At a loss for what is wrong

I am at a loss with what to do with my panther chameleon Julian. I have taken him to 3 different exotic vets, the most recent being highly recommended by many people. His fecals were negative for parasites, his bloodwork came back fantastic according to the vet, no obvious signs of kidney issues or anything else. I really hope someone can help me because the only thing that has changed over the past couple of months is that I moved from an apartment to a house. Please see attached recent photos, older photos, enclosure photo, and bloodwork done on 1-11-21.

Your Chameleon - Panther Chameleon Julian. He is 2 years 3 months old. I've had him for about 9 months. I adopted him from my aunt because she did not have time for him. He was in her care for most of his life. Ever since I adopted him from my aunt, he struggled to wake up each day. For the longest time it would take him a few hours to wake up after his lights came on and he also struggled to go to bed at lights on. For a while in late 2020 he was doing amazing with waking up and going to sleep at the appropriate times. Now there are days where he will not move from his sleep spot at all. He will go 2 days without moving from the spot. Sometimes I will catch him with his left rear leg hanging while he sleeps. He also does not bask regularly and I know this is most likely having an effect on his digestion.

Handling - When I first got him he used to frantically want out of his enclosure, clawing at the screen. No longer frantic and only comes out on his own terms (usually not even once a week). Vet suggested light handling to promote exercise and strengthening of abdominal muscles.

Feeding - Receives a variety of insects including silkworms as a staple, and waxworms and hornworms as "treats". I feed him every other day if he has the energy. Does not eat from a bowl, is only hand fed because his vision does not seem great. He has been given vitamin A and D shots due to some tongue issues experienced previously. Hasn't had tongue issues in awhile, but his vision still does not seem great in his right eye.

Supplements - Repashy Calcium Plus LoD lightly used on all feedings, Repashy Vitamin A Plus w/ Calcium D3 & spirulina lightly once every other week.

Watering - Big dripper with tap water treated with ReptiSafe drops. Mist King setup to run twice a day for 2-3 mins, once in the morning and once in the evening. He used to drink a decent amount from the dripper, but he still seemed to always be slightly dehydrated. I have not seen him drink as much water as he used to because of his lack of energy.

Fecal Description - At the beginning of 2021 I took him to the vet because he was not moving from his sleeping spot each day and his color began to turn yellow which is a color that normally would only show while he slept. He also seemed constipated and had not gone for a few weeks. Blood work was done on 1/11/21 and was fantastic according to my vet and a second opinion. While at this visit Julian became very stressed and upset and made a large bowel movement and expressed himself/dropped sperm plugs. Poops looked normal before the visit when he was still going and were tested for parasites on 7/2/20 and 1/11/21, results negative for both. Urates are usually 'calcified' or hardened, a mix of both white and orange. He has made one bowel movement since 1/11/21 and that was on 3/6/21. The urates were white and overall soft, not calcified like previously, and his poop looked normal. No undigested food. All 3 vets that have seen him have not felt any enlargement of his kidneys.

History - His previous owner had him in a 16x16x30 screen enclosure with a large Chinese Evergreen (this plant was not moved into his new enclosure as it is not safe for him). The plant and vines in his old enclosure were so dense that he did not have anywhere to climb. He also was too close to his old basking lamp and must've developed a small burn on his back at some point while in her care. He also did not have a linear UVB bulb, he had a compact UVB bulb. His old enclosure was never cleaned. There were old poop/urates everywhere, as well as a couple of live dubias hiding in the plant.
He was fed crickets, dubias, and superworms that were only dusted with ReptiCalcium with D3. He was not provided calcium without D3 or a vitamin A supplement. He had a little dripper set up at the top of his enclosure with algae build up, and there was a fogger that was on constantly until it broke. No misting system. He was dehydrated before placed in my care and his tongue did not have any suction/stickiness.
His previous owner also had him outside of the cage fairly often and was surrounded by 3 loud dogs.
The first few days that he was in my care, he appeared very disoriented when it came time for his lights to shut off and he even fell while sleeping once. He did not sustain any injuries when he fell, but it did stun him.

