Another Newbie Here & Boy Can I Use Some Help

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Frostyx, Oct 10, 2018.

  1. Frostyx

    Frostyx New Member

    Hi everyone! First I would like to say I am so so so happy that I found this forum. Let me give you a little back story. I have never owned any reptile in my life. I am however a pretty caring person. So when I went to this pet shop not to far from me I saw the chameleons and I was just like, “Wow these things are so cool, I would love to have one!” And of course, trying to make a sale, they made it sound so easy to take care of these little guys. Not at all! Which I’m not complaining about by any means! I got him on the 6th which was this past Saturday. Since then I’ve been so swamped doing all sorts of research on these guys and trying to figure out everything I can to keep this little man alive. His name is Mojo by the way.
    -Anyways let me get to it.
    Mojo does not appear to be very healthy. I sent the animal shop a picture of my set up and they told me it was great. Total lie, it was awful. So here are some questions I have for everyone.
    First of all, these people told me to put the light directly on the cage, I came home to see part of the back of the cage began to melt. So now I’m freaking out. They also said this small glass 24x12x12 cage was perfect for him all the way until he matured. Total lie after all the research I’ve done. So I was going to go out to the store immediately and buy a 48x24x24 cage but my problem is he’s only about 4 weeks old. So the picture you’re seeing of Mojo is when I came home before it was lights out time and he looked so beautiful and healthy. But he just gets so dark and grey so often and I read that that means they’re stressed and unhappy. So I’m stressing. I’ve been misting his cage several times a day to keep the humidity between 50-60 percent. I have fake plants in his cage, nothing real. He also eats a ton. I’ve been giving him “small” crickets from PetSmart. I use a calcium without d3 every time I feed him and I also have a multivitamin and a calcium with d3 that Ill give him once every 2 weeks. I got all the UV 5.0 and the basking light set up but I believe the basking light was melting part of his cage. Nevertheless he was so grey and dull yesterday and I decided to move his cage around and wipe it down a bit (I had them set it up there for me. They appeared to know a decent amount about the animal?) but they didn’t have a nice high spot set up for him to bask under so that’s why I changed it around. However when I did finally get him out (he did not want out) he turned back to that beautiful light green color which made me happy personally lol. I’m gonna attach pictures of this enclosure. Please don’t hate me to hard, I’m doing anything and everything in my power to make sure this little guy has the right home. I’ve also been gut loading the crickets with this high calcium cricket food and carrots. Sorry it’s so much to read I’m just stressed and scared for my little buddy Mojo
     

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  2. mae_day

    mae_day Member

    Hiya!

    Please give us some more information about your cham and enclosure set up with this form. You definitely covered a lot of these points but it's important to get a full picture. Also, thanks for the pics!:

    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 - The current problem you are concerned about.
     
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  3. Syreptyon

    Syreptyon Chameleon Enthusiast

    The basking light is too hot. You have to test the cage's parameters before putting a chameleon in it. Either get a dimmer to lower the heat output or just get an incadescent household light bulb with a lower wattage. You need to get a reliable temperature probe to measure the temp beneath the bulb or you will melt your enclosure (like you already have started) and burn your chameleon.

    Secondly, chameleons are color-changers. It's kind of their big thing ;) It is very common for veiled chameleons to display duller gray/brown colors, so I woudn't get bent out of shape over that. While the bright colors are really attractive to our eyes, calm chameleons actually show less intense colors and patterns
     
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  4. ERKleRose

    ERKleRose Chameleon Enthusiast

    The foam background melted, not the cage. If he’s bright green, then he’s firing up (scared or angry). He could be dull from stress or being cold, or it’s just his resting colors. Do you have a compact or linear uvb bulb? Have you read the veiled chameleon care sheet here? Please fill out the form, along with a pic of his back feet and another pic of the full enclosure (lights, too).
     
  5. Frostyx

    Frostyx New Member

    How can I test a cages parameters? I don’t really know what that means. Also the light dimmer, maybe I’ll get one of those? I hope I haven’t burned my poor little mojo. Would he be fine in such a big cage though if I did go buy him the 48x24x24? I’m just concerned about his health and as part of this styrofoam looking stuff has melted, I’m scared he may have breathed in some unwanted fumes. I’m aware they change colors hahaha I was just reading that the grey/brown was bad. But I’m glad to hear it’s not. Maybe I’m more stressed out than he is
     
  6. ERKleRose

    ERKleRose Chameleon Enthusiast

    Fill out the form and we can help you better
     
  7. Frostyx

    Frostyx New Member

    I’ll post all of that right now. But then does that mean the picture i took of him and used as my profile picture is him in a bad state? That was when I just had gotten home and he was just hanging out
     
  8. mae_day

    mae_day Member

    This usually means a combination of temperature and humidity. The temperature refers to the temperature gradient in the cage from the basking spot (warmest spot in the cage the cham can reach) to the ambient temperature (near the bottom). The humidity is a relative measurement (obviously it's very high right as you mist the cage).
     
    ERKleRose likes this.
  9. ERKleRose

    ERKleRose Chameleon Enthusiast

    No, it should be fine, get a picture of his back feet so we can make sure he’s really a he. Did you read the veiled care sheet here?
     
