Baby chameleon hiding

PrincessSpaz

New Member
My daughter has a baby veiled chameleon that she got a week ago from PetSmart (so no idea on age) ... PetSmart said Spaz was a male but no spurs so I'm assuming he is actually a she.
Her name is Spaz because she is typically bouncing around her house nonstop until it's bedtime (when her night light gets turned on) then she goes to sleep and stays asleep until her day lights come on (dual bulb fixture with zoo med UV A and B/heat) ... for some reason Spaz thinks when her door opens, it's time to climb out to play with her favorite human so she's normally very social. Until today.
Yesterday we replaced her bulbs and she went to sleep much earlier than usual. Today she's been hanging out mid cage, hiding, didn't eat anything offered (crickets and waxworms, nothing appealed to her) and hasn't wanted to play
Until I can locate a more suitable sandbox, she has a cup large enough that she can tunnel in (thought maybe she needed to lay eggs?) But she hasn't seemed interested in it
She's currently in a zoo med mesh cage (16x16x30, she's no bigger than my thumb right now) ... she has stayed mid to lower portion of her house since about 9:00 (it's currently nearly 16:00) this morning
She doesn't appear dehydrated (2 cool mist humidifiers run 24/7 creating dew droplets all day and the top leaves are misted 3-4 minutes at a time 5-6x a day) she does seem very irritated and lethargic (compared to what has been normal for her the past 7 days)
Could she be sick, starting to shed or trying to lay eggs? It's a Sunday so no vets are open here and the vets who do see chameleons are 1.5-2 hour drive away
 

PrincessSpaz

New Member
This is Spaz ... photo taken roughly 15:40 today
 

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PrincessSpaz

New Member
That is a baby. No where near egg laying. Feeders have to be no larger then 1/4 inch for baby to take them down. If cage set up is not correct this can make them hide and even search it constantly. I would start reading this husbandry program. I am willing to bet the petstore did not sell you the right stuff.
https://chameleonacademy.com/chameleon-husbandry-program-getting-started-with-chameleons/
The only difference between the past 7 days and today is the new bulbs. The bulbs I purchased yesterday are the exact same brand and wattage as the original bulbs (I'd gotten the bulbs and lamp 2nd hand) ... Spaz had been doing great (good appetite, good energy level for a baby, etc) until the new bulbs were put in. Multiple phone conversations/emailed photos with the nearest vet who sees chameleons confirmed her cage setup was correct and she just has higher energy because she's still a baby. The crickets she had been eating are smaller than 1/4 inch and have been fed a gut load block as well as various vegetables before being given to her. I put them in a plastic bag with calcium dust (not the one with D3) and shake before putting them in her bowl. She normally goes directly to her bowl as soon as her daytime lights are turned on (which she did this morning but didn't eat)
Could the new lights be too hot for her?
 

Mountain Dragon

Chameleon Enthusiast
Could you maybe fill out this form so we can help you better because it does seem like your enclosure is improperly set up we will try to help you the best we can


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.

--------------

Please Note:
  1. The more details you provide the better and more accurate help you will receive.
  2. Photos can be very helpful.
 

Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
The only difference between the past 7 days and today is the new bulbs. The bulbs I purchased yesterday are the exact same brand and wattage as the original bulbs (I'd gotten the bulbs and lamp 2nd hand) ... Spaz had been doing great (good appetite, good energy level for a baby, etc) until the new bulbs were put in. Multiple phone conversations/emailed photos with the nearest vet who sees chameleons confirmed her cage setup was correct and she just has higher energy because she's still a baby. The crickets she had been eating are smaller than 1/4 inch and have been fed a gut load block as well as various vegetables before being given to her. I put them in a plastic bag with calcium dust (not the one with D3) and shake before putting them in her bowl. She normally goes directly to her bowl as soon as her daytime lights are turned on (which she did this morning but didn't eat)
Could the new lights be too hot for her?
Sounds like you have the wrong fixture for UVB. It should be a linear fixture with long bulbs... Not screw in bulbs.