Cage Info:

Cage Type - ReptiBreeze XL 24x24x48 w/ 3 walls covered with shower liner, with drainage holes in the floor into a basin

Lighting - 12 hours of linear T5 HO UVB & basking light BR30 65W flood light, with natural light from a window

Temperature - Ambient temperature 68°-72°, basking spot 78°-85°

Humidity - ~60-70% humidity after misting, ~30-40% otherwise

Plants - Fake plants up high. Bendable vines and dowel rods throughout the enclosure, rods secured through the screen with pins and glue. The right wall is covered with plastic plant panels so that my other chameleon is out of view. I have a large majesty palm plant to place in his enclosure but have not done so because I need to remove him to rearrange the enclosure to fit it.

Placement - Sitting on a card table by a window with natural light. His perch is about 2ft above my eye level.

Note: I also rescued a veiled chameleon from my aunt 5 months prior to rescuing Julian. He is thriving and I have only had to address minor issues with him, but from my understanding veiled chameleons can be a little hardier than panthers.
 

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Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
I am at a loss with what to do with my panther chameleon Julian. I have taken him to 3 different exotic vets, the most recent being highly recommended by many people. His fecals were negative for parasites, his bloodwork came back fantastic according to the vet, no obvious signs of kidney issues or anything else. I really hope someone can help me because the only thing that has changed over the past couple of months is that I moved from an apartment to a house. Please see attached recent photos, older photos, enclosure photo, and bloodwork done on 1-11-21.

Your Chameleon - Panther Chameleon Julian. He is 2 years 3 months old. I've had him for about 9 months. I adopted him from my aunt because she did not have time for him. He was in her care for most of his life. Ever since I adopted him from my aunt, he struggled to wake up each day. For the longest time it would take him a few hours to wake up after his lights came on and he also struggled to go to bed at lights on. For a while in late 2020 he was doing amazing with waking up and going to sleep at the appropriate times. Now there are days where he will not move from his sleep spot at all. He will go 2 days without moving from the spot. Sometimes I will catch him with his left rear leg hanging while he sleeps. He also does not bask regularly and I know this is most likely having an effect on his digestion.

Handling - When I first got him he used to frantically want out of his enclosure, clawing at the screen. No longer frantic and only comes out on his own terms (usually not even once a week). Vet suggested light handling to promote exercise and strengthening of abdominal muscles.

Feeding - Receives a variety of insects including silkworms as a staple, and waxworms and hornworms as "treats". I feed him every other day if he has the energy. Does not eat from a bowl, is only hand fed because his vision does not seem great. He has been given vitamin A and D shots due to some tongue issues experienced previously. Hasn't had tongue issues in awhile, but his vision still does not seem great in his right eye.

Supplements - Repashy Calcium Plus LoD lightly used on all feedings, Repashy Vitamin A Plus w/ Calcium D3 & spirulina lightly once every other week.

Watering - Big dripper with tap water treated with ReptiSafe drops. Mist King setup to run twice a day for 2-3 mins, once in the morning and once in the evening. He used to drink a decent amount from the dripper, but he still seemed to always be slightly dehydrated. I have not seen him drink as much water as he used to because of his lack of energy.

Fecal Description - At the beginning of 2021 I took him to the vet because he was not moving from his sleeping spot each day and his color began to turn yellow which is a color that normally would only show while he slept. He also seemed constipated and had not gone for a few weeks. Blood work was done on 1/11/21 and was fantastic according to my vet and a second opinion. While at this visit Julian became very stressed and upset and made a large bowel movement and expressed himself/dropped sperm plugs. Poops looked normal before the visit when he was still going and were tested for parasites on 7/2/20 and 1/11/21, results negative for both. Urates are usually 'calcified' or hardened, a mix of both white and orange. He has made one bowel movement since 1/11/21 and that was on 3/6/21. The urates were white and overall soft, not calcified like previously, and his poop looked normal. No undigested food. All 3 vets that have seen him have not felt any enlargement of his kidneys.

