Feeding chameleon veggies


New Member
Hello fellow chameleon owners! I own an 8 month old male Veiled. I'm trying to take him off crickets for the fear of pin worms (my gf's bearded dragon eats the same crickets we get at Petsmart, and they gave her pinworms and another virus, so no more crickets for a while, at least not from Petsmart). I'm going to start using silkworms as a staple for now, but I've heard that gutloading silks do not work too well, so I'd really like to try to get my veiled eating some greens. If anyone has any advice as to the best approach to getting him interested in them, how to feed them to him, and the best veggies please let me know. Thanks!
I wouldn't advise not feeding crickets at all. My veileds love crickets. I would advise not buying from a pet store. Buy from one of our site sponsors.

My veileds eat fruits and veggies once a week. I offer, collard greens, kale, very small slivers of carrot, apple, pear, strawberry, blueberry and banana.
shred your veggies like very fine coleslaw. Put them about 1/2" deep in a bowl and put your worms or crickets or whatever in there with the veggies. When the lizard shoots the bugs, bits of greens stick to the tongue. Also sometimes at first the bugs will burrow into the greens and make them move and the lizard will shoot the moving greens. As time goes by, the chameleon will get more and more of a taste for the greens and eventually will go to the bowl and eat them regardless of whether there are bugs in there with them or not.

By the way- pinworms probably were in your bearded dragon all along. Pinworms are extremely common in bearded dragons, and are very species specific- meaning there is a specific species of pinworm for bearded dragon, and another for another species of lizard, etc. They are almost impossible to get rid of because the "eggs" are so tiny and so sticky- they stick to everything and don't rinse off easily (think walls of enclosure, hands, clothing, water dish, food dish- anything that might come into contact with nearly microscopic fecal particles even from the dust). Normally they are not a problem and his body will keep them in check but if your dragon gets stressed (maybe by his "virus" or if enclosure is dirty or he is kept too cool or whatever, then they may take advantage of the weakened lizard and get to be too much for the lizard.

It is possible I suppose if someone had pinworm cysts on their hands and handled crickets at the pet shop after messing with the bearded dragons that your dragon could become infected. But most bearded dragons in captivity or wild already have them anyway- much more likely they were in your lizard when you bought him.

All this, at least is what one of the best known lizard vets in the country explained to me back in the 1990s. I suppose it is possible thinking has changed, but I doubt it. If your vet treated the pinworms and didn't have you practically replace your enclosure and keep him in a very sterile environment during treatment, or unless there is some new drug on the market in the past 15 years for pinworms, odds are your lizard still has them. But then again, odds are very high he has always had them.
Im with jann, you can order crickets for much cheaper than petsmart. I would cost me around $500.00 a month if i got crixs from pet stores. As Far as the greens, my cham eats leafs all the time so i have started tying up long green leaf lettus and hanging it from one of his branches seams to be working so far.
I've read on different sites that crickets are actually not needed at all, and that most people use them because they're the easiest to come by. I will give him crickets every now and then, but I'd rather not buy them from a pet store and the online farms (they do have much healthier crickets) are just way too expensive, and buying in bulk could be a huge hassle seeing as I live in an apartment. I'll keep doing some research, and how do you get your chameleon to actually eat the veggies? Do you hand feed it? Put it in a dish?
Just ordered 250 crickets from Ghann's cricket farms from our sponsors here can't wait my Veiled loves them and no signs of pin worms!
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