How do you tame a Panther Chameleon?

ChameleonBoss

New Member
I have just received my first panther chameleon 3 months old(pics on the way) and so far I have kind of left him alone in his cage and not bothered him too much so he can acclimate to the cage. I only open it to clean and feed him. He hasnt been stressed since the first hour in the cage and he kind of perks up like he knows food is coming when i open the cage. My question is, I want to get to the point where I can handle him and take him out and let him bask outside, feed him by hand, how do I take steps to start taming him?


At what age can I start feeding him silk worms or phoenix worms?
 

carol5208

Chameleon Enthusiast
You can feed him both of those prey items now. Just make sure the silks are small enough. The phoenix worms are always small so you don't have to worry about that. Hand feeding would be your best bet as he will start to associate your hand with food and not something that is going to harm him. I use the stick method which some may not agree with but it works for me. I just put a branch under the front legs and life up. Yes, at first they fight you a little and puff up but eventually climb on. I have found once they are out of the cage they tend to mellow and not be as territorial as when they are in the cage. Once you have them on the stick then reach your hand under the front legs and lift up. They usually climb on. After awhile they get used to it and pretty soon, you can stick your hand in the cage. You can also try opening the cage door and let them climb out on the cage and try using your hand or stick for them to climb onto. Lastly, try putting a large potted plant outside the open cage door and see if they will venture on out to that and again use a branch or your hand to try and remove them.
 

pigglett79

Avid Member
We got our panther when he was 4 months old. We were hand feeding and bringing him out for handling everyday. We also put a fake tree outside his open cage door to get him used to venturing out. His daily handling was only for about 5 minutes at a time, but enough to get him used to us. We didn't force him to come out but would just hold out our hand for as long as we could until he would come over. He started hand feeding and walking to us pretty quickly. I would also put my hand under him and slowly lift him up to bring him out.

Now he is a little overly friendly, but I prefer that to being afraid or aggressive.
 

ChameleonBoss

New Member
You can feed him both of those prey items now. Just make sure the silks are small enough. The phoenix worms are always small so you don't have to worry about that. Hand feeding would be your best bet as he will start to associate your hand with food and not something that is going to harm him. I use the stick method which some may not agree with but it works for me. I just put a branch under the front legs and life up. Yes, at first they fight you a little and puff up but eventually climb on. I have found once they are out of the cage they tend to mellow and not be as territorial as when they are in the cage. Once you have them on the stick then reach your hand under the front legs and lift up. They usually climb on. After awhile they get used to it and pretty soon, you can stick your hand in the cage. You can also try opening the cage door and let them climb out on the cage and try using your hand or stick for them to climb onto. Lastly, try putting a large potted plant outside the open cage door and see if they will venture on out to that and again use a branch or your hand to try and remove them.


Cool, I'll try it, but you think that phoneix worms can be hand fed for a 3 month panther? Thanks I didn't know those worms were so small
 

ChameleonBoss

New Member
We got our panther when he was 4 months old. We were hand feeding and bringing him out for handling everyday. We also put a fake tree outside his open cage door to get him used to venturing out. His daily handling was only for about 5 minutes at a time, but enough to get him used to us. We didn't force him to come out but would just hold out our hand for as long as we could until he would come over. He started hand feeding and walking to us pretty quickly. I would also put my hand under him and slowly lift him up to bring him out.

Now he is a little overly friendly, but I prefer that to being afraid or aggressive.

That's where I want to get my Cham at. I have a huge palm-like tree that we keep in a bright spot in our living room, I want to get him use to that tree so he can hangout on there when the family is in the living room chillin.
 

Jelloman

New Member
I think if you get your Cham to hand feed the chances of other types of handling increase greatly. The first time I hendled my cham was after several weeks of hand feeding followed by leaving the cage open until he ventured out. Once he ran out of places to go on top of the cage he went onto my hand and I quickly trasnferred him to a potted plant in a sunny spot. I am pretty much doing this now as a daily routine but the difference is sometimes he will go directly onto my hand. At times I am opening the cage to offer food and he ignores it and either goes onto my hand or scrambles out of the cage and onto the cage door.
 