History - His previous owner had him in a 16x16x30 screen enclosure with a large Chinese Evergreen (this plant was not moved into his new enclosure as it is not safe for him). The plant and vines in his old enclosure were so dense that he did not have anywhere to climb. He also was too close to his old basking lamp and must've developed a small burn on his back at some point while in her care. He also did not have a linear UVB bulb, he had a compact UVB bulb. His old enclosure was never cleaned. There were old poop/urates everywhere, as well as a couple of live dubias hiding in the plant.
He was fed crickets, dubias, and superworms that were only dusted with ReptiCalcium with D3. He was not provided calcium without D3 or a vitamin A supplement. He had a little dripper set up at the top of his enclosure with algae build up, and there was a fogger that was on constantly until it broke. No misting system. He was dehydrated before placed in my care and his tongue did not have any suction/stickiness.
His previous owner also had him outside of the cage fairly often and was surrounded by 3 loud dogs.
The first few days that he was in my care, he appeared very disoriented when it came time for his lights to shut off and he even fell while sleeping once. He did not sustain any injuries when he fell, but it did stun him.

Cage Info:

Cage Type - ReptiBreeze XL 24x24x48 w/ 3 walls covered with shower liner, with drainage holes in the floor into a basin

Lighting - 12 hours of linear T5 HO UVB & basking light BR30 65W flood light, with natural light from a window

Temperature - Ambient temperature 68°-72°, basking spot 78°-85°

Humidity - ~60-70% humidity after misting, ~30-40% otherwise

Plants - Fake plants up high. Bendable vines and dowel rods throughout the enclosure, rods secured through the screen with pins and glue. The right wall is covered with plastic plant panels so that my other chameleon is out of view. I have a large majesty palm plant to place in his enclosure but have not done so because I need to remove him to rearrange the enclosure to fit it.

Placement - Sitting on a card table by a window with natural light. His perch is about 2ft above my eye level.

Note: I also rescued a veiled chameleon from my aunt 5 months prior to rescuing Julian. He is thriving and I have only had to address minor issues with him, but from my understanding veiled chameleons can be a little hardier than panthers.
Hi there welcome to the forum.... A few questions on your boy....

Lighting - 12 hours of linear T5 HO UVB & basking light BR30 65W flood light, with natural light from a window
I just want to double check this... What bulb strength are you using? what is the distance to the branch below it? When was the bulb replaced?


Supplements - Repashy Calcium Plus LoD lightly used on all feedings, Repashy Vitamin A Plus w/ Calcium D3 & spirulina lightly once every other week.
I think he is getting far too much supplementation. This is where I would start if he were mine.... I strongly believe he has a toxicity issue going on. This would explain everything your saying that he is doing.

Repashy vitamin A plus is extremely high in vitamin A... No one I know uses this for chameleons due to the levels it contains.
Repashy LoD is an all in one supplement. Meaning when this is used you would not use anything else. Some use it 2 times a month only for D3, A, and multivitamins. It has calcium without D3, multivitamins, vitamin A, and Calcium with D3.

plus your saying your mixing the vitamin A plus with calcium with D3.... So now he is getting even more D3.

I would do a total switch of supplementation. I would switch to repashy super cal no D for all your feedings then only two times a month use the repashy calcium plus LoD. So every other week say the 1st and the 15th.
This is the no D I would buy: https://www.amazon.com/Repashy-SuperCal-NoD-Oz-JAR/dp/B00N3BKCGA/ref=sr_1_1?crid=3GCDZS7C9PP6K&dchild=1&keywords=repashy+supercal+nod&qid=1616341955&sprefix=repashy+supercal,aps,222&sr=8-1


It can take a good 4-8 weeks for the toxicity issue to reduce so you can see a difference because vitamin A is fat soluble so it stores in the liver. Vitamin A is stored in the body much longer then calcium with D3. So it becomes a waiting game.

But I would bet it is an issue of hyper-vitaminosis from too much vitamin A and D3.

Just to break it down this is what your giving....
Repashy LoD given every feeding : Vitamin A min. 80,000 IU/lb, Vitamin D min. 8,000 IU/lb
Repashy Vitamin A plus given 2 times a month: Vitamin A 2,000,000 IU/lb.
Calcium with D3... Depending on brand this would throw you over your D3 amount with the LoD


What I am suggesting...
Repashy Supercal given at every feeding: NoD has no vitamin A or D3.
Repashy LoD Vitamin A given 2 times a month every other week at one feeding: A min. 80,000 IU/lb, Vitamin D min. 8,000 IU/lb
 
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Hi there welcome to the forum.... A few questions on your boy....


I just want to double check this... What bulb strength are you using? what is the distance to the branch below it? When was the bulb replaced?



I think he is getting far too much supplementation. This is where I would start if he were mine.... I strongly believe he has a toxicity issue going on. This would explain everything your saying that he is doing.

