Advice please

barbara

New Member
Hi this is my first post and i need help please. My son gave me his male yemen as he could no longer keep him, he has a repti 5 bulb a basking bulb, he is kept at 85 during the day and drops to about 70 at night, he has been given all the right vitamins and calcium and all his food is gut loaded. I have only had him 2 weeks and noticed that sometimes when he walks his feet seem to grab his head, then 2 days ago he just fell off his branch. I have spent hours reseaching this and i think you will probably agree its MBD. I have made an appointment at the vets on monday but what i would like to know is what is the success rate of calcium injections, i would like to know if he will be able to climb on his branches again and what quality of life he will have. Sorry for all the questions but i am really upset and worried about him, when i get an animal i like to do the best for them and it hurts that this little fella is suffering. Could someone advise me please.
 

jojackson

New Member
If his food is regularly supplimented, including calcium WITH D3, have you checked that the life of the reptisun 5 has not passed its peak output, how old is the tube?
Most folk recommend these be changed each 6-8 months to ensure best output strength, after this time uvb levels are diminished and degrade over time.
D3 in the suppliments should be considered a bandaid only, its important the lizard receives uvb as much as possible (natural is better than artificial) in order to metabolise D3 it requires.
dropping levels of D3 as your lizards requirements grow along with it, combined with an inability to create its own (through absorbtion of uvb) will cause symptoms you describe,
weakness etc.
left untended this will deteriorate quickly over a few months, to include soft 'rubbery' limbs, jaws, an inability to climb and walk and the lizards quality of life drops sharply along with its life expectancy.

Now that I've worried you silly (sorry :)) please fill out the questionaire linked in my sig by cutting and pasting, as best you can, and if possible, a photo would be great! :)
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Enthusiast
Welcome to the forum and the world of chameleons!

If MBD is caught in time the chameleon can live a fairly long life. Lack of calcium affects not only bones but the muscles and organs as well. Any damage like bent/broken limbs, etc. will not be fixed by the treatment though.

Injections of calcium followed by an injection of calcitonin once the blood calcium levels are high enough is the quickest way to correct the problem.
 

barbara

New Member
Really sorry but i am rubbish with computers but will try and explain best i can. He is 5 months old, my son has had him for 4 months, he bought the repti5 bulb when he got the chameleon, he was using exo terra calcium and multi vitamins, he was feeding the correct size locust [no wider than his mouth] wax worms,meal worms, grated veg and was gut loading his food, he lives in a exo terra 45x45x60 he is approx 5inches long not including his tail.. After reading about mbd i have noticed his joints are slightly rounded, his eyes are fine and his colour is bright. I watched him eating around 6 locust and 2 waxworms on thursday afternoon, it was thursday evening when i saw him hanging by his branch by his tail, i took him off and placed him on the floor of his viv and since then he seems to have no coordination in his legs, he grabs his head when he tries to walk. He is still eating but out of my hand and it taking drops of water from a syringe. I have put a reptile hammock half way up his viv and have been putting him in there during the day so as he gets some heat.
 

jojackson

New Member
Sorry B, my sig seems to be invalid now.
These questions are important to give would be helpers, a bigger picture.


Chameleon Info:
Your Chameleon - The species, sex, and age of your chameleon. How long has it been in your care?
Handling - How often do you handle your chameleon?
Feeding - What are you feeding your cham? What amount? What is the schedule? How are you gut-loading your feeders?
Supplements - What brand and type of calcium and vitamin products are you dusting your feeders with and what is the schedule?
Watering - What kind of watering technique do you use? How often and how long to you mist? Do you see your chameleon drinking?
Fecal Description - Briefly note colors and consistency from recent droppings. Has this chameleon ever been tested for parasites?
History - Any previous information about your cham that might be useful to others when trying to help you.

Cage Info:
Cage Type - Describe your cage (Glass, Screen, Combo?) What are the dimensions?
Lighting - What brand, model, and types of lighting are you using? What is your daily lighting schedule?
Temperature - What temp range have you created (cage floor to basking spot)? Lowest overnight temp? How do you measure these temps?
Humidity - What are your humidity levels? How are you creating and maintaining these levels? What do you use to measure humidity?
Plants - Are you using live plants? If so, what kind?
Placement - Where is your cage located? Is it near any fans, air vents, or high traffic areas? At what height is the top of the cage relative to your room floor?
Location - Where are you geographically located?

Current Problem -

Since its apparently sudden or only been recently noticed, have there been any other changes to the lizards diet or enviroment recently?
Im still a little baffled, perhaps if you fill out the info above (I know its alot) ? :)
 

barbara

New Member
Really sorry cant find the form to fill in. The only recent changes are that he he has come to live with me 2 weeks ago and i have put him in a bigger home, it is exactly the way my son had it only bigger, he set it up with the same cage furniture and we made sure the temps were the same before we put him in. I did not handle him as i did not want to stress him and he is in a quiet part of the house.
 

jannb

Chameleon Enthusiast

jojackson

New Member
B, this IS the form, please insert your answers? :)

Chameleon Info:
Your Chameleon - The species, sex, and age of your chameleon. How long has it been in your care?
Handling - How often do you handle your chameleon?
Feeding - What are you feeding your cham? What amount? What is the schedule? How are you gut-loading your feeders?
Supplements - What brand and type of calcium and vitamin products are you dusting your feeders with and what is the schedule?
Watering - What kind of watering technique do you use? How often and how long to you mist? Do you see your chameleon drinking?
Fecal Description - Briefly note colors and consistency from recent droppings. Has this chameleon ever been tested for parasites?
History - Any previous information about your cham that might be useful to others when trying to help you.

Cage Info:
Cage Type - Describe your cage (Glass, Screen, Combo?) What are the dimensions?
Lighting - What brand, model, and types of lighting are you using? What is your daily lighting schedule?
Temperature - What temp range have you created (cage floor to basking spot)? Lowest overnight temp? How do you measure these temps?
Humidity - What are your humidity levels? How are you creating and maintaining these levels? What do you use to measure humidity?
Plants - Are you using live plants? If so, what kind?
Placement - Where is your cage located? Is it near any fans, air vents, or high traffic areas? At what height is the top of the cage relative to your room floor?
Location - Where are you geographically located?

Current Problem -
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Enthusiast
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/
 
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