Puterguru

New Member
People keep asking "how do you tame your chameleon"...

I came into this hobby 6 weeks ago with the expectation that I would never handle my chameleon. That it is a "display animal", much like my Zebra Finches. Look but don't touch. My cham will sometimes let me scratch him in the chin area but that is as far as I get and I am happy with that because that is a little more than I expected. Everything that I have read said that a chameleon is not an animal that likes to be handled so don't expect it and I didn't and I am cool with that.

Just my two cents...
 

pigglett79

Avid Member
People keep asking "how do you tame your chameleon"...

I came into this hobby 6 weeks ago with the expectation that I would never handle my chameleon. That it is a "display animal", much like my Zebra Finches. Look but don't touch. My cham will sometimes let me scratch him in the chin area but that is as far as I get and I am happy with that because that is a little more than I expected. Everything that I have read said that a chameleon is not an animal that likes to be handled so don't expect it and I didn't and I am cool with that.

Just my two cents...

Each individual animal has their own personality and level of comfort. In my opinion it is best for their overall safety and health to have them comfortable with handling. Think how much easier it is to take them outside, to the vet, out to a free range etc. if they are ok with being handled. My panther is a rare guy in that he is totally down with being on people, he reaches out and practically jumps on us as we walk by. Any person can put their hand out and he walks right on. He walks across the house to be with us.

Now my Jackson, he is more shy and has his limits, which we respect. Instead of a hand ride to his free range he has a vine he can crawl on from the cage to the trees. However we have still worked to get him at least to tolerate handling to be able to go outside and to the vet with less stress. He will also stop half way across his vine and just stare at us to let us know he wants some bugs. If you spend enough time with them you can pick up on their ques and also make it so everyone is more comfortable.

I also take the handling time as an opportunity to inspect them for any possible health issues and weigh them at least once a month.
 

ChameleonBoss

New Member
I've done my research and I know chams are display animals, but as far as handling and taming I'm looking more to transport to outside basking spots and getting use to me, which I have seen chams do, I'm looking for getting my Cham to a comfortable spot with me to handle him in that way.
 

bbprinting

New Member
Cool, I'll try it, but you think that phoneix worms can be hand fed for a 3 month panther? Thanks I didn't know those worms were so small

You can get small phoenix worms to feed him, I have a 3 month old also and I think it depends on the phoenix worm, the ones you get in a cup are not very fat so a full grown phoenix worm would be fine but I feed my phoenix worms so they are very fat and are probably too big for him.
 

ChameleonBoss

New Member
You can get small phoenix worms to feed him, I have a 3 month old also and I think it depends on the phoenix worm, the ones you get in a cup are not very fat so a full grown phoenix worm would be fine but I feed my phoenix worms so they are very fat and are probably too big for him.

Where do you get your phoenix worms from?
 

Humber Brad

New Member
We started our guy on phoenix worms at about 4 months. He got a taste for them pretty quick and from there hand feeding was only as difficult as holding onto the worms. We lucked out in that our breeder handled our guy every day and we were able to just build on that. He's now about 7 months and is very easily handled. He'll hang out on my shoulder or just crawl on our arms with no signs of stress. He'll often run for your hand, even when you're trying to feed him. Makes life alot easier (and probably more enjoyable)
 

ChameleonBoss

New Member
We started our guy on phoenix worms at about 4 months. He got a taste for them pretty quick and from there hand feeding was only as difficult as holding onto the worms. We lucked out in that our breeder handled our guy every day and we were able to just build on that. He's now about 7 months and is very easily handled. He'll hang out on my shoulder or just crawl on our arms with no signs of stress. He'll often run for your hand, even when you're trying to feed him. Makes life alot easier (and probably more enjoyable)

Thanks for the reassurance, I'm gonna let him chill in the cage with crickets for a couple weeks, he's actually getting use to and not stressing as much when people come to watch him feast on crickets.
 
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