Bad news

So last night my older chameleon Charlie passed away. I'm very upset about this and I don't want to see my other chameleon, his son Bloo, go down the same path. I feel as though I have been taking equal care of both of them if not even favoring Charlie because he seemed to be falling ill so quickly while Bloo stayed healthy. Long story short, Charlie began to stop eating or drinking and I'm not sure why this was. I would spend countless hours trying to get him to drink anything. I would take him outside to get some sun and the natural heat. I'm just very upset and I don't know where I went wrong. The photos below are just a few months ago when he was still eating and drinking.

Edit: I was delusional in thinking I had more time. I was just hoping he would make it until the vet appointment.
 

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alphakenc

Chameleon Enthusiast
Please don't be delusional...the time is now..we would like to know more about the living environment on the Bloo just to prevent bad thing happened again.
In the meantime...here is to your Charlie....
A Thousand words won't bring him(Charlie) back;
I know because you've tried.
Neither will a Thousand tears;
I know because I've cried....
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I have some photos of things i used/have and I'll just attach those here. I gut load my super mainly with just potatoes and occasionally some lettuce or fruit for hydration but primarily cut up potatoes. I have the linear uva/uvb reptisun lightbulb and I have/had a dripper for both of them as well as a basking light for each. Charlie's diet would mainly consist of super worms and sometimes wax flies/moths. I live in Florida so I like to have them outside as much as I can so they can get the natural sunlight.

I should probably add that when I received Charlie he was around 3.5 yrs old and he would now have been around 4.5yrs old. I know it is still on the young side but I was wonder if his age would have been a factor in his declining health?

He slowly went from eating 5-6 supers down to 3-4 then 2-3 until he lost interest in eating all together. The same thing was happening with his water intake yet he still loved his showers.


I have a photo of his enclose I'll add but it is a little outdated, I've added more foliage and i need to change some of the plants, but it can give you an idea of what he was living in.

Bloo and Charlie had(s) the same/similar type of living conditions and yet his (Bloo) health seems to stay the same. Also Bloo's intake of food and water has stayed the same if not increased.
 

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Carlton

Chameleon Enthusiast
Sorry you lost him! Actually Charlie was getting up toward being an oldster. If you didn't have any information on his prior care there may have been something missing nutritionally...you might have inherited a subtle problem. There was probably something going on that just caught up with him. Chams hide their health issues until they are acute...a defensive adaptation. Without a necropsy you'll never know exactly what it was.

You can definitely improve your feeder gutloading and diversify Bloo's diet. Missing micronutrients could have played into a shorter lifespan for Charlie. How much of the time did they spend outdoors in "real" sunlight? How often do you change out your UVB bulbs? They lose a lot of their UV production after about 6 months. If they ended up spending the majority of their time indoors that could matter.
 
Sorry you lost him! Actually Charlie was getting up toward being an oldster. If you didn't have any information on his prior care there may have been something missing nutritionally...you might have inherited a subtle problem. There was probably something going on that just caught up with him. Chams hide their health issues until they are acute...a defensive adaptation. Without a necropsy you'll never know exactly what it was.

You can definitely improve your feeder gutloading and diversify Bloo's diet. Missing micronutrients could have played into a shorter lifespan for Charlie. How much of the time did they spend outdoors in "real" sunlight? How often do you change out your UVB bulbs? They lose a lot of their UV production after about 6 months. If they ended up spending the majority of their time indoors that could matter.
When I do get the chance to take them outside I like to have them outside for a minimum of 30min preferably an hour if the weather prohibits. I got them both new bulbs a few months after I got them but I should look into getting some replacement bulbs its probably getting close to the 6month mark. I offer(ed) my chats discoid roaches, hornworms, silk worms, crickets, supers, and wax worms/moths but they seem to go after the cricket, supers, and waxies over the roaches or hornworms. I still try to get them to eat the hornworms for the nutrition and sometimes they would eat them and others they didn't even look at it.
 

jamest0o0

Chameleon Enthusiast
I'm sorry to hear this, but as mentioned there are some things you could do a bit better to improve your other cham's life.

What you're "gutloading" could barely be considered gutload. Potatoes and lettuce are very poor sources of nutrients, they should be getting a variety of dark leafy greens, papaya, little fruit, some seeds, bee pollen,etc(there are lists on here to check out). The idea is to mix it up, a person that ate only potatoes and lettuce would be malnourished too.

