of the leaves) before you add them to the cage. Pothos, ficus, hibiscus are all okay to use.

Here's some information you might find helpful......
Exposure to proper UVB, appropriate temperatures, supplements, a supply of well-fed/gutloaded insects, water and an appropriate cage set-up are all important for the well-being of your chameleon.

Appropriate cage temperatures aid in digestion and thus play a part indirectly in nutrient absorption.

Exposure to UVB from either direct sunlight or a proper UVB light allows the chameleon to produce D3 so that it can use the calcium in its system to make/keep the bones strong and be used in other systems in the chameleon as well. The UVB should not pass through glass or plastic no matter whether its from the sun or the UVB light. The most often recommended UVB light is the long linear fluorescent Repti-sun 5.0 tube light. Some of the compacts, spirals and tube lights have caused health issues, but so far there have been no bad reports against this one.

Since many of the feeder insects have a poor ratio of calcium to phosphorus in them, its important to dust the insects before you feed them to the chameleon with a phos.-free calcium powder to help make up for it. (I use Rep-cal phosphorus-free calcium).

If you dust twice a month with a phos.-free calcium/D3 powder it will ensure that your chameleon gets some D3 without overdoing it. It leaves the chameleon to produce the rest of what it needs through its exposure to the UVB light. D3 from supplements can build up in the system but D3 produced from exposure to UVB shouldn't as long as the chameleon can move in and out of it. (I use Rep-cal phos.-free calcium/D3).

Dusting twice a month with a vitamin powder that contains a beta carotene (prOformed) source of vitamin A will ensure that the chameleon gets some vitamins without the danger of overdosing the vitamin A. PrEformed sources of vitamin A can build up in the system and may prevent the D3 from doing its job and push the chameleon towards MBD. However, there is controversy as to whether all/any chameleons can convert the beta carotene and so some people give some prEformed vitamin A once in a while. (I use herptivite.)

Gutloading/feeding the insects well helps to provide what the chameleon needs. I gutload crickets, roaches, locusts, superworms, etc. with an assortment of greens (dandelions, kale, collards, endive, escarole, mustard greens, etc.) and veggies (carrots, squash, sweet potato, sweet red pepper, zucchini, etc.)

Calcium, phos., D3 and vitamin A are important players in bone health and other systems in the chameleon (muscles, etc.) and they need to be in balance. When trying to balance them, you need to look at the supplements, what you feed the insects and what you feed the chameleon.

Here are some good sites for you to read...
http://chameleonnews.com/07FebWheelock.html
http://web.archive.org/web/200605020...Vitamin.A.html
http://web.archive.org/web/200604210...d.Calcium.html
http://www.uvguide.co.uk/
http://raisingkittytheveiledchameleon.blogspot.com/
http://web.archive.org/web/200601140...ww.adcham.com/
 

Chameleonfan1

New Member
Take off the Red Heat Lamp?

:D:D Ummmm, NO they don't see the shade of color that the heat lamp is in so don't take it off. Plus maybe he needs privacy, if there are any pets around or your constantly watching him he could be sleep deprevated so just let him be for a while mine was doing the same until I gave him privacy then he did much better. Plus I've read never buy them unless they are at least 4 weeks old because the change could be very shocking on the little guy. So basically, I'm no expert or anything but I would just try, Privacy.
 

Necorawr

New Member
Ummm. HELP.

I appreciate all the information about feeding and lighting and whatnot. (Thank ya'll very much!)
But, his eye is still acting funny, what can I do about it?
I literally -just- saw him bulge it out really big and then start itching it on a branch. It's small again now and hes looking around, but it still freaked me out. Is that normal? Could there be something in his eye? Should I give him more saline?
I might still just be having those jitters, it just scared me a little bit!
 

Necorawr

New Member
alot of times theyll "puff' thier eye to try to dislodge debris or stuck on shed try exra misting with warm water :D
Can I mist him even though hes so tiny? I saw somewhere that they could like, drown or something like that. It gets in their lungs, or something.
Just, spray him with a little spray bottle?
 

carol5208

Chameleon Enthusiast
:D:D Ummmm, NO they don't see the shade of color that the heat lamp is in so don't take it off. Plus maybe he needs privacy, if there are any pets around or your constantly watching him he could be sleep deprevated so just let him be for a while mine was doing the same until I gave him privacy then he did much better. Plus I've read never buy them unless they are at least 4 weeks old because the change could be very shocking on the little guy. So basically, I'm no expert or anything but I would just try, Privacy.
I don't think she is talking about the shade/dome, he means the bulb. Who says they cannot see the red?
 

carol5208

Chameleon Enthusiast
Can I mist him even though hes so tiny? I saw somewhere that they could like, drown or something like that. It gets in their lungs, or something.
Just, spray him with a little spray bottle?
Just try not to mist him directly but I know that is hard in such a small tank. You are more or less trying to mist the environment so the humidity goes up and the leaves and branches get wet so he can drink. I have a question? you said one was smashed in the door? Was it sitting there smashed inthe door? I think I would have went ballistic on them!
 

Lingling

New Member
I appreciate all the information about feeding and lighting and whatnot. (Thank ya'll very much!)
But, his eye is still acting funny, what can I do about it?
I literally -just- saw him bulge it out really big and then start itching it on a branch. It's small again now and hes looking around, but it still freaked me out. Is that normal? Could there be something in his eye? Should I give him more saline?
I might still just be having those jitters, it just scared me a little bit!
My panther did the same thing with his eyes when he was about a month old. It was only when the humidity was too low. He could have something caught in his eye, or his eyes could just be dry. Misting more often with warm water will definitely help. You could also put him in the shower for a little while, say 15-20 minutes.Turn the showerhead against the wall so that it sort of sends mist all over and run warm water. You could either move his whole cage into the shower or just put him on a plant. As long as the water isn't directed toward him, he'll probably love the warm temp and high humidity. If there is something in his eye, the mist might rinse it out.
 

carol5208

Chameleon Enthusiast
Pet store employees trying to make an extra sale......
Probably sad but true. I am not sure about putting a cham that young of a cham in the shower. I thought I read something on here before about that on here. Hopefully someone can enlighten me on this. I could be wrong!!!
 

laurie

Retired Moderator
:D:D Ummmm, NO they don't see the shade of color that the heat lamp is in so don't take it off. Plus maybe he needs privacy, if there are any pets around or your constantly watching him he could be sleep deprevated so just let him be for a while mine was doing the same until I gave him privacy then he did much better. Plus I've read never buy them unless they are at least 4 weeks old because the change could be very shocking on the little guy. So basically, I'm no expert or anything but I would just try, Privacy.

I don't want to sound rude but we do have some experts on here and it would be good to let them help this new keeper. Kinyongia has many years of experience and is well qualified to advise this person. I am not sure where you heard that chameleons can't see red light - they can. Good chameleon keeping does not allow lights to be on at night. JMO Also asking age at petco is talking to the wind, pretty good chance they have no idea. Since all there chameleons are shipped to them I would doubt the cham was that young. But at petco anything is possible.
 

Necorawr

New Member
Just try not to mist him directly but I know that is hard in such a small tank. You are more or less trying to mist the environment so the humidity goes up and the leaves and branches get wet so he can drink. I have a question? you said one was smashed in the door? Was it sitting there smashed inthe door? I think I would have went ballistic on them!
Yeah it was literally just sitting there, smashed in the door. All that was hanging out was the back half of his body. I have to admit, I did get angry and I grabbed the manager and was like "WHAT IS THIS?" and pointed at it. They ran around like chickens with their heads cut off for a few minutes trying to figure out what to do before finally just sliding the door back. He was smashed.
 
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