Cham not eating for a week please help

xoquinn

New Member
My 2 year old veiled chameleon hasn’t eaten anything for about a week. This is extremely unusual for him as he’s always hungry for his food everyday, he’s never not eaten. I’ve tried crickets, wax worms, and super worms. Today I called 9 different vets in 3 different states and the best any of them can do is see me in 5-6 weeks and I honestly feel like I’m watching him starve himself, he’s starting to get thinner and I’m considering force feeding some waxworms however I’m concerned this might make things worse if the issue is an impaction or something related.
I would greatly appreciate any advice, my local exotic vets seems to be unable to help and I’m worried that I am watching him starve.

Thank you,
Quinn
 

Chameleoking

Chameleon Enthusiast
Hi, welcome to the forums. Its good that you contacted a vet or several vets. It shows that you care for your little one. But don't get all stressed out just yet. That is an age that they usually start acting this way? If I may ask. What do you feed your cham and how often do you feed him?
 

xoquinn

New Member
Hi, welcome to the forums. Its good that you contacted a vet or several vets. It shows that you care for your little one. But don't get all stressed out just yet. That is an age that they usually start acting this way? If I may ask. What do you feed your cham and how often do you feed him?
He usually eats 3 crickets daily (dusted in calcium powder) and occasionally I’ll buy different worms for him. He ALWAYS has an appetite which is why I’m worried. Thank you for the response
 

xoquinn

New Member
Has he pooped lately?
Has not for a few days. Pooping and eating seem to have stopped, all other behavior is normal, when I get close he looks at me as if he’s wanting me to feed but he just hasn’t shown any interest in going for the food
 

Chameleoking

Chameleon Enthusiast
  • 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.
 

xoquinn

New Member
  • 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.
Veiled chameleon (male I think) I’ve had him for 2 years, this month.



He doesn’t like being handled, his name is ‘grumpy’ because he gets grumpy if I try to handle him which I think is more his species than him specifically



Most commonly eats 3-4 crickets daily, coated in ‘repti calcium’ , also occasionally eats wax, meal and super worms.



I spray his enclosure 2-3 times daily, the past 2 years I hardly ever see him drinking from his water bowl, however the past week he has been drinking more water I’ve noticed



I don’t think he has pooped in a few days, nothing fresh in his cage, I don’t remember it looking wrong however



A few weeks ago his vent seemed to be inflamed but it seemed to have gotten better in a few days



Cage info -



Tall screen cage ~ 3ft x 1.5ft x 1.5ft



About 65% humidity



80 degrees basking, 65-70 degrees lower in cage

(simple temp and humidity gage in his cage)



Cage is located on my bureau in my bedroom, has been there for 2 years, top of his cage is about 5ft of the floor



I’m located in Massachusetts



Thank you
 

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DonKeesh

Chameleon Enthusiast
I will let other give a more detailed review... However there are some red flags with your setup. The water dish needs to be removed ASAP. That is a breeding ground for bacteria. Also I am not seeing the correct T5 linear UVB lighting. What is your drainage solution?
 

xoquinn

New Member
I will let other give a more detailed review... However there are some red flags with your setup. The water dish needs to be removed ASAP. That is a breeding ground for bacteria. Also I am not seeing the correct T5 linear UVB lighting. What is your drainage solution?
I will let other give a more detailed review... However there are some red flags with your setup. The water dish needs to be removed ASAP. That is a breeding ground for bacteria. Also I am not seeing the correct T5 linear UVB lighting. What is your drainage solution?
I will definitely remove the water / resort back to my old drip system. I also do not have a linear uvb light. I can go to the pet store and get one after work today. thank you for the insight
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Queen
Please post a couple more photos of your chameleon so I can see his arms. I think he has some MBD....but it might just be the angle of the photo.

In addition to what's already been said...I would replace the fake plants with real well washed, both sides of the leaves, non-toxic ones. Veileds eat plant material and fake ones can lead to Impaction if ingested.

What color are the urates usually? White, or orange tinge, or really orange?
 

xoquinn

New Member
Please post a couple more photos of your chameleon so I can see his arms. I think he has some MBD....but it might just be the angle of the photo.

In addition to what's already been said...I would replace the fake plants with real well washed, both sides of the leaves, non-toxic ones. Veileds eat plant material and fake ones can lead to Impaction if ingested.

What color are the urates usually? White, or orange tinge, or really orange?
Here are some better arm photos. Urates are mostly whitish. I will look into some real leaves too
 

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Beman

Social Media Manager
Staff member
He has pretty clear signs of MBD. Need the correct linear light at the right distance to basking. Which calcium are you using with D3 or without D3?

You will need a reptile vet to assist with the MBD. Need to stop the progression. Use this link to find a reptile vet near you https://arav.site-ym.com/search/custom.asp?id=3661

I do not have time now to do a husbandry review. @MissSkittles are you able to do one?