Superworms and waxworms are a poor diet and neither hold much in their gut to begin with. Supers are high in fat, while crickets and roaches are high in protein. They are ignoring the roaches because you're spoiling them the worms. They'll hunger strike for them and refuse other feeders, this is common. Superworms should be fed about once a week, waxworms even less.

I don't use repashy, so I'm not sure if it has preformed vitamin A, but if not I'd be giving a *preformed* vitamin A source 1-2x a month. I personally use the retinol vitamin A gel caps once a month. I dip one feeder, usually a superworm in the liquid after breaking the cap open and feed it off.

Also your cage could use many more branches
 
I'm sorry to hear this, but as mentioned there are some things you could do a bit better to improve your other cham's life.

What you're "gutloading" could barely be considered gutload. Potatoes and lettuce are very poor sources of nutrients, they should be getting a variety of dark leafy greens, papaya, little fruit, some seeds, bee pollen,etc(there are lists on here to check out). The idea is to mix it up, a person that ate only potatoes and lettuce would be malnourished too.

Superworms and waxworms are a poor diet and neither hold much in their gut to begin with. Supers are high in fat, while crickets and roaches are high in protein. They are ignoring the roaches because you're spoiling them the worms. They'll hunger strike for them and refuse other feeders, this is common. Superworms should be fed about once a week, waxworms even less.

I don't use repashy, so I'm not sure if it has preformed vitamin A, but if not I'd be giving a *preformed* vitamin A source 1-2x a month. I personally use the retinol vitamin A gel caps once a month. I dip one feeder, usually a superworm in the liquid after breaking the cap open and feed it off.

Also your cage could use many more branches
I’m planning on upgrading his enclosure, I’m not sure if you saw where I stayed that the photo posted is old and I have added more foliage since that photo. I will have to look at those gutload lists and so should I mainly focus on feeding crickets and a variety of worms; horn, wax, supers, silk but with crickets being the staple? The vitamins/supplements I use are the ones that the breeder insisted I use and those specifically but I can look Into the vitamin A as well.
 

jamest0o0

Chameleon Enthusiast
I’m planning on upgrading his enclosure, I’m not sure if you saw where I stayed that the photo posted is old and I have added more foliage since that photo. I will have to look at those gutload lists and so should I mainly focus on feeding crickets and a variety of worms; horn, wax, supers, silk but with crickets being the staple? The vitamins/supplements I use are the ones that the breeder insisted I use and those specifically but I can look Into the vitamin A as well.
Thank you for gracefully taking advice. I know it sucks to lose an animal and didn't want to come off hard on you. Just trying to help you fix up a few things (y).

You're right, I missed that part where you said that about the cage. Sorry about that. But yeah with the feeders, gutloaded and dusted(lightly) crickets and roaches make a great staple. Silk worms can be fed more often as well. Hornworms are basically just water, which are great for hydration. Black soldier fly larvae are nutritious, full of calcium and don't need dusted. Superworms and waxworms fed sparingly. IME waxworms gutload off honey and bee pollen. Bsfl like anything mushy enough to burrow into. Supers/crx/roaches accept pretty much anything(make sure it's nutritious though). I'm not too familiar with repashy. Do you know if it uses preformed vitamin A(retinol) or beta carotene?
 
Thank you for gracefully taking advice. I know it sucks to lose an animal and didn't want to come off hard on you. Just trying to help you fix up a few things (y).

You're right, I missed that part where you said that about the cage. Sorry about that. But yeah with the feeders, gutloaded and dusted(lightly) crickets and roaches make a great staple. Silk worms can be fed more often as well. Hornworms are basically just water, which are great for hydration. Black soldier fly larvae are nutritious, full of calcium and don't need dusted. Superworms and waxworms fed sparingly. IME waxworms gutload off honey and bee pollen. Bsfl like anything mushy enough to burrow into. Supers/crx/roaches accept pretty much anything(make sure it's nutritious though). I'm not too familiar with repashy. Do you know if it uses preformed vitamin A(retinol) or beta carotene?
I hope this photo can answer some of your questions
 

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alphakenc

Chameleon Enthusiast
I received Charlie he was around 3.5 yrs old and he would now have been around 4.5yrs old
Pretty much u got a lot of great advice from everyone...
My thoughts with Charlie could it be he went from his previous owner enclosures environment (at his 3.5 yrs old ages) the moving process that give him some stress n unfortunately leads to the awful bad news like this post title....
At least Bloo will be under your care n his life journey will begin through all your preparation n the new learning process day by day.
 
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