Cham first aid advice needed, no time!

Zanish

New Member
Forgive me for not searching a lot, I just don't have time now, bit of an emergency.I am at a friends house, we both recently bought chameleons. to the point...His outslast's cham is not doing well, its very very weak. I don't believe it's from husbandry, because he told me it was semi-attacked by a hawk while he had it sunning outside today. The hawk swooped down, but only impacted the cham, knocked him for a serious loop to the ground. ( he was absolutely fine until this happened) The birdt hit him so hard, or the ground?? that when my friend ran and grabbed him, it had a WORM hanging out of its butt-vent. He removed this worm, which was HUGE (outslast's cham is quite large also) He checked for visible damage, only has a very tiny small scrape on head & elbow, all limbs work, no visible broken bones or bleading wounds ...and returned the cham to its enclosure. Since, it has ALMOST fallen of it's branch a few time, and seems to be geting weaker and weaker. Breaths are very very very long between, and very exagerated with a puuuuuuf sound!.....he still tries to grasp at the branches, barely, but he is soooo weak, he has slipped to hang underneath a few times, Since getting here I've already had to help him upright twice, he falls over, and half hangs on with 2 arms, and gives up on trying to get back up without help. I'm going to haul butt to the 24 hr store and try to buy some pedialyte, when I get back, I will check here for any advice or links to other threads with some good first aid, in hopefully getting him just to take breaths more often, & not want to "give up" cause thats what it seems... I know you'll all ask for a description of husbandry, I'll say its good, tube light, heat lamp, ect, it all looks absolutely awesome, he really broke the bank on the set-up. (more details when i return and begin first aid -all i know is pedialyte soak 50-50) be back in about 30 mins or less i hope. please help, please advise.... I'm OUTA HEARE!! HOPE NO COPS, CUASE THIS will be a speed record... brb & ty PLZ help me save this cham, it's 8 hours till any vet is open.
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Ok, I'm back, and cham is soaking in 1/2 inch of 50/50 solution of not cold but not hot or too warm RO pure water/ Flavorless pedialyte. When I returned to see him in cage, I saw him taking one of those exagerated breaths, but he had not falled /slid sideways of his branch, & seemed to have regained 5% more grip strenght, he had enough strength to make one feeble attempt to walk out of the soak, but when I helped him get nowhere, he gave up fast, and relaxed sitting in the solution. Been there 5 mins or so, and already seem to notice some color returning, not much, but he was all white before, now I am barely make out some white patches, which means he is darkening just a tiny bit. Eyes remain closed.
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Was a happy cham until this trauma, so doubt husbandry is playing a role

Husbandry:6ft wide x 2 ft deep x 5ft tall - all pet screen - custom
4ft HO t5 ubv ( have UBV meter also)
150watt red heat lamp - basking branch @ 98-100f
160watt merc-vap heat/ubv to create an additional basking spot @ 92f ( keeping correct distance from bulb )
custom fogger set at 55-60% on heat hum controller
100 watt day-blue bulb on heat-hum controler set on 80F / attemps a substantial drop at night, but only drops to 72-75 at coldest
ambient temps and several branched to offer any gradient of heat or ubv
auto-misting system, 1/2 gallon drippers x 2 & 36in drip vine with hand carved tiny indentions in 2 branches meant to catch some water (and he mists by hand sometimes, says cham will also drink from a cat nipple bottle when offered? And even shoot fruit/veg if held by the tongs, and happily devour whatever he is offered in the tongs LMAO!)
ficus, umbreall, pothos
Arcadia t5 plant pro, 6.5k (4ft)
 
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cswan19

New Member
Don't know what to say except Your Cham is in my thoughts and prayers. Hope all ends well. Good luck!
 

Zanish

New Member
Update, he's back on a branch, enclosure lights are off, still only seldom exagerated breaths, but more color is returning the white spots seem much more visible. He has not fallen off the branch since i returned, so, this is some improvement, but def not out of danger yet. Soak went well, about 15-20 mins. Improvement is minimal, but noticable. Opened eyes to see who was picking him up from the soak! that was great.! I'm going to stay here a bit longer with him, try offering some 50/50 solution via the cat-nipple dropper, if he refuses, i'm not sure if i should attemp to aggrivate him enough to open his mouth in anger and sneak in a few drops, I seem to think that stress is the culprit here, and don't know if the added stress & negative effects it may cause to open his mouth is worth the advantage of getting in a few drops in his mouth, I just don't know, so for now, I'll leave him & see if he remains stable before attempting any force-anything really. I believe i can see a broken rib, scott (my friend & the owner) says that this bump on his side where one of his rib bones is, is definately new, and has to be from the events today. I'm still waiting for any additional advice from anyone awake at this hour....on how to just keep him from "giving up" on life....how to improve his aspiration (breathing) He seems to go forever without taking a breath, and when he does, he tils his head directly upwards, and exhales HUGELY...( body curls a bit & can see stringy saliva spit in his mouth) then he takes a single deep breath, and holds it soooooo long...seemed like forever, but might be getting more frequent, hard to tell they are so long apart. If anyone knows how to keep him interested in living, keep him wanting to breath & hold on to the branches and fight to stay alive, let me know. I hope he's fighting now, its just how he is breathing that really worries me. Any opinions, experience, or advice is welcome, still has another 6 -7 hours until any vet is open. There is an emergency vet about 75 miles. Unfortunately I have used this vet once at about 3am...and it cost me almost 800 bucks, so I can't blame Scott (owner) for wanting to wait till the local vet is open for $90 visit, as long as it seems he is hanging on anyways. Personally, If it was Panantukan, I'd likely be driving 75 miles cause i'm a moron.
 
Sounds like the poor guy has really bad respiratory infection , he def needs to see a vet , obviously he also has parasites and that needs to be treated also ..good luck hope he will be ok
 

AngieL

Avid Member
The hawk attack could have seriously damaged him and stressed him out. Both impact and stress related injuries can be fatal so you need to see a vet look for and broken bones and internal damage caused by the fall.
 

carol5208

Chameleon Enthusiast
First off I wish you could have read my thread "OMG Hawk Encounter"! I too had a run in with a Hawk a few years ago but I aborted the attack as the Hawk swooped in! I never leave my chameleons unattended outside without being caged. I actually was sitting right there when it happened but was crouched down in a chair and the hawk apparently didn't see me. Anyways, mine had a happy ending. I think your chameleon got the shock of its life and a possible injury from the hawk or fall. I am not sure why you are trying to force pedialyte into it? It is not dehydrated, correct? You said he is healthy? So why are you doing that? I would observe him and if he still does not seem normal to you, the best advice is get him to a vet. And definitely have a fecal done for parasites if you saw a worm! Also, what was the purpose of soaking him? Wouldn't that cause more undo added stress?
 
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Zanish

New Member
I know its been some time, I've been super busy. I just wanted to let anyone know that the cham is fine now. We kept him interested in living long enough to see a vet. I personally have not seen him recently, but spoke to my friend today, & cham is back to his normal self. Scary, wanting to help, and not knowing/having the supplies or knowledge...but luckily we seemed to have done enough and thats all that matters this time...definately need a first aid kit for these guys. the wild things that happen...you never know.
 
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