Hydration Problem

VerteX

Avid Member
Short version of the question:
My veiled refuses to drink from the dripper (experimented for 2 weeks for 2 hours everyday, and it drips right next to her basking spot). She only drinks(by shooting tongue) from a moist plant pot that contains top soil.
What do we do?

Long and boring version:
My wife's veiled has been growing well. We got her when she was about 3 months old and now she is about 5 months old. She's eating her crix and super worms. Dusting is also done regularly and lightly with T-rex chameleon dust. (Will be getting rep-cal products soon)

Please refer to my wife's cage setup post to see the overall conditions.
https://www.chameleonforums.com/white-spot-nose-black-3425/#post24488

Since then we switched back to hand spraying 3 times a day since I found her DIY misting system inefficient and a little problematic. I guarantee that she is getting misted better with the hand sprayer.

I've devised a dripper system that drips everyday for 2-3 hours from the previous misting systems' pressurized water container. She has shown no interest in the dripper what so ever. The dripper had been running for 2 weeks.

They hydration problem started when I repotted the plants with top soil. She used to shoot tongue to this spider plant's pot that was filled with peat moss. The peat moss retained the water very well and she was able to get her water from it. Now that the peat moss is replaced with top soil (that drains relatively quickly) she is having hydration problems that can be easily noticed by lightly sunken eyes. As I mentioned, she doesn't want to drink from the dripper.

When I watered the plant today she immediately rushed to drink from the moist soil.

Weird or no? How can you teach a veiled to lick the leaves after they have been throughly misted?

Thank you in advance for your valued responses.
 

Jordan

New Member
Fill your mister with the hottest water that will come out of the tap. As it travels through the air it cools off. This should help it from shocking your chameleon as much should she get water on her. Also gets the moisture into the air quicker.

You may have to do longer duration mistings. Some chameleons can take awhile before the drinking response is triggered. When I mean long I mean 10-15 minute durations.

Some chameleons will never use drippers. Some will use them all the time. Maybe better to keep trying it for the time being.

What kind of plants do you have in there?
 

VerteX

Avid Member
1 Begonia
2 Areca Palm
1 Croton
1 Spider Plant

Yup, I'm using hot microvaved filtered water and it comes out warm when the misting lands on my hand. Thank you for your suggestion.
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Enthusiast
Is she pooping?

I'd be concerned with her licking the soil and the peat moss. It might be possible for her to become impacted.
 

VerteX

Avid Member
Yep, she is pooping daily. the poop has a nice viscosity. Not runny but moist. Definitely very shiny when it comes out. Urate part is very white.

Today I gave her a very long (around 30 mins) warm indirect shower on a pothos plant in the tub. For 5 minutes, she went around the plant then settled down and moved occasionally. She didn't seem to stress out based on her neutral green coloration. She closed her eyes long durations and cleaned them (bulging in/out action). Several times she made what seems like a swallowing action with head up slightly; however, for 30 minutes she did not open her mouth once.

She eats crickets (gut loaded with commercial cricket food + daily fruits and greens) and super worms. She is quite an eater but we are careful not to overfeed her. She does open her mouth when she wants to. Hisses and shows off her puffed up body by turning sideways when she gets disturbed by a hand in the cage.

I think she looks a bit better now. Here are some varied angle shots after her shower for your consideration.

Thank you.


Her new apartment:
 

Cam

New Member
What about placing a shallow container (like a plant saucer, shallow cat food dish etc.) at the base of the plant where the water collects so she can do what she is comfortable doing to obtain her moisture without ingesting dirt. You could even add a few large smooth aquarium rocks so she can "see" the moisture easier without choking on a pebble/substrate etc. (Nothing that would cover more than half of the root system etc.) Good luck!
 

TreelionsUK

New Member
As said some will never use drippers,and warmer water will prevent putting the chameleon off drinking because the water was cold.
I would say provide Very heavy mistings/showers for atleast 20mins,chameleons are very fussy animals and it can take a good 15 mins to trigger the drinking response,
Few of mine drink from the drippers,Chameleons use the humidity in the air to stay hydrated also,and its not uncommon for some chameleons to never drink.
 

Cam

New Member
I was wondering if it is recommended to "soak" the chameleon, supervised of course. At regular intervals, we do this with our Rankin Beardie when he in brumation to keep him hydrated. If so what temp should the water be and how deep is suggested?
 

VerteX

Avid Member
I would think that would cause unnecessary high levels of stress for the cham unless it's a necessary bath for a medical condition.

$0.02
 
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