Repashy vitamin A plus is extremely high in vitamin A... No one I know uses this for chameleons due to the levels it contains.
Repashy LoD is an all in one supplement. Meaning when this is used you would not use anything else. Some use it 2 times a month only for D3, A, and multivitamins. It has calcium without D3, multivitamins, vitamin A, and Calcium with D3.

plus your saying your mixing the vitamin A plus with calcium with D3.... So now he is getting even more D3.

I would do a total switch of supplementation. I would switch to repashy super cal no D for all your feedings then only two times a month use the repashy calcium plus LoD. So every other week say the 1st and the 15th.
This is the no D I would buy: https://www.amazon.com/Repashy-SuperCal-NoD-Oz-JAR/dp/B00N3BKCGA/ref=sr_1_1?crid=3GCDZS7C9PP6K&dchild=1&keywords=repashy+supercal+nod&qid=1616341955&sprefix=repashy+supercal,aps,222&sr=8-1


It can take a good 4-8 weeks for the toxicity issue to reduce so you can see a difference because vitamin A is fat soluble so it stores in the liver. Vitamin A is stored in the body much longer then calcium with D3. So it becomes a waiting game.

But I would bet it is an issue of hyper-vitaminosis from too much vitamin A and D3.

Just to break it down this is what your giving....
Repashy LoD given every feeding : Vitamin A min. 80,000 IU/lb, Vitamin D min. 8,000 IU/lb
Repashy Vitamin A plus given 2 times a month: Vitamin A 2,000,000 IU/lb.
Calcium with D3... Depending on brand this would throw you over your D3 amount with the LoD


What I am suggesting...
Repashy Supercal given at every feeding: NoD has no vitamin A or D3.
Repashy LoD Vitamin A given 2 times a month every other week at one feeding: min. 80,000 IU/lb, Vitamin D min. 8,000 IU/lb
Thank you so much for replying @Beman .
To answer your questions:

The bulb is a 5.0 UVB and was replaced a month ago, I replace every 6 months because I do not own a solarmeter. His branches are about 6 inches away from the bulbs. Would around 8 inches be better?

As for the supplementation, what you've said makes so much sense. My vet recommended that vitamin A plus for him since he seemed to have a vitamin A deficiency due to previous eye and tongue issues. I will change up his supplement regimand immediately.
 

Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Thank you so much for replying @Beman .
To answer your questions:

The bulb is a 5.0 UVB and was replaced a month ago, I replace every 6 months because I do not own a solarmeter. His branches are about 6 inches away from the bulbs. Would around 8 inches be better?

As for the supplementation, what you've said makes so much sense. My vet recommended that vitamin A plus for him since he seemed to have a vitamin A deficiency due to previous eye and tongue issues. I will change up his supplement regimand immediately.
So you want the branch to be 8 inches below with the 5.0 bulb in a single bulb T5ho fixture and this will give approximately a 3 UVI level at the branch which is a good range for him. And depending on your fixture make sure that there is not a plastic piece covering the bulb on the bottom. There is a fixture that has this which is why I am mentioning it. I can't tell which one your using.

Yeah unfortunately the Vit A plus is just a bit too intense for long term use. Do not let the vet give him any more vitamin shots... he needs to get the levels reduced. Try to encourage drinking, it won't help flush all the supplements but it will help flush the water soluble ones. If your weather allows for it once he is feeling a bit better get him outside for real sun. Just ensure temps are not too hot.

Like I said this will not be an overnight change, it will take some time. Hopefully after a few weeks you will see him become a bit more alert. I would love for you to keep me updated though. :)
 
So you want the branch to be 8 inches below with the 5.0 bulb in a single bulb T5ho fixture and this will give approximately a 3 UVI level at the branch which is a good range for him. And depending on your fixture make sure that there is not a plastic piece covering the bulb on the bottom. There is a fixture that has this which is why I am mentioning it. I can't tell which one your using.

Yeah unfortunately the Vit A plus is just a bit too intense for long term use. Do not let the vet give him any more vitamin shots... he needs to get the levels reduced. Try to encourage drinking, it won't help flush all the supplements but it will help flush the water soluble ones. If your weather allows for it once he is feeling a bit better get him outside for real sun. Just ensure temps are not too hot.

