Developing an RI?

Maggiebeas

Member
A quick note about where we have gotten some of our more specific information from. The guy we got him from has been a successful breeder of a huge variety of chams, he now owns a store where he keeps more exotic varieties of reptile. He also works with an exotic reptile vet at the Aurora Animal Hospital for his husbandry information.
***In regards to the picture, the end of his tail is the same color as the rest of him, my camera on my phone is just absolute garbage.
Your Chameleon - Veiled, male, not really sure how old he is. We got him the beginning of December, so we have had him for a solid two months. He was labeled as a juvenile when we got him and he is still growing pretty quick.
Handling - He HATES us so we have been working on hand feeding, other than that once a day hand feeding he does not get handled ever. He occasionally will climb out onto my hand for that hand feeding but I do not move and he climbs right back into his cage after, doesn't even get stress colors.
Feeding - He is a voracious eater. 8 - 9 gut-loaded dubias daily. Usually around an hour after his light turns on so he has a full eleven hours of basking time to digest those guys. Once a week he gets about eight crickets for some fun enrichment activity. Daily (hang in here with me) small horned worms for hand feeding. The guy we got him from said that this was alright as he is a juvie, it doesn't affect how much he eats of his other feeders, and they are pretty small. We gut-load with the variety that is shown from the gut-loading sheet that floats around the chameleon forum about twelve hours before he gets them so that the food is still in the early stages of digestion by the bugs.
Supplements - Now don't be mad, don't get angry, hang in there with me for this (oooo starting out well I know). The supplement the store gave us is a newer one that the Aurora vet clinic also stands behind. It is Repashy brand Calcium Plus. We have been told that it is appropriate calcium, low enough D3 to not be overdoing it. I very clearly clarified with the guy that everyone says do a calcium only for two weeks, then a with D3 every two weeks, and a multi once a month. He said that this supplement does not require those bumps and is a healthy, newer alternative to having to buy three supplements. All of his dubias get a light coating of this for every feeding and the crickets, when we use them, also get a light coating.
Watering - I have only seen him drink a couple of times but he still has very white urates and his eyes don't seem sunken in so I think he's gotta be drinking (we aren't around him very often during week days). He has a mister that goes off every three hours for forty five seconds. We use a dripper once a week. I also hand mist every once in a while when we have an exceptionally dry day just to make sure he isn't too dry. (We are in Colorado it is dry af here).
Fecal Description - Very white urates, no yellow or orange at all that we have ever seen. No parasite testing yet. Nothing undigested in the fecal matter. He's a once a day pooper most of the time.
History - Nothing we know of as far as history goes.

Cage Type - Screen with plastic around three sides (or it is way too dry), the front and top panels are unblocked so there is still air flow. 2' x 2' x 4' which he moved into about three weeks ago.
Lighting - Reptisun UVB 22" bulb (we don't know how we managed to get a 22" bulb, they are so hard to find replacements for), it is only two months old at this point. We have a 100 watt heating light that sits about six inches above the top of his cage because it is pretty strong but we keep him pretty far away from it.
Temperature - We had the basking spot at 92ish and he was still pretty dark, the guy we got him from said to bump to 95 as that is what he uses and what he has found they are happiest and healthiest at. There has been a lot of debate in the house about this so please be polite regarding that number being higher than the general recommended temp for juvenile chameleons. He gapes occasionally which is part of the problem but even when we bump the temperature down he still does it. Middle cage sits around low eighties, high seventies. Bottom is around seventy. He is consistently 67 - 70 at night at it's lowest. He has a humidity/temperature probe combo that we move around the cage every once in a while to check his readings.
Humidity - Alrighty here is the hardest/most problematic part. Please help. His daytime humidity, now that the cage has evened out with the addition of live plants, sits around high thirties until it's misted which spikes to high forties low fifties for less than ten minutes then settles at low forties for a bit. I hand mist on dry days (when he's dropping to twenties which is really rare). He has a fogger at night which bumps him to about ninety while he's at a high sixty or straight up seventy for temperature. ***We think that maybe we had the air too stagnant for a while, we have a fan in the room which we leave on now (as of the last week) to up the air circulation at night so he is still getting humidity but fresher air. Is it possible upping the air circulation could help this problem go away if it is early stage?
Plants - He has a pothos which he loves to eat, he has an arabica coffee plant which has been previously mentioned in a forum on here as safe. He has tried to eat it but it's too hard for him to pull pieces off of. He also has a lucky bamboo which he tries to eat occasionally. He has plastic vines which I have never seen him consider eating.
Placement - He is in the corner of the room with no access to mirrors or reflective surfaces that might stress him out. He is up on a coffee table about two feet up so in his basking spot he's about six feet. There is a ceiling fan but he has never seemed too bothered by it while it is on (whereas he HATES his fogger but it is only on at night so he is sleeping and doesn't get bothered by it).
Location - Dry dry cold wintery Colorado. We are at about 7100 feet but he is a Colorado bred lizard so he is probably not struggling with altitude I wouldn't think.

Current Problem - Gaping. He does it almost daily now, he will chill with his mouth open for a couple of minutes and then close for a while. I would say we get about ten minutes of it a day. No rasping, no crackling, no wheezing, no sounds. However, I have been checking when his mouth is open to see if there is any excess saliva or bubbles or anything and there may have been a spit string today but it was a bit hard to tell because he proceeded to close his mouth when I looked at him. He is a pretty angry guy but it doesn't seem like defensive mouth open, he isn't puffed up or anything. He has been in a brown phase for about a month now and seems to be coming out of it a bit as there is definitely more green more often lately. He is due for a shed. His appetite has not decreased, no decreased movement, he goes stalking around the cage probably three times a day. His eyes are just as alert and looking around, no decreased activity, no lethargy. He has strong leggies and a strong tail that look healthy and solid joints.
We don't mind taking him to the vet if anyone thinks that we are in a danger zone of anything, however, he absolutely panicked when we moved him to his new cage and I really don't want to put him through anything like that again which taking him to a vet would be SO TRAUMATIC. He didn't trust me for about a week after moving him.
 