PLease start reading this husbandry program https://chameleonacademy.com/chameleon-husbandry-program-getting-started-with-chameleons/
 

xoquinn

New Member
He has pretty clear signs of MBD. Need the correct linear light at the right distance to basking. Which calcium are you using with D3 or without D3?

You will need a reptile vet to assist with the MBD. Need to stop the progression. Use this link to find a reptile vet near you https://arav.site-ym.com/search/custom.asp?id=3661

I do not have time now to do a husbandry review. @MissSkittles are you able to do one?


PLease start reading this husbandry program https://chameleonacademy.com/chameleon-husbandry-program-getting-started-with-chameleons/
Thank you for the info, I use D3 calcium
 

Beman

Social Media Manager
Staff member
Thank you for the info, I use D3 calcium
Ok so you actually want to use calcium without D3 at almost all of your feedings and then you want a good multivitamin with D3 like Repashy calcium plus LoD version to use 2 times a month say the 1st and the 15th. Your overdosing on D3 which can make the MBD worse. Also D3 overdose can impact their appetite. It probably has not shown an issue yet just because he has the incorrect UVB lighting.

@MissSkittles will go through your husbandry and answer any questions you have.
 

xoquinn

New Member
Ok so you actually want to use calcium without D3 at almost all of your feedings and then you want a good multivitamin with D3 like Repashy calcium plus LoD version to use 2 times a month say the 1st and the 15th. Your overdosing on D3 which can make the MBD worse. Also D3 overdose can impact their appetite. It probably has not shown an issue yet just because he has the incorrect UVB lighting.

@MissSkittles will go through your husbandry and answer any questions you have.
You have been very informative, thank you
 

MissSkittles

Chameleon Enthusiast
Veiled chameleon (male I think) I’ve had him for 2 years, this month.



He doesn’t like being handled, his name is ‘grumpy’ because he gets grumpy if I try to handle him which I think is more his species than him specifically
Great name! 😂 I have a girl named Grumpy. Here’s a great blog on building trust.https://www.chameleonforums.com/blogs/building-trust-with-your-chameleon.2396/

Most commonly eats 3-4 crickets daily, coated in ‘repti calcium’ , also occasionally eats wax, meal and super worms. Attaching some graphics. Variety is best. Feeder bugs need to be well fed and kept healthy so that they offer more nutrition to your cham. He is looking a bit chunky (puffy casque and cheeks) and should really be fed 3-4 feeders every other day or even 3 days a week.
@Beman already advised on supplements. D3 is fat soluble so isn’t excreted quickly in the body and can build up to toxic levels. This can effect muscle, nerve and bone, very similarly to how lack of D3 does. Not having a multivitamin adds to him not doing well.



I spray his enclosure 2-3 times daily, the past 2 years I hardly ever see him drinking from his water bowl, however the past week he has been drinking more water I’ve noticed Chameleons don’t drink from bowls. They drink the water droplets off of leaves. It’s best to spray for at least 2 minutes right before lights go on, off and you can add one at mid day (or use a dripper for about 20-30 minutes).



I don’t think he has pooped in a few days, nothing fresh in his cage, I don’t remember it looking wrong however Has he ever been tested for parasites? It’s always best to have a fecal done.



A few weeks ago his vent seemed to be inflamed but it seemed to have gotten better in a few days His vent does look a bit puffy. I’m wondering if perhaps he has a stuck hemipenal plug. Although this can be checked for and addressed at home, I feel it’s best to have a vet do it to prevent hurting your guy.



Cage info -



Tall screen cage ~ 3ft x 1.5ft x 1.5ft This is really too small. He needs at least a 2x2x4’ enclosure. I keep my males in double that size and they do use all of the space.



About 65% humidity This is too high. Ideal range is between 30-50%.



80 degrees basking, 65-70 degrees lower in cage You could increase his basking temp just a bit up to 84-85.

(simple temp and humidity gage in his cage) If it is an analog gauge, they are notoriously inaccurate. Better to use a digital gauge with wired probe.



Cage is located on my bureau in my bedroom, has been there for 2 years, top of his cage is about 5ft of the floor



I’m located in Massachusetts What area?

Your guy desperately needs a proper uvb source. The standard is a linear T5 with either ReptiSun 5.0 or Arcadia 6%. Most chain pet stores do not sell these. I believe PetSmart has started selling Arcadia Pro T5 which is a great light. It comes with a 6% uvb bulb. Then you’ll want to put basking spot about 8-9” above where your light sits. The light will come in 24” length, but your guy needs an enclosure upgrade.
You need to replace all of the artificial plants with safe clean live ones. Veileds like to nibble their plants. It only takes one bite of a fake leaf for impaction to happen. Attaching plant graphic. Pothos is excellent. Putting a tall center plant like a schefflera or weeping fig is ideal. You want to provide lots of shaded areas for your guy to hide in or take shade. I hang my artificial plants on the outside of my enclosures to give my chams a sense of more privacy from me.

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