Like I said this will not be an overnight change, it will take some time. Hopefully after a few weeks you will see him become a bit more alert. I would love for you to keep me updated though. :)
Okay I will move his branches today. There is no plastic piece covering the UVB bulb thankfully.

I will continue to encourage drinking and will be giving him a hornworm today. The weather is starting to warm up where I am so hopefully I will get him outside soon.

I will definitely keep you updated as I have been very stressed and concerned about him. My reptiles are my world!

Thank you again! 😊
 

Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Okay I will move his branches today. There is no plastic piece covering the UVB bulb thankfully.

I will continue to encourage drinking and will be giving him a hornworm today. The weather is starting to warm up where I am so hopefully I will get him outside soon.

I will definitely keep you updated as I have been very stressed and concerned about him. My reptiles are my world!

Thank you again! 😊
Oh also with your Veiled... This would be what you would want for UVB as well. And for his supplements this would be what I would do for him as well.
Your welcome. I really hope the little man starts feeling better soon.
 

Klyde O'Scope

Chameleon Enthusiast
I think he is getting far too much supplementation.
I don't disagree with this, but I believe something would have shown up on the blood work.

The bulb is a 5.0 UVB and was replaced a month ago, I replace every 6 months because I do not own a solarmeter.
If it's a T5, those bulbs should be good for a year.

From Reptile Magazine (2009) and Solameter.com by DR. FRANCES M. BAINES, MA, VETMB, MRCVS
UVB fluorescent tubes produce diffuse, low levels of UVB resembling outdoor shade on a sunny day. They emit less visible light than other bulb types. These tubes are suitable for supplying UVB to species that do not bask in sunlight, such as some forest shade-dwellers, or for small enclosures where the heat from mercury vapor lamps would cause problems with the thermal gradient. Always combine them with a better visible-light source. Quality tubes emit light with a UV Index between about 0.5 and 1.0 (sunlight in the tropics before 7:30 a.m.) at 12 inches (the usual maximum
distance suggested), and they need to be replaced every year.
 

Mendez

Avid Member
I agree with @Beman that you are over supplementing.

In addition to what has already been said, your cage looks really dark. Despite having all the equipment recommended, proper cage brightness is often overlooked by most care guides. Try looking into grow lights (not sure of good brands in the UK but Sansi is a good brand here in the U.S).

You need to increase the humidity, and you need to give him more real plants to hide behind. Live plants will help you achieve proper humidity levels:
Humidity - ~60-70% humidity after misting, ~30-40% otherwise
A panther should never get close to 30-40% humidity. Your veiled may appreciate the humidity levels this low but it will stress out your panther. Your daytime humidity should be around 50-60% during the day and 75% or higher at night. Low humidity levels can be stressful.
To fix this issue:
1) Get a bunch of live plants. This will increase the humidity levels and also stabilize them so the fluctuations are not as drastic.
2) Wrap shower curtains around three sides of the enclosure to help retain humidity.
3) Mist and fog through out the night. If your veiled is hooked up to the same system, he will enjoy the added humidity (at night) as well.


I can review the rest of your husbandry caresheet later this afternoon when I get more time. Sorry for any typos, got to go.
 
I agree with @Beman that you are over supplementing.

In addition to what has already been said, your cage looks really dark. Despite having all the equipment recommended, proper cage brightness is often overlooked by most care guides. Try looking into grow lights (not sure of good brands in the UK but Sansi is a good brand here in the U.S).

You need to increase the humidity, and you need to give him more real plants to hide behind. Live plants will help you achieve proper humidity levels:

A panther should never get close to 30-40% humidity. Your veiled may appreciate the humidity levels this low but it will stress out your panther. Your daytime humidity should be around 50-60% during the day and 75% or higher at night. Low humidity levels can be stressful.
To fix this issue:
1) Get a bunch of live plants. This will increase the humidity levels and also stabilize them so the fluctuations are not as drastic.
2) Wrap shower curtains around three sides of the enclosure to help retain humidity.
3) Mist and fog through out the night. If your veiled is hooked up to the same system, he will enjoy the added humidity (at night) as well.


I can review the rest of your husbandry caresheet later this afternoon when I get more time. Sorry for any typos, got to go.
Thanks for the input!