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CamoChameleonsHuman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Does he raise his face upwards alot? Any sounds when breathing? My suggestion is drop to Repashy Calcium Plus LoD and lower basking temps to 85-88* and see if there are any changes. Also add more horizontal branches to the enclosure. I live in Pueblo, CO and feel your humidity problems. Elevation shouldn't be a factor as I've heard of people keeping chams as high as 10k feet in the mountains.
 

Maggiebeas

Member
Does he raise his face upwards alot? Any sounds when breathing? My suggestion is drop to Repashy Calcium Plus LoD and lower basking temps to 85-88* and see if there are any changes. Also add more horizontal branches to the enclosure. I live in Pueblo, CO and feel your humidity problems. Elevation shouldn't be a factor as I've heard of people keeping chams as high as 10k feet in the mountains.
We can definitely drop his temps for a bit, he raised his head occasionally but for less than ten seconds and once a day at most, usually he just looks sketchily/suspiciously at the light then goes back to his normal whatever he was doing. We have some more horizontals on the way! Also, I have never heard any sounds when he's breathing at all and I try to get pretty close when he has his mouth open so I can hear him.
 

CamoChameleonsHuman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Yeah keep an ear out for popping and crackling sounds. Or him pointing his nose upwards alot. I'm by no means necessary a replacement for proper veterinary care however. I'm not a vet or anything of that nature. I'm just a humble keeper of reptiles like yourself. Please if you feel the need to or are worried and just want your fears calm by all means take him to a vet for proper treatment.
 

cyberlocc

Chameleon Enthusiast
They will gape when they get too hot. 95 is pretty hot.

Juvis will get dark to warm up and as a sign of stress, they dont have fired up coloring, they got 2 modes as youngsters, Light and Dark, thats it.

Also I dont deal much with veilieds, but that pic is not a I'm trying to warm Dark chameleon to me. The Dark in that pic is likely resting colors, and the light your seeing is attempt at firing up. When they are, "I want top warm up Dark" they are Dark Chocolate Colored.

More like this,


 
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Gingero

Avid Member
Thank you for providing all of that info. Super helpful.

What kind of UVB bulb do you have?

Also what's your reasoning for 45 second misting sessions? Generally 2-5 minutes is recommended.

If there are no wheezing sounds, I'd attribute the gaping mouth with trying to thermoregulate.
 

Maggiebeas

Member
Thank you for providing all of that info. Super helpful.

What kind of UVB bulb do you have?

Also what's your reasoning for 45 second misting sessions? Generally 2-5 minutes is recommended.

If there are no wheezing sounds, I'd attribute the gaping mouth with trying to thermoregulate.
That's a solid question, our biggest problem is our mister has a hole and leaks like a mofo and it runs out super quick but we have been trying to figure out what is dripping. We can up it to a minute I think without running out of water by the end of the day I just think we are probably going to have to buy a new one before we can maintain a day of misting for that long unfortunately.

And we dropped his temperature a bit, maxing out at ninety and we will see how a few days goes with the gaping. Thank you so much for replying!
 

Maggiebeas

Member
Thank you for providing all of that info. Super helpful.

What kind of UVB bulb do you have?

Also what's your reasoning for 45 second misting sessions? Generally 2-5 minutes is recommended.

If there are no wheezing sounds, I'd attribute the gaping mouth with trying to thermoregulate.
Also, I have to look at the box tomorrow, it is buried somewhere! I don't remember what it was other than it was the highly recommended for chams one?
 

CamoChameleonsHuman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Thank you for providing all of that info. Super helpful.

What kind of UVB bulb do you have?

Also what's your reasoning for 45 second misting sessions? Generally 2-5 minutes is recommended.

If there are no wheezing sounds, I'd attribute the gaping mouth with trying to thermoregulate.
Looks like a T5HO linear from the picture.
 

Ruthless

Established Member
Yes 95 is WAY TO HOT!
Also check you connections where the tubing meets that could be where your leak is coming from.
 
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cyberlocc

Chameleon Enthusiast
Opps :LOL: I just edited the post
That ones even worse... The basking temp for a veilied is higher than a panthers... Where did you get these images?
2020-02-09 13_18_39-Veiled Chameleon _ Chameleon Forums.png


Thats CFs care sheet.

Also 14 years in captivity.... Never ever seen a veiled survive for 14 years, to be fair I dont keep veiled or read that much about them, but never ever seen a 14 year old mentioned.

Under 40% humidity??? Ummm no, 40-60%, Panthers 50-70% was correct on the other slide.

I have a feeling I know where this is from now.
 

cyberlocc

Chameleon Enthusiast
I was wondering about that, also, he's allowed to eat some greens right? He ate a blueberry last week (that is a rare snack).
Ya thats fine, and 90f is fine, 95f is technically fine, but he will gape (like he is) to cool down some, so just lower it to 90f, to avoid that. It gets well over 100, where veilieds live, and over 95 where Panthers do.
 

cyberlocc

Chameleon Enthusiast
Yes. It's very common for veileds to eat greens and fruits. I'd ignore that care sheet entirely. (No offense Ruthless)
That thing is a MESS! lol.

I read now its from "Chameleon Care 101" so a Facebook group... Not surprised.
 
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