Gutloading advice

Sharon12

Established Member
When I took Etosha 6 Mon old female veiled to the vet she said to gutload with t Rex calcium plus food for crickets. I just received it. Sounds like I keep the cricket colony going with fresh foods like I am doing now but feed this for 24 hours prior to feeding them to Etosha. Does anyone else use this? Is it better than fresh foods? I guess I could also rotate this in a few days a week. I dust daily with repashy calcium with loD. I assume all vitamins are in that too. She had a clean fecal fortunately so happy with that.
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Enthusiast
I've never used it. I use a wide variety of greens such as dandelions, escarole, kale, collards, endive, etc and veggies such as carrots, squash, zucchini, sweet potato, sweet red peppers, etc and a bit of fruit such as berries, Apple, pear, melon.

I'm sure others will comment on it.
 

LoneBridger

Member
For my Panther female, Pepper:
Med Crickets fed: Kale, Carrot, Tangerine rarely. Always Calcium Enriched Water Gel
Dubias: Home Chow, Tangerine, Water Beads, Always rotate leafy greens. No Calcium
I dust one bug ReptiCal twice a week
She eats like no other! New foods scare her at first too!!
More about crickets is they pass what they eat within a day or two. So feed new crickets for 6-12 hours before giving them to your reptile.
245309
 
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Syreptyon

Chameleon Enthusiast
For my Panther female, Pepper:
Med Crickets fed: Kale, Carrot, Tangerine rarely. Always Calcium Enriched Water Gel
Dubias: Home Chow, Tangerine, Water Beads, Always rotate leafy greens. No Calcium
I dust one bug ReptiCal twice a week
She eats like no other! New foods scare her at first too!!
More about crickets is they pass what they eat within a day or two. So feed new crickets for 6-12 hours before giving them to your reptile.
View attachment 245309
Just so you know, "calcium-enriched" water gel is of no use to your chameleon. The water part is useful for hydrating the crickets, but the calcium in it is useless and will not be metabolized by your chameleon. They just sell those products because they know people will buy them just because of the word "calcium" in the name. Dusting with calcium cannot be avoided. Is dusting one bug a week with ReptiCal your only use of supplements? If so, your girl is in danger of MBD and your supplement schedule needs a serious overhaul
 

LoneBridger

Member
Dusting with calcium cannot be avoided. Is dusting one bug a week with ReptiCal your only use of supplements? If so, your girl is in danger of MBD and your supplement schedule needs a serious overhaul
Thanks for the concern, but no She’s under UVB, ceramic, and everything is hand fed. As for MBD her tongue is healthy, sharp aim, and has strong grip. I never give dusted bugs every day as it gives tummy problems. She runs for water droplets immediately after giving a dusted feeder.
 

mkeBob

Avid Member
Not stealing the OP but. @LoneBridger, I advise you to fill out the How to ask for help form in the Health Clinic forum. From what you're saying and the picture of your setup you can surely use the help of some of our more experienced members. Please start your own thread.
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Enthusiast
@LoneBridger said..."As for MBD her tongue is healthy, sharp aim, and has strong grip"...the signs of MBD don't show up right away. It takes time for the chameleon to develop signs of it and all of a sudden bones will succumb to the MBD and break or other signs will suddenly appear. At that point you will be able to correct the imbalance but not all of the damage that has been done and your chameleon will suffer as a result of it all.

Calcium is needed for the bones and muscle contractions and other things in the system. For the chameleon to be able to use the calcium it needs an appropriate amount of D3. Too mush will push the chameleon to MBD as will too little...and an inappropriate amount of prEformed vitamin A will also push the chameleon towards MBD. An imbalance in phos and calcium also contribites.

Most insects lack vitamin A, have a poor ratio of calcium to phos. so we dust to try to make up for it. PrEformed vitamin A and D3 from supplements can build up in the system and cause many health issues....so we dust the way we do to try to keep the balance right. We provide proper UVB light either from bulbs or direct sunlight to try to help the balance. We have learned to do this from a lot of experience and a lot of reading and communicating with others here as well. It's still not a perfect science..but people who don't do it the way most of us do end up with chameleons that have health issues and usually die young.

We feed/gutload the insects the way we do to help the chameleons too.

I hope his helps.
 
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