Feeding and dusting.

OreoPapii

Member
I have a few questions on how much food I should feed my chameleon and how often and what I should be dusting with. My Cham just recently turned 7 months old and I don’t know how much I should be feeding him. Every day I give him about 8-10 medium crickets and sometimes if they are small I give him like 10 or 11 I’m not sure if I’m feeding him too much or what. And also I used to dust crickets daily with calcium with d3 then I heard you shouldn’t do that so I stopped the day I heard that so I dust crickets with just calcium now with no d3 but I don’t know how often I should use d3 and also I have multivitamin powder but I don’t know when I should use that I mainly just sprinkle that on his veggies. I also give him veggies just about every day which is kale and spinach and sometimes I sprinkle multivitamin on that, so I just a whole bunch of questions about all that.
 

CamoChameleonsHuman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Hello and welcome. Would you please mind filling this out? Just copy and paste and fill it out. Pictures of your Cham and enclosure are always helpful as well.

Here is some recommended information to include when asking for help in the health clinic forum. By providing this information you will receive more accurate and beneficial responses. It might not be necessary to answer all these questions, but the more you provide the better. Please remember that even the most knowledgeable person can only guess at what your problem may be. Only an experienced reptile veterinarian who can directly examine your animal can give a true diagnosis of your chameleon's health.


Chameleon Info:
  • 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.
 

Peeps101

Established Member
I have a few questions on how much food I should feed my chameleon and how often and what I should be dusting with. My Cham just recently turned 7 months old and I don’t know how much I should be feeding him. Every day I give him about 8-10 medium crickets and sometimes if they are small I give him like 10 or 11 I’m not sure if I’m feeding him too much or what. And also I used to dust crickets daily with calcium with d3 then I heard you shouldn’t do that so I stopped the day I heard that so I dust crickets with just calcium now with no d3 but I don’t know how often I should use d3 and also I have multivitamin powder but I don’t know when I should use that I mainly just sprinkle that on his veggies. I also give him veggies just about every day which is kale and spinach and sometimes I sprinkle multivitamin on that, so I just a whole bunch of questions about all that.
D3 twice every month, multivitamin twice every month, but do not use the same week to give D3 as to give multivitamin
 

Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Hi there so as stated calcium with D3 lightly dusted on feeders two times a month with a multivitamin on the opposite weeks 2 times a month. Calcium without D3 can be lightly dusted at nearly every feed. Stop feeding spinich and kale because they contain oxalates that can interfere with calcium absorption. You can safely feed things like dandelion greens which they sell at the grocery store. This was the only fresh veg mine would go for. I also tried Turnip greens and mustard greens but he avoided those.
As far as how much you are feeding at 7 months old you need to start transitioning to every other day feedings. Do this by cutting back your feeders by two each week on your opposite days. You will eventually be at an every other day schedule.
Here are the exacts based on age
Juveniles 3-6 months of age: 10-12 small crickets daily
Juveniles 6-12 months of age: 10-12 medium crickets every other day
Adults over 12 months of age: 7-10 medium-large crickets every other day
 

OreoPapii

Member
Hi there so as stated calcium with D3 lightly dusted on feeders two times a month with a multivitamin on the opposite weeks 2 times a month. Calcium without D3 can be lightly dusted at nearly every feed. Stop feeding spinich and kale because they contain oxalates that can interfere with calcium absorption. You can safely feed things like dandelion greens which they sell at the grocery store. This was the only fresh veg mine would go for. I also tried Turnip greens and mustard greens but he avoided those.
As far as how much you are feeding at 7 months old you need to start transitioning to every other day feedings. Do this by cutting back your feeders by two each week on your opposite days. You will eventually be at an every other day schedule.
Here are the exacts based on age
Juveniles 3-6 months of age: 10-12 small crickets daily
Juveniles 6-12 months of age: 10-12 medium crickets every other day
Adults over 12 months of age: 7-10 medium-large crickets every other day
Thank you very much for your help! So do I just feed him today none tomorrow or do I slowly feed him less. Because I understand I feed him every other day but how do I work my way to that or do I just start right now? UPDATE: nevermind I understand what you said now
 
