Food problems

ChamLover04

Member
Hi, I’ve had my panther chameleon (about 3-4 months old) for 1 week now and all he’s been eating are b. lateralis roaches. He isn’t eating much though, like 3-4 roaches daily (they are about an inch long). I tried offering him crickets and zoophobas morio, but he doesn’t want to eat any of those. Today, when I went to feed him I noticed that the lateralis roaches I put in the feeding cup smelled really bad (sweaty smell) so I got another ones which didn’t smell at all. I’m also finding a few dead roaches every day which I remove. Roaches are fed with carrots, rocket salad, oranges and gonna start giving them apples also. If anyone could help me with any of the problems I mentioned I would greatly appreciate it!
 

Ares05

Chameleon Enthusiast
- Where did you get him?
- Have your tried offering other things, aside from Roaches, crickets and supers?
- have you gotten him tested for parasites?
- Is he acting lethargic?
- Is he drinking well?
- does he bask a good bit of the day, or stay down low?

You could also consider the fact that he is still getting used to his new home. The feeders could also be too big for him. Could you post a pic of him next to his feeders?
 

ChamLover04

Member
- Where did you get him?
- Have your tried offering other things, aside from Roaches, crickets and supers?
- have you gotten him tested for parasites?
- Is he acting lethargic?
- Is he drinking well?
- does he bask a good bit of the day, or stay down low?

You could also consider the fact that he is still getting used to his new home. The feeders could also be too big for him. Could you post a pic of him next to his feeders?
I got him from one of the two chameleon sellers in my country so there aren’t really many options, but the guy has many exotic animals and the chameleon was bred in Germany, but that’s all I know.
I haven’t tried anything else, but I’m planning to get some dubia roaches soon because he seems to like roaches.
I didn’t get him tested since there is only one place where that can be done in my country and it’s a 1hr drive away
He doesn’t seem lethargic at all, he climbs all over the place
He really likes water, I mist 3-4 times daily and turn on the fogger for 30 minutes after every misting and he drinks regularly
He spends a good part of the day under the basking light, especially after eating, but he seems to go down lower later during the day like 1-2 hrs before his lamps are turned off
Insect sizes are what I suspect is the problem. The roaches are in many sizes and I get the ones that look suitable for the chameleon’s size to consume. However, the superworms and the crickets are quite large. I tried picking the smallest ones, but the chameleon still didn’t want to eat those.
 

Ares05

Chameleon Enthusiast
Post some pictures of him and his feeders, perhaps hold feeder next to him so I can see how big it is relative to his head and general size.

You need to get a fecal done, even if his poop looks normal, it is very possible he could have something. Just collect a fresh sample. A poop sample is only good for 24 hours. Keep it in a cooler place and take it to the vet soon as possible, you don't have to bring him with you. If he doesn't have parasites, great, if he does, some vets require to do a checkup on the animal before prescribing medicine, so have a travel bin ready.
 

BabyYoda

New Member
Hello there! Sorry to hear you're having problems with your Chameleon eating. How often are you dusting his food with Calcium & multi-vitamins? I do a Calcium dusting every other day, & multi-vitamins every other week. Are there any signs of an upcoming/recent shed? As for feeder size, remember to never feed them anything that has a larger width than the space between
Their eyes. From the sound of it, 3-4 one inch roaches isnt that bad for a days meal given their 1 inch+ in size, but you want to switch it up a bit other than crickets and roaches. However, how often is your Chameleon defacating? Can you tell if it is a healthy stool sample or not? (runny fecal matter, miscolored. etc.)
One GREAT way to make sure your little friend is getting the vitamins & minerals he needs is offering up SILK worms or SNAILS every few days. They are both packed with nutrition and seem to be absolutely irresistible to every Cham I've owned, and have laid my mind to ease after a 2 day hunger strike from meal worms & crickets.
 

ChamLover04

Member
Actually, he just ate really well. He ate 5 lateralis (1 small and 4 medium ones) and 2 crickets (the smallest ones I could get).
I dust his food with JBL MicroCalcium every time. He poops once a day and as a matter of fact he actually did it right now and I’m gonna attach it.
Also, a completely non related question, but do you think I should put soil on the bottom of the screen cage? Because I’m struggling with keeping humidity up (it’s around 50% and rises up to 55-60% when I give my chameleon water and when I turn the fogger on). I didn’t do it first because I was afraid of possible impaction, but he never went to the bottom of his enclosure, he’s always basking or becoming one with the leaves :p.
 

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Ares05

Chameleon Enthusiast
You can wrap 3 sides of your cage with shower curtain to keep in humidity. Unless you are going bioactive you are just doing an unnecessary impaction risk.

Dont run the fogger during the day.

I would stop feeding him superworms while he is the young, but that other feeder looks fine for him.

His poop looks like his feeders weren't fully digested, maybe it's the chitin from the superworms. Quit feeding the supers for a while and see if his poop still looks like that.
 

ChamLover04

Member
You can wrap 3 sides of your cage with shower curtain to keep in humidity. Unless you are going bioactive you are just doing an unnecessary impaction risk.

Dont run the fogger during the day.

I would stop feeding him superworms while he is the young, but that other feeder looks fine for him.

His poop looks like his feeders weren't fully digested, maybe it's the chitin from the superworms. Quit feeding the supers for a while and see if his poop still looks like that.
When and for how long should I run the fogger? And he never ate superworms btw, he doesn’t really want to. And yeah this poop looked kind of weird, but usually it looks normal.
 

Ares05

Chameleon Enthusiast
You can run the fogger at night for as long as needed.

You could try feeding him some silks and BSFL for more variety.
 

ChamLover04

Member
You can run the fogger at night for as long as needed.

You could try feeding him some silks and BSFL for more variety.
Silkworms aren’t available here, only the dried dead ones which are fish food. I’ll try to get some BSFL though. Thanks for the tip.
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Enthusiast
Where do you live country/state?

You said...."lateralis roaches I put in the feeding cup smelled really bad (sweaty smell) so I got another ones which didn’t smell at all. I’m also finding a few dead roaches every day which I remove"....how are you keeping the roaches? In a container? With a lid? Air circulation? Not letting the veggies, etc you feed them mold? Cage substrate dry or wet?
 

ChamLover04

Member
Where do you live country/state?

You said...."lateralis roaches I put in the feeding cup smelled really bad (sweaty smell) so I got another ones which didn’t smell at all. I’m also finding a few dead roaches every day which I remove"....how are you keeping the roaches? In a container? With a lid? Air circulation? Not letting the veggies, etc you feed them mold? Cage substrate dry or wet?
I live in Croatia, Europe. They are kept in a plastic container with a lid with many holes for air. I remove their food after a day or when I see it starts becoming moldy. No substrate in the roach container. There are also egg cartons in there for them to climb.
 
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kinyonga

Chameleon Enthusiast
Thanks...just wanted to see if there was a reason for the roaches smelling like that and dying. Sounds like their setup is good though.
Knowing where you live helps too because it affects husbandry and let's us know the likely temperatures you're dealing with.
 
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