The darkness in the picture may be because of the way I took the picture because there are 2 other windows in the room he is in. A grow light is something I have been wanting to invest in for the future live plants though, are they any brands or products you recommend?

I have a pothos and a spider plant that I will add to his enclosure once I cover the soil (so there isn't a chance that he will eat it). I do have 3 sides covered with a shower curtain.

A fogger is something else that I have been wanting to buy for them as well, but haven't because I am limited on outlets. I will move some things around and make space for it though!
 
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Klyde O'Scope

Chameleon Enthusiast
The darkness in the picture may be because of the way I took the picture because there are 2 other windows in the room he is in.
Don't sweat that; it's a function of the light meters in digital cameras.

A grow light is something I have been wanting to invest in for the future live plants though, are they any brands or products you recommend?
From previous comments, I'm a little confused about where you are.
If in the US, check out: https://www.sansiled.com/70w-led-grow-light-full-spectrum.html
You can get it for less with coupons: https://www.google.com/search?client=firefox-b-1-d&q=sansi+coupons

If in the UK, Sansi does have a UK site, but the 70W grow light above is not on it. I don't find it on Amazon.co.uk either. Perhaps if you contacted Sansi UK...
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Queen
You said..."My vet recommended that vitamin A plus for him since he seemed to have a vitamin A deficiency due to previous eye and tongue issues"...tongue and eye issues aren't always from hypovitaminosis A. There can be other issues cussing both of them.
 
Don't sweat that; it's a function of the light meters in digital cameras.


From previous comments, I'm a little confused about where you are.
If in the US, check out: https://www.sansiled.com/70w-led-grow-light-full-spectrum.html
You can get it for less with coupons: https://www.google.com/search?client=firefox-b-1-d&q=sansi+coupons

If in the UK, Sansi does have a UK site, but the 70W grow light above is not on it. I don't find it on Amazon.co.uk either. Perhaps if you contacted Sansi UK...
I am in Pennsylvania, USA. Thanks!
 
You said..."My vet recommended that vitamin A plus for him since he seemed to have a vitamin A deficiency due to previous eye and tongue issues"...tongue and eye issues aren't always from hypovitaminosis A. There can be other issues cussing both of them.
Thanks for the reply. Yes I agree. I cannot remember what else led my vet to the conclusion of a vitamin A deficiency as that diagnosis was made in July of last year, and I had only had Julian in my care for about a month at the time. I believe one of the other reasons is because he had not been receiving any vitamin A supplement from my aunt for well over a year, just calcium with D3 with every feeding which was also not correct. ☹
 

MissSkittles

Chameleon Enthusiast
I don't disagree with this, but I believe something would have shown up on the blood work.


If it's a T5, those bulbs should be good for a year.

From Reptile Magazine (2009) and Solameter.com by DR. FRANCES M. BAINES, MA, VETMB, MRCVS
It would have depended on which blood test they ran. Standard they would perhaps do a CBC and a CMP, neither of which would be testing for vitamin levels, although blood calcium is in the CMP.
Without a solarmeter, ReptiSun bulbs needs to be replaced every 6 months to ensure adequacy. While some with solarmeters have checked the UVI and found the bulbs to still be fine, it would be better to play it safe and replace it if you aren’t able to confirm UVB output. Arcadia bulbs are good for a year.
 
It would have depended on which blood test they ran. Standard they would perhaps do a CBC and a CMP, neither of which would be testing for vitamin levels, although blood calcium is in the CMP.
Without a solarmeter, ReptiSun bulbs needs to be replaced every 6 months to ensure adequacy. While some with solarmeters have checked the UVI and found the bulbs to still be fine, it would be better to play it safe and replace it if you aren’t able to confirm UVB output. Arcadia bulbs are good for a year.
Thanks for the reply!

Yes I have ReptiSun bulbs and read in multiple places that it is safer to replace every 6 months, would rather be safe than sorry!

As for the blood test, I personally don't know how to interpret what is shown so any advice on the data is much appreciated!
 

MissSkittles

Chameleon Enthusiast
I’ve no clue how to interpret his lab results...maybe someone else does. It is just a CBC though which checks the red & white blood cells and platelets. While it can detect things like anemia, possible infection and blood related problems, it doesn’t check organ function or vitamin/mineral levels.
Next time you replace your uvb bulb, go with Arcadia 6%...cost is similar and it lasts twice as long.
 