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jamest0o0

Chameleon Enthusiast
Hi there so as stated calcium with D3 lightly dusted on feeders two times a month with a multivitamin on the opposite weeks 2 times a month. Calcium without D3 can be lightly dusted at nearly every feed. Stop feeding spinich and kale because they contain oxalates that can interfere with calcium absorption. You can safely feed things like dandelion greens which they sell at the grocery store. This was the only fresh veg mine would go for. I also tried Turnip greens and mustard greens but he avoided those.
As far as how much you are feeding at 7 months old you need to start transitioning to every other day feedings. Do this by cutting back your feeders by two each week on your opposite days. You will eventually be at an every other day schedule.
Here are the exacts based on age
Juveniles 3-6 months of age: 10-12 small crickets daily
Juveniles 6-12 months of age: 10-12 medium crickets every other day
Adults over 12 months of age: 7-10 medium-large crickets every other day
Not to be a bummer, but the veggie info you posted is incorrect. Dandelion is higher in oxalates than kale, and all greens and many other vegetables contain some amount of oxalates. This why it's important to feed variety. Vegetables do have anti nutrients and too many of one can be a bad thing. Kale and cruciferous vegetables are more known for their goitrogens than oxalate content.

This is why it's a good idea to have several leafy greens on hand and rotating each day what you use instead of just slamming down the kale or spinach or whatever. Not just for chameleons, but for people too.
 

OreoPapii

Member
Not to be a bummer, but the veggie info you posted is incorrect. Dandelion is higher in oxalates than kale, and all greens and many other vegetables contain some amount of oxalates. This why it's important to feed variety. Vegetables do have anti nutrients and too many of one can be a bad thing. Kale and cruciferous vegetables are more known for their goitrogens than oxalate content.

This is why it's a good idea to have several leafy greens on hand and rotating each day what you use instead of just slamming down the kale or spinach or whatever. Not just for chameleons, but for people too.
So what should I do for verity or should I just mainly go for dandelion
 

Thehippie

Chameleon Enthusiast
just wanted to point out not to feed spinach it can do some calcium binding I think and that isn't good for chameleons, rotate the greens with dandelion sweet potato carrot and a lot more, @Beman could you throw in one if those wonderful graphics?
 

jamest0o0

Chameleon Enthusiast
All greens have some amount of oxalates(the thing you're talking about in spinach that binds calcium), if you trade out oxalates, you're likely getting goitrogens or something else. That's why you want to mix it up and rotate. This benefits people as well. There should be very few things that you 'never' use. There should be things used in small amounts and larger amounts, but the idea is to get as much variety as possible.
 

Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Not to be a bummer, but the veggie info you posted is incorrect. Dandelion is higher in oxalates than kale, and all greens and many other vegetables contain some amount of oxalates. This why it's important to feed variety. Vegetables do have anti nutrients and too many of one can be a bad thing. Kale and cruciferous vegetables are more known for their goitrogens than oxalate content.

This is why it's a good idea to have several leafy greens on hand and rotating each day what you use instead of just slamming down the kale or spinach or whatever. Not just for chameleons, but for people too.
No, please always correct me if you see something. I was told months ago that they were a good everyday veg to offer and had no clue that they were higher then kale... Beman won't eat any vegi's I have tried them all lol. So you are saying you can use kale, spinich, and dandelion but to offer them in rotation each day? Can you add in mustard greens and collards as well? If a person were to stick with two or three vegi's to offer going back and forth are there two specifically that you would recommend?
 

Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Thank you very much for your help! So do I just feed him today none tomorrow or do I slowly feed him less. Because I understand I feed him every other day but how do I work my way to that or do I just start right now? UPDATE: nevermind I understand what you said now
Yeah so just confirming it would look something like this which is a gradual decrease that will not shock him.
Week 1 10,8,10,8,10,8,10
Week 2 6,10,6,10,6,10,6
Week 3 10,4,10,4,10,4,10
Week 4 2,10,2,10,2,10,2
Week 5 10,0,10,0,10,0,10 This is the beginning of your every other day feeding.
I wrote mine out on a calendar when I did it otherwise it is easy to get lost lol.
 

starter

Member
Hi, someone wrote:
Juveniles 3-6 months of age: 10-12 small crickets daily
Juveniles 6-12 months of age: 10-12 medium crickets every other day
Adults over 12 months of age: 7-10 medium-large crickets every other day

My question: Is there any particular reason why you would feed a chameleon only every second day?

I also have a question regarding the term "dusting". How is it done? I take some powder between my fingers and distribute it all over the crickets before I put them into the vivarium. Is that the right way or should I use a sieve to distribute the powder more evenly? Any other tips?

By the way, how do you like my new avatar? It shows my new male, called Sherlock. He is an experienced breeder and, after more than a month introductory time with lots of hissing and puffing (from my female's side), my girl Lizzie finally shares a vivarium with him.
 

marcsman16

Established Member
Hi, someone wrote:
Juveniles 3-6 months of age: 10-12 small crickets daily
Juveniles 6-12 months of age: 10-12 medium crickets every other day
Adults over 12 months of age: 7-10 medium-large crickets every other day

My question: Is there any particular reason why you would feed a chameleon only every second day?