  10. ERKleRose

    ERKleRose Chameleon Enthusiast

  11. Frostyx

    Frostyx New Member

    Chameleon Info:
    • Your Chameleon -veiled chameleon, male, about 4-5 weeks, he has been in my care for about 4 days
    • Handling - I handled him on the 6th of October when I got him and then yesterday on the 9th when I moved and wiped down his cage. I do try and hand feed him as often as possible though
    • Feeding - I feed my Cham “small” crickets from PetSmart. I honestly can’t say a certain amount I give him. He seems to really like to eat. I give him maybe between 10 and 12 a day. But I read something that said you baby veiled should have a constant food supply so sometimes I will throw a couple crickets in there when I leave with a chopped carrot so the crickets don’t bite him or something like that. I feed him usually when I get home from work (between 1 and 3 pm) I Gut load the crickets with carrots and the flukers food.
    • Supplements - so basically for his every day feeding I give him Exo Terra calcium. I just throw some in a container and I one by one throw a cricket in there and then into his cage. I also have this Rep-Cal “herptivite” with beta carotene multivitamin. Then I also have repti calcium with D3 and that’s by ZooMed I believe. Then I have Flukers high calcium cricket diet for the crickets.
    • Watering - I honestly never seen my chameleon drink before. I spray his cage often and if I’m not home I ask someone who is to let me know the humidity percentage and if misting is needed I have them do it until I’m home from work.
    • Fecal Description - He has never been tested for parasites. His poop is white and black that’s all I can really see.
    • History - None at all, ima sorry.

    Cage Info:
    • Cage Type - I believe my cage is 24x12x12z it’s glass on 3 sides with foam on the back and a screen on top. It is an exp terra cage. But like I said I am more than willing to go right now and buy a new 24x24x48 cage or whatever. I am absolutely willing to go out and buy anything to keep Mojo alive and healthy
    • Lighting - shit I threw out the boxes for everything yesterday. The casing for the bulbs just looks standard. I’ll attach a picture. The bulbs themself, well I have a UV 5.0 bulb and a 60 watt heating bulb at well. I’ve been bad with the lighting schedule. My first 2 days with him I woke him up at 430 am when I left for work because my sister wasn’t home. Then I turned it off at about 730 pm. But as of yesterday and today I had the light turned on between 730 and 8am and turned off by 8 pm
    • Temperature - I can only tel that it’s around 90 ish at the top where he basks. Overnight I’ve seen it drop to between 60-70. Ive been trying to find one of those temperature gun things.
    • Humidity - trying to keep it between 50-60% I had spray his cage with distilled water. I have a humidity/temp gauge at the top of the cage.
    • Plants - No live plants
    • Placement - my cage is about 2.5 feet off the ground or so. It’s not exactly by a window but near one. There are no vents near by and I have 2 fans in my room but I refuse to turn them on since I’ve gotten him.
    • Location - Chicago IL

    Current Problem - He doesn’t seem healthy to me. I’m afraid I’m doing something wrong.
     
  12. Frostyx

    Frostyx New Member

    Hey thanks! I have read the care sheet. I also am for sure he is a male. He has that little thing that sticks out from behind his feet.
     
  13. Frostyx

    Frostyx New Member

    1. His cage from the front
    2. The melted spot in his cage
    3. Every supplement I use
     

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  14. Frostyx

    Frostyx New Member

    Supplements and poop
     

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  15. Frostyx

    Frostyx New Member

    A picture of him right now and a picture of the light bulbs I have
     

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  16. ERKleRose

    ERKleRose Chameleon Enthusiast

    Okay, so at his age he needs to gorge on fruit flies and mini crickets throughout the day (make sure they’re gutloaded and dusted!). Supplements are good, do you know the schedule for when to use them? The Fluker’s gutload is crap, get Cricket Crack or Sticky Tongue Farms Vit-All or buy fruits and veggies to make your own. If you have the money, invest in an automated mister. Get a screen cage. 2’ by 2’ by 4’ tall is good, since that is the minimum for when he’s fully grown. If you have the money, get a Arcadia 6% t5HO uvb light and fixture. A white light basking bulb is good. Get a timer for the lights! He needs 12 hrs of basking and uvb and 12 hrs of pitch black darkness (no night bulbs!)! 90* might be too high for his age, also add some degrees when measuring to account for the height of your cham.
     
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  17. ERKleRose

    ERKleRose Chameleon Enthusiast

    Are you watering your crickets?
     
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  18. Frostyx

    Frostyx New Member

    Yes always
     
  19. Frostyx

    Frostyx New Member

    Wow this was so helpful thank you so much for the info! So it’s all cool if I get the bigger cage then? I was using the mini crickets before but the only place I can find them is somewhere 10 miles from my house (&I’m in Chicago so it’s weird?) I definitely have money for the auto mister. I really wanted to get one but I thought it would be a huge mess and I was told he only needed to be misted once a day (which now I’m well aware that’s bs lol) but I’ve been misting him often to keep the humidity right in the cage. I have the temp gauge at the top of his cage near where he basks so I assume that’s the temperature there. If I had to take a wild guess I’d say near the bottom of the cage is maybe high 70s to low 80s
     
    ERKleRose likes this.
  20. ERKleRose

    ERKleRose Chameleon Enthusiast

    Order the insects online! The site sponsors are a great place to start!
     
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