Beer Belly (or rather, Dubia Belly)

extrajordinary

Established Member
So for the past couple weeks I've been feeding Leo a combination of crickets and dubias with some hornworms thrown in every so often...and I'm worried he's beginning to develop a "beer belly," but I'm not sure if I'm just worrying too much. My boyfriend says he's fine, but he looks a little bloated to me. I've attached some photos I took this evening right before his bed time. Does his belly look normal or does it look a little big towards the bottom?
 

Attachments

extrajordinary

Established Member
Ah! I was still filling out the form! Here's all the information on Leo and his cage:

Chameleon Info:

Your Chameleon - The species, sex, and age of your chameleon. How long has it been in your care? Veiled, male, approximately 11 months old. I’ve had him since October 2018.

Handling - How often do you handle your chameleon? I handled him quite a bit a week ago, but I haven’t touched him this past week.

Feeding - What are you feeding your cham? What amount? What is the schedule? How are you gut-loading your feeders? I’ve been feeding him 3-5 dubia roaches or 10 small crickets (the store was out of large crickets the last time we bought crickets). One day he got about 10 small crickets and 2 dubia roaches. The dubia roaches are medium. He’s also had several hornworms this past week. I feed him every other day, between 5:30 and 6:30 in the morning. He also munches the plants (a ficus, pothos, and corn plant) in his enclosure quite a bit. He’s eaten a few fuschia flowers this weekend too. Crickets eat carrots and dandelion leaves. The hornworms eat what came in their container.

Supplements - What brand and type of calcium and vitamin products are you dusting your feeders with and what is the schedule? I dust his feeders with Repticalcium without D3 at every feeding. I dust his feeders with Repticalcium with D3 and a multivitamin every 2 weeks.

Watering - What kind of watering technique do you use? How often and how long to you mist? Do you see your chameleon drinking? I have a MistKing that goes off at 5:00 a.m. for 1 minute, 9:30 a.m. for 1.5 minutes and 1:30 p.m. for 1 minute. I also have a fogger that runs from 1 a.m. to 3 a.m. I spray the plants in his cage in addition to the MistKing and the fogger because some are out of reach of the MistKing. I don’t see him drinking.

Fecal Description - Briefly note colours and consistency from recent droppings. Has this chameleon ever been tested for parasites? He was tested earlier this month and the vet said he didn’t have any parasites. His last poop was a couple days ago. It was brown and solid, and the urates were white.

History - Any previous information about your cham that might be useful to others when trying to help you. I got him from FL Chams at 2-3 months of age. He was weighed at the vet a couple weeks ago and he weighed 116 grams.

Cage Info:

Cage Type - Describe your cage. What are the dimensions? Rehabbed cabinet. The top and front doors are screen, the sides are glass, and the back is a faux rock wall. It measures roughly 14” W x 44” H x 31.5” L.

Lighting - What brand, model, and types of lighting are you using? What is your daily lighting schedule? UVB is a Reptisun 10.0 and the heat source is a regular light bulb. 100 watts, I believe. Lights come on at 5:30 a.m. and go off around 6:30 p.m. Leo’s cage is near a north facing window, so he still gets some light after his lights go off. The sun sets around 8:30 p.m. currently, so it’s not completely dark until then.

Temperature - What temp range have you created (cage floor to basking spot)? Lowest overnight temp? How do you measure these temps? His basking spot is 90-95 degrees Fahrenheit. I don’t know what his other temps are. I’ve been meaning to pick up another thermometer or two. I use an analog thermometer.

Humidity - What are your humidity levels? How are you creating and maintaining these levels? What do you use to measure humidity? I use an analog hygrometer to measure the humidity levels. After the MistKing runs, humidity is usually around 70%. Right this second, humidity is at 65%. The lowest I’ve seen it drop to in the past few weeks is 45-50%. I’m not sure what it is at night, though.

Plants - Are you using live plants? If so, what kind? Yes. There are 2 pothos vines, 3 air plants, a small ficus, and a corn plant.

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? His cage is located in the office. There’s a ceiling fan, but we never turn it on. There’s an air vent on the same wall as his cage. The office doesn’t see much traffic, from us or the cats, which is why we chose to put his cage there. The cats’ litter box is in the office, but they pay Leo no attention whatsoever. The top of the cage is about 6’ off the ground.

Location - Where are you geographically located? I live in Chicago.

Current Problem - The current problem you are concerned about. I’m worried I’ve overfed him these past few weeks. If I have, I would like to know what steps I need to take moving forward to correct this.
 

Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Ok so I have the weight issue with Beman... But I think we all forget that they have a range of sizes anywhere from 17-24 inches tip of nose to tail. We all get caught up in the weight but... If you have one that is say 16 inches and 115 grams then that is not bad. Genetics play into this as well. They also continue to grow past the 1 year mark. Not by leaps and bounds but they do still grow.
At this age you do want to be on an every other day feeding cycle. equivalent of 7 large crickets worth. So just make sure when you feed your variety that they all are about what would equal 7 large crickets. :)

And your husbandry looks wonderful. Just watch those daytime humidity levels. Really want to have those between 30-50% max... Did you listen to this podcast yet? https://www.chameleonbreeder.com/podcast/ep-89-naturalistic-hydration-for-chameleons/

Sorry I have been in crazy land the last few days.
 

CamoChameleonsHuman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Ok so I have the weight issue with Beman... But I think we all forget that they have a range of sizes anywhere from 17-24 inches tip of nose to tail. We all get caught up in the weight but... If you have one that is say 16 inches and 115 grams then that is not bad. Genetics play into this as well. They also continue to grow past the 1 year mark. Not by leaps and bounds but they do still grow.
At this age you do want to be on an every other day feeding cycle. equivalent of 7 large crickets worth. So just make sure when you feed your variety that they all are about what would equal 7 large crickets. :)

And your husbandry looks wonderful. Just watch those daytime humidity levels. Really want to have those between 30-50% max... Did you listen to this podcast yet? https://www.chameleonbreeder.com/podcast/ep-89-naturalistic-hydration-for-chameleons/

Sorry I have been in crazy land the last few days.
Thank you Beman. And yes I think we all have. It's been Cham Crazy on the forums lately!
 

JoXie411

Chameleon Enthusiast
From my understanding that is where the liver is and it packs on fat. You can try feeding less and feed ever 3 days like @CamoChameleonsHuman suggested. Try building a “gym” outside the cage for him to roam on to get exercise


Sorry thought I posted this awhile ago internet was down
 

Brodybreaux25

Chameleon Enthusiast
The more I look at this the more it bothers me. The lower part of his belly should not be jutting out at such an extreme angle like that. I agree that every Cham is built slightly differently but I’ve been looking for the last thirty minutes and I can’t find another example of a male veiled with such a sharply angled belly.

The closest thing I could find is this picture of my male veiled in full display but not even he comes anywhere near what we’re looking at here. Your guys belly is twice as sharp as my guys and your guy isn’t even in a threat display. It doesn’t sound like your over feeding him and he does not appear to be obese.

I don’t know what to make of him, his behavior seems normal. Can you take him out and provide better pics?
CF315B1B-ED0D-4EF9-A3BE-CC641BAF5EF6.jpeg

B3DBEF95-1157-4E4C-896C-623267E09B2C.jpeg
 
Last edited:

extrajordinary

Established Member
The more I look at this the more it bothers me. The lower part of his belly should not be jutting out at such an extreme angle like that. I agree that every Cham is built slightly differently but I’ve been looking for the last thirty minutes and I can’t find another example of a male veiled with such a sharply angled belly.

The closest thing I could find is this picture of my male veiled in full display but not even he comes anywhere near what we’re looking at here. Your guys belly is twice as sharp as my guys and your guy isn’t even in a threat display. It doesn’t sound like your over feeding him and he does not appear to be obese.

I don’t know what to make of him, his behavior seems normal. Can you take him out and provide better pics?View attachment 233751
View attachment 233752
The angle of Leo's belly is really why I'm posting about it. It looked weird to me (even inexperienced as I am) and I wanted to be sure he's okay. Could the way he's perched on the ladder be part of it? As for another photo, he's sleeping right now so I'll try to get a better photo tomorrow morning. I haven't noticed that much of a pouch the past day or so. I looked up "chameleon anatomy" because @JoXie411 made me curious and in panther chameleons, that area appears to be a fat pad. So perhaps, assuming it's the same or at least similar in veileds, he's just put on a little fat? I honestly don't know what to make of this either. He just went to the vet and all was well and from everyone's feedback my husbandry is fine. If only Leo could talk... :unsure:
 

extrajordinary

Established Member
It absolutely could be something pushing on his belly causing the weird look. One things for sure, somethings off.
Here are a bunch of photos from this morning. Still look weird or no?
 

Attachments

extrajordinary

Established Member
I came home to the LARGEST bowel movement I have ever seen from Leo. Perhaps he was just bloated/constipated? I attached a photo of his belly tonight when he was ready for bed. Looks more normal I’d say. Also, this is the 2nd time the little booger has pooped in his feeding cup. :rolleyes:
 

Attachments

Top Bottom