I also have a question regarding the term "dusting". How is it done? I take some powder between my fingers and distribute it all over the crickets before I put them into the vivarium. Is that the right way or should I use a sieve to distribute the powder more evenly? Any other tips?

By the way, how do you like my new avatar? It shows my new male, called Sherlock. He is an experienced breeder and, after more than a month introductory time with lots of hissing and puffing (from my female's side), my girl Lizzie finally shares a vivarium with him.
Hi, someone wrote:
Juveniles 3-6 months of age: 10-12 small crickets daily
Juveniles 6-12 months of age: 10-12 medium crickets every other day
Adults over 12 months of age: 7-10 medium-large crickets every other day

My question: Is there any particular reason why you would feed a chameleon only every second day?

I also have a question regarding the term "dusting". How is it done? I take some powder between my fingers and distribute it all over the crickets before I put them into the vivarium. Is that the right way or should I use a sieve to distribute the powder more evenly? Any other tips?

By the way, how do you like my new avatar? It shows my new male, called Sherlock. He is an experienced breeder and, after more than a month introductory time with lots of hissing and puffing (from my female's side), my girl Lizzie finally shares a vivarium with him.
Grab a bag and put the crickets and whatever you are dusting them with(D3, plain Calcium, multivitamin) inside it and gently shake the bag.
 

Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Hi, someone wrote:
Juveniles 3-6 months of age: 10-12 small crickets daily
Juveniles 6-12 months of age: 10-12 medium crickets every other day
Adults over 12 months of age: 7-10 medium-large crickets every other day

My question: Is there any particular reason why you would feed a chameleon only every second day?

I also have a question regarding the term "dusting". How is it done? I take some powder between my fingers and distribute it all over the crickets before I put them into the vivarium. Is that the right way or should I use a sieve to distribute the powder more evenly? Any other tips?

By the way, how do you like my new avatar? It shows my new male, called Sherlock. He is an experienced breeder and, after more than a month introductory time with lots of hissing and puffing (from my female's side), my girl Lizzie finally shares a vivarium with him.
Once they hit the adult stage they will just gain weight which is not a good thing as it can cause damage to organs etc. So we start cycling them to an every other day feeding. In the wild they have to hunt for their food it does not arrive in mass in a bowl.

You can put feeders in a bag and shake to lightly coat with supplements or you can buy these https://www.amazon.com/Rep-Cal-SRP0...aker&qid=1552839398&s=gateway&sr=8-1-fkmrnull

Are they permanently in the same enclosure? They should be housed separately or they can injure each other. Also it is very stressful for chameleons to be housed together which is why it is not done unless someone is breeding them. In those instances they are only put in together for breeding time then removed immediately.
 

jamest0o0

Chameleon Enthusiast
No, please always correct me if you see something. I was told months ago that they were a good everyday veg to offer and had no clue that they were higher then kale... Beman won't eat any vegi's I have tried them all lol. So you are saying you can use kale, spinich, and dandelion but to offer them in rotation each day? Can you add in mustard greens and collards as well? If a person were to stick with two or three vegi's to offer going back and forth are there two specifically that you would recommend?

It's hard to say for sure what should be used most often because we don't really know much about chameleon nutrition and how different things affect their bodies. We're basically all just doing the shotgun method, hoping they absorb some nutrients and benefit from it. Dark leafy greens are excellent sources of nutrients, I don't see a problem with using any of them. You could try to mix and match calcium rich foods with high oxalate foods to balance it.

Personally I am not a fan of eating leafy greens so I blend them in protein smoothies with a bunch of stuff. I buy 3-4 different bundles of greens at a time and just use a different one each day. You could apply this to gutloading. I also like to make the frozen blended gutload with a huge variety. That way the feeders are getting different amounts of ingredients each time they eat it.

Blanching can cut down the anti nutrient content of foods, but also reduces some of the beneficial micronutrients.
 

CamoChameleonsHuman

Chameleon Enthusiast
I want to see if I have this right... Every other day feeding is basically to prevent too much weight gain?
Correct. It's best practice for adult or full grown chameleons to only feed every other day. If you have a juvenile or baby its every day. Being overweight is just as bad as being underweight for them.
 

Ringobaby

Member
I had a question. I have juvenile veiled Chameleon and was told he only eats 5-6 crickets when they fed him during the 15 min rule. Should I keep it that way or add more?
 
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