Cham in bad condition!


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Well I came home and I opened the door and smoked poured out, a small fire had started in my room, I ran in with shirt over my face holding my breathe, and grabbed my huge chameleon cage not sure if he was still alive or not... I got outside with bloodshot eyes and caughing to notice he was still ALIVE! But now he isnt in good condition... not eating, not moving a whole lot.. just sleeping even during the day...I live in a small town that only see's cats and dogs! What can i do?? any way to make him eat or drink?? Im so sad to see him like this.. I think smoke got into his lungs and all ... poor guy :( :( any help would be appreciated :(

p.s I only lost my room, and all my fish .. atleast not my house..could have been alot worse!
YIKES!!! So is Fractal and THAT'S MY NIGHTMARE. What happened? Do you know what started the fire? I would expect that your guy will not eat for a few days, maybe even a week. I think it's important that you get him a huge new plant and make home for him quick... (cage adjustment time)... get some wiggly worms on dark greens (blood cleansers) and try to get him to eat by hand sometimes too. . Keep his mind occupied. Make sure a LOT of water is available dripping constantly in the awake hours. He's probably got smoke inhalation, as well as the trauma of his territory being assaulted, for lack of another way to put it. WOW. I can't believe it!!!
when did this happen? How much time have you given him to recuperate. Yes, cham lungs are a lot smaller than ours and a 4 month's old that much smaller. Can you post a pic of him?

For now, my 2 cents is to put him in a glass tank (10-20gal) with padding on the bottom (in case he falls or does not want/can't to climb). Don't use terry towels as his claws can get caught. lots of paper towel will work, in fact you can place that as a covering on some terry towels. Put in some branches so he can cliong and feel secure. Put him in a quiet, low activity area. My reason for the glass tank is to keep him secure and easier to water, feed, keep warm. Use a lower watt basking bulb, as heat will build up in glass. Mist him with a very fine mist (you can buy an small empty plastic or glass spray bottle in the cosmetic section of most drug and discount stores). Use hot water. It will cool a bit when it hits the air. Do NOT force feed or water him. chams do not have a sphincter (close-off) for their esophagus so they can easily aspirate.

Keep him warm, get humidity up a couple times/day but be sure all is dry before lights out (you may need to change the padding in order to do this) so he does not get chilled. Since his lungs and respiratory system are compromised he would be more prone to URI or other complications. See how he is in the morning and offer him a soft bodied feeder - young cricket, waxworm, silkworm).

Where do you live? You might be surprised to find a vet. Tell us city and state and someone may be able to direct you. That said, I would wait to see a vet as it will add stress unless he develops an URI. Look for stringy mucous, wheezing, gaping.

Monitor his temps carefully. Not with strip therm, use a temp gun if you have one (or buy one at for $25).

I am sure there will be other suggestions from more experienced keepers. Please keep us updated on his progress.

I am glad you did not lose your house and that no one else was hurt!
OMG! that is horrible its good that he is still alive but as for the fish and your room im terribly sorry! thats one of my biggest fears because of all the heat lamps and other electronics near the cage. Im glad hes alive and i hope the best to you!!
Well I moved him to a 20 gal tank, put his uvb and basking above it.. with a new branch in there. He got smoked out really bad, im suprised he's still alive man.. he doesnt like to open his eyes unless I really mess with him.. and sometimes only 1 of them.. is there anything I can do to help this like possibly give him a shower? He has like a somewhat black smut on his body.. I can tell its from like smoke... I feel so bad for him .. just want him to get better... gonna try to feed him in the morning. Thanks for the responses guys they help! :(
WOW... THAT SUCKS MAN... well i hope it all gets better and i know u will try your best... BEST WISHES TO YOU AND YOUR CHAM
I would try and get him in a shower - you need to get the smut off of him. I would say offer him lots of water/misting sessions and hopefully he will drink. His throat may be burned some by the smoke so I wonder if he will be off food for a bit... something like silkworms might be less irritating/painful going down.

I am sorry for your fire and the loss of your fish, etc. Glad no one was hurt and that you were able to rescue your cham..

Keep us posted.. we are hoping he gets better... :)
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Gave him a long shower but he seems to go crazy, and does NOT like it at ALL when I tried cleaning him. Hopefully he will make shedding then it will come off?? I think his eyes are in bad shape though, he cant open them very long.. opens then closes... I will try to snap a pic tommorow

p.s my zip is 32410
OMG, that's awful news - sorry to hear about your fish :(

How are you and your cham today?
What was on fire?

I have no idea how to treat a chameleon for smoke inhalation...but here are some human sites that might give you some ideas of what he must be going through... Inhalation Symptoms

In all honesty I think you should take it to a vet after reading the part about carbon monoxide and since you say he's gaping
Blue300zx2, going by your zip, you're not too far from Panama City, and there is a herp vet there. You could at least call them and see if they have any suggestions (supplemental oxygen, maybe?). People die from smoke inhalation, and I'd hate to see your cham suffer...:( I do worry what would happen if we had a fire; I'm not sure if we could get out all the warm-blooded critters, never mind the herps....:eek:
An outlet with 3 extension cords.. all with my 5 fish tanks, chameleon lights, 2 computers. Yeah imagine what that looked like.. anyways I was dumb for having so much stuff plugged in one spot and thats what they think caused it. anywho alot of plastic burned so it was real toxic i think. he's up and moving some this morning I put a few pin size crickets in there until I can go by the store today. Will the vet have something for his eyes? Im gonna try to take him today. :(
I would suggest calling Dr. Ivan Alfonso. He is in Orlando, but he specializes in chameleons. Explain what happened to whomever answers the phone and, like Will said - this IS an emergency:
Ivan Alfonso, DVM
Kirkman Area Animal Clinic
5633 Metrowest
Orlando, FL 32811
Tel: (407) 295-7547

here is one name and info from the ARAV site in Panama City, not sure if it is same that jleahl was referring to:
Sandra L.J. Barnett
607 Plantation Ct
Panama City, FL 32404

check out their FL listings as there may be another FL arav vets

keep us posted!
His poor little eyes probably got stung and are still stinging real bad. Hopefully, there is enough moisture in him to naturally cleanse them. Anyone wonder if eye solution we use could be helpful? I like the silkworm idea. Even a wax worm or two would be good right now. Soft.I like all what lele said, because of the falling thing. All I could think was that he would want to hide and heal, drinking from leaves, for a number of days, by saying put a thick new plant in there. I'm always concerned with my cham's state of mind, knowing how much that attributes to good health and in this case, healing.

I also felt bad after I logged off that I did not mention how sorry I am about your fish buddies. The whole thing really put a scare in me and I so wanted to know what started the fire.
I really feel for you. Just hang in there and I pray you cham will be all right.
Very sorry about your cham/fish/room.

I am very interested to hear what started the fire. Do you think it had anything to do with the cham setup? Too much plugged into a socket?

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