It should be like this one. https://www.amazon.com/Reptisun-T5-...28520804&sprefix=zoo+med+T5+,aps,1233&sr=8-13

This one has the 5.0 bulb for it. And then basking branch would sit 8-9 inches below with this fixture sitting on the screen.

Screw in bulbs are not recommended. They either put out far too much UVB or far too little. Both will effect the cham. Too weak of an output causes lack of appetite, sluggishness, and sleeping during the day.


I know you think your local vet knows it all. And maybe they do. But not taking advantage of the people here who actually have the hands on knowledge and are constantly learning more about the hobby is a disadvantage to you. We have had people come in and the vet did not even tell them the correct gender causing the death of a cham because it was female and eggbound and the vet told them it was a male. We have had people bake their chams because the vet told them 90 degrees was correct and it is not.

So we are trying to help you but without seeing the entire cage with the lighting and without knowing the details in the form posted above we do not have the entire picture of what is going on. Babies are more fragile and they decline and die much easier then adults with improper care.
 

Mountain Dragon

Chameleon Enthusiast
Sounds like you have the wrong fixture for UVB. It should be a linear fixture with long bulbs... Not screw in bulbs.

It should be like this one. https://www.amazon.com/Reptisun-T5-Ho-Terrarium-Hood/dp/B00CX5HXI2/ref=sr_1_13?crid=2G1QB00Y2NMT&dchild=1&keywords=zoo+med+t5+ho+reptisun+5.0&qid=1628520804&sprefix=zoo+med+T5+,aps,1233&sr=8-13

This one has the 5.0 bulb for it. And then basking branch would sit 8-9 inches below with this fixture sitting on the screen.

Screw in bulbs are not recommended. They either put out far too much UVB or far too little. Both will effect the cham. Too weak of an output causes lack of appetite, sluggishness, and sleeping during the day.


I know you think your local vet knows it all. And maybe they do. But not taking advantage of the people here who actually have the hands on knowledge and are constantly learning more about the hobby is a disadvantage to you. We have had people come in and the vet did not even tell them the correct gender causing the death of a cham because it was female and eggbound and the vet told them it was a male. We have had people bake their chams because the vet told them 90 degrees was correct and it is not.

So we are trying to help you but without seeing the entire cage with the lighting and without knowing the details in the form posted above we do not have the entire picture of what is going on. Babies are more fragile and they decline and die much easier then adults with improper care.
Agree
 

PrincessSpaz

New Member
Did you buy a different brand or type of UVB light? Which one did you have and which one did you buy?
Did you buy a new basking light? Which one did you have and which one did you buy?
I looked at the original bulbs and purchased the exact same brand and wattage because I was worried a different brand/wattage would be too much or not enough for her
These are what I purchased
 

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Mountain Dragon

Chameleon Enthusiast
I looked at the original bulbs and purchased the exact same brand and wattage because I was worried a different brand/wattage would be too much or not enough for her
These are what I purchased
So these aren’t the best bulbs for chameleons you need a linear but another memember will help you more bc I’m not as experienced
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Queen
Either the long linear reptisun 5.0 or an Arcadia long linear 6% UVB light would be the one you need. For basking the light should be a white light...a regular household incandescent light bulb is the best for basking. Wattage should be whatever makes the basking temperature in the right range.
 

ERKleRose

Chameleon Enthusiast
I looked at the original bulbs and purchased the exact same brand and wattage because I was worried a different brand/wattage would be too much or not enough for her
These are what I purchased
So you'll want to get a plain white light incandescent bulb for basking (if you can find one at the hardware store, they're usually cheaper and last longer). The UVB you need is a T5 High Output linear fixture and bulb (either Arcadia 6% or Zoo Med ReptiSun 5.0), preferably as long as the biggest cage she'll be in). As @Beman said, you'll want 8-9" from bulb to branch. Since she's still a baby, you'll want to raise the T5HO fixture so the bulb is 4" above the top of the cage. You'll want the basking branch 5" below the top of the cage, too. The same distance is needed for her heat bulb. You'll use a digital thermometer with probe, with the probe placed where the top of her back is when she's on her basking branch, to measure her basking temp. It should be 78-80*F there for her whole life.
 
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