Klyde O'Scope

Chameleon Enthusiast
Without a solarmeter, ReptiSun bulbs needs to be replaced every 6 months to ensure adequacy. While some with solarmeters have checked the UVI and found the bulbs to still be fine, it would be better to play it safe and replace it if you aren’t able to confirm UVB output. Arcadia bulbs are good for a year.

IDK why people insist on perpetuating that misinformation. The six month replacement applies ONLY to T8 bulbs. BOTH Reptisun and Arcadia T5s are warrantied for one year, BOTH are made in Germany, and the article I cited by Dr. Frances Barnes confirms this, and by publishing it on their site, Solarmeter concurs as well.

Reptile Lighting Information - Solarmeter.com


The same information is presented here in a different article from 2017:
https://www.reptilesmagazine.com/an-in-depth-look-at-uv-light-and-its-proper-use-with-reptiles/

From: https://reptileslounge.com/products...-5-0-uvb-replacement-bulb?variant=31634022536
Zoo Med's [Reptisun] linear fluorescent UVB lamps are made of the finest UVB transmitting quartz glass from Germany, with beneficial UVB emissions lasting a full twelve months!

From: https://www.beardeddragon.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=34&t=210715
Without taking actual solarmeter readings of your bulbs output there's no way to know for sure when to replace your bulb. But to err on the safe side most will recommend changing a T8 bulb every 6 months and a T5 bulb every year.
The consensus is that they do lose output over time. This may happen at different rates with different bulbs. 6mo for the T8 and 12mo for the T5 or MVB is a good rule of thumb that errs on the cautious side.

From: https://www.thebiodude.com/blogs/re...erpetology-sources/introduction-to-uvb-part-2
(But written by Reptifiles)
Linear fluorescent UVB bulbs

Linear fluorescents come in two types: T8 and T5 HO. The number indicates the diameter of the fluorescent tube, as well as the power.
  • T8 bulbsare older technology and produce less powerful UVB. They also tend to have shorter lifespans, lasting about 6 months before needing to be replaced.
  • T5 HO (high output) bulbs are a newer technology and produce stronger UVB that penetrates further into an enclosure. They also last at least 12 months before needing replacement.

https://www.reptileadvisor.com/bearded-dragon-lighting/
T8 fixtures burn out quicker, usually around 6 months. T5 bulbs can last up to a year

My own experience concurs as well. My Reptisun is now 15 months old—12 hrs per day—with no appreciable degradation as measured by Solarmeter 6.5
 
IDK why people insist on perpetuating that misinformation. The six month replacement applies ONLY to T8 bulbs. BOTH Reptisun and Arcadia T5s are warrantied for one year, BOTH are made in Germany, and the article I cited by Dr. Frances Barnes confirms this, and by publishing it on their site, Solarmeter concurs as well.

Reptile Lighting Information - Solarmeter.com


The same information is presented here in a different article from 2017:
https://www.reptilesmagazine.com/an-in-depth-look-at-uv-light-and-its-proper-use-with-reptiles/

From: https://reptileslounge.com/products...-5-0-uvb-replacement-bulb?variant=31634022536


From: https://www.beardeddragon.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=34&t=210715



From: https://www.thebiodude.com/blogs/re...erpetology-sources/introduction-to-uvb-part-2
(But written by Reptifiles)


https://www.reptileadvisor.com/bearded-dragon-lighting/


My own experience concurs as well. My Reptisun is now 15 months old—12 hrs per day—with no appreciable degradation as measured by Solarmeter 6.5
Ah okay, thank you for the sources. This is nice to hear! When I had first adopted my veiled I accidentally bought a T8 bulb and maybe that is why the 6 months has been engrained in my mind. Thankfully I realized my mistake quickly and replaced it with a T5.
 

Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
I don't disagree with this, but I believe something would have shown up on the blood work.


If it's a T5, those bulbs should be good for a year.

From Reptile Magazine (2009) and Solameter.com by DR. FRANCES M. BAINES, MA, VETMB, MRCVS
No, in fact Vitamin levels do not show up on the blood work. It is exactly what @MissSkittles said.

Per the bulbs... Hobby standard is 6 months for a reptisun and 12 months for Arcadia. Unless you have a solarmeter 6.5 to check UVI levels and the reduction in bulb strength.
 
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