is my Cham sick? thought my baby panther was dead

Discussion in 'Health Clinic' started by saberofblue09, Mar 9, 2018.

  1. saberofblue09

    saberofblue09 New Member

    Hi everyone,

    My boyfriend works at petco and they received a shipment of new animals and some entered their 'wellness' room, one being a hatchling (apparently 2 days old) baby female panther chameleon. She was too small and fragile to put out on the selling floor. Her eyes looked way too large for her head and frame so the second he saw her he sent me a photo knowing it would be love at first site and I bought her the next day. She was very very small could sit at the tip of my pointer finger and I have very small hands.

    Obviously, with my boyfriend being an animal care taker/ expert Kiwi's set up is perfect to my knowledge.
    She has a screened enclosure (that I partially seran wrapped to hold in moisture) , plenty of leaves and branches and climbing hammocks, a dropper, a day and night uvb a heat lamp and a humidifier. Everything was going perfect for the first two months. Kiwi is about three months old now.

    As for feeding I feed her every day or every other day -small crickets dusted with calcium.

    I came home from work the other day excited to see baby Kiwi at 4pm and feed her and she was completely pitch white - more white than I have ever seen her before in a weird body position at the very last leaf of her cage. I tried to wake her and she was completely unresponsive, I touched her, I spoke to her, I misted her- absolutely nothing. I started freaking out thinking she died... its very unusual of her to sleep during the day like this and she was unresponsive, body position weird and the color was ghastly. After about an hour of watching her and her not responding to my touch or sound I was convinced she was dead and started crying my eyes out. I cried my eyes out from 4 pm to 12:30 am begging god and the universe to bring my sweet baby Cham back to me I was beyond devastated. I love her so much. Around 5pm I shut off all her lights because peering into her cage was making me cry even more.

    My boyfriend got off of work at 11:30 at night and came over to my place around 12:30 am where I asked him to come over and take a look at her and tell me how she died and help me bury her because I couldn't bare to do it myself or alone. I did everything for her I was so heartbroken and confused. Was it because she was too small? He started telling me her eyes were moving and to my disbelief Kiwi was alive she was definitely not herself she seemed really lethargic and confused. Out of all the research I did when I though she was dead I came to two conclusions... maybe she over heated or maybe she was too stressed for whatever reason. We fed her - she ate normal, misted her and put her back in her cage.

    The next day I stayed home from work and class to look after her health I didn't want to add to her stress. The entire day she was completely out of character and very timid which usually Kiwi is sassy and brazen.I fed her and misted her and didn't handle her too much because I didn't want to stress her. I limited her heat lamp exposure because I thought maybe the heat was too much for her?????

    The day after that (two days since the incident) she was very active and herself again, she ate 4 crickets and seemed to be fine,

    Today she was at the bottom of her cage again sleeping during the day curled up. Her humidifier was on for the whole day, she was misted, with her day uvb and day heat on. I tried to wake her again and she was unresponsive but this time had color to her body. Her eyes are moving around but something is wrong. Now its been an hour she's dark in color and in the same spot and won't move.

    Sorry for the long explanation I just want to cover everything. Please help me why does she keep doing this. Is this normal? what do I do? how can I help her? is she sick?

    One more thing I would like to add is that Kiwi is definitely premature in size. My boyfriend constantly kept telling me how small she was compared to the other chams at the pet store around her age, Kiwi is not even finger length at 3 months old. Her paws and arms look very frail. I take very good care of her. Petco has another female Cham in store who is actually younger than my kiwi and she is much larger and thicker in size. I knew she was a small baby but I had no idea how seriously small she is and now I am very concerned. They warned me when I initially bought her that she's too little and might not make it. I am just so upset and concerned. I have had no issues with her health for the first two months of having her. Could someone please tell me whats wrong with my child.
    thank you so much for helping us.

    Attached Files:

  2. Darthroastcoffee

    Darthroastcoffee Avid Member

    What state do you live in that petco has panther chameleons??? At 2 days old is insane she should of never been passed around. Not saying anything bad on your part you definitely are trying but I’ve never heard of anything healthy coming out of petco I have had a veiled from petco and it’s been a battle with different problems I have had 3 other veileds that was totally fine “not from petco” but it might just be bad breading or genetics it sounds like u have the knowledge to care for her could you post pictures of the cage and set up you have her in.
  3. kinyonga

    kinyonga Chameleon Enthusiast

    What are the temperatures in the cage? It's so tiny you need to be careful misting it that the mist is very fine and you don't spray it at it's face. What size crickets are you feeding it and how many does it eat a day? As was already asked, please post photos if the cage. What lights specifically are you using for UVB and basking?
    CJ's Exotics and timw1 like this.
  4. saberofblue09

    saberofblue09 New Member

    Thank you for your response. I live in New York. You are absolutely right I am surpsied that she was even shipped out from whatever breeder they got her from. A little update: Kiwi is doing much better and seems to be back to her normal self after just a few days of being overbearing and monitoring her conditions. I am still greatly concerned about her size. I'm gonna post some photos of her cage for reference
  5. saberofblue09

    saberofblue09 New Member

    Hi thank you so much for your response. I will be posting photos of her terrarium and set up for reference. Her temperature usually averages between 80-95 degrees. I am using a dual zoomed light fixture with two zoomed timers one to alternate the uvb and one just to alternate the heat lamp. As of now she is on a 8-8 schedule of day uvb/ day heat lamp. I forgot the brand of the day uvb bulb or the wattage because I threw out the boxes but I think it might be 75w also the night uvb is a red light by zoomed probably also 75w. For basking the heat lamp is on the right side of her terrarium (incase she gets too hot) she has several branches and leaves that are close enough to the light for her to bask on. She is in a 16" L X 16" W X 30" H screened zoomed terrarium. I use xsmall size crickets. Some days she will only be hungry enough for 3 or 4 where other days she will binge eat like 12-15. A little update on her though : she has been doing much better she seems to be back to her normal self however I've been very cautious with her because I do not want to stress her out. As of now she seems to be back to good health however, I am very concerned with her size compared to other panther chameleons her age and I'm scared she might go into that coma like state again.
  6. saberofblue09

    saberofblue09 New Member

    The ratchet piece of cardboard is to redirect the stream of humidity to her cage instead of in the room and the back wall of it is sedan wrapped to retain the moisture as well as half of the sides. if either of you have any advice for how to retain more moisture/ humidity in a way thats not ratchet, please let me know I would greatly appreciate it- thanks in advance

    Attached Files:

  7. Darthroastcoffee

    Darthroastcoffee Avid Member

    I would go with live plants to help with humidity it helps a lot! heres a link to something that might be helpful
    Also I I’m not to sure but I don’t think your supposed to have the humidifier on all day you might cause respiratory problems especially her being so young also small but Im not 100% on that one maybe someone else has more to say on that.
  8. saberofblue09

    saberofblue09 New Member

    Thanks so much for the link :) I really appreciate all of your help & I only leave it on 6-8 hours a day while I'm at work and also depending on how cold & dry is is in this crazy New York weather.
  9. Darthroastcoffee

    Darthroastcoffee Avid Member

    O ok good. And yea I hear you I’m in jersey the weather is horrible..
  10. kinyonga

    kinyonga Chameleon Enthusiast

    You said..."the night uvb is a red light "...I doubt the red light is a UVB light and there should be no lights on at night anyhow. That might have been part of the problem. If the temperature drops to the low 60's F then you could use a ceramic heat emitter at night...but otherwise you don't need anything. The drop in temperature at night won't hurt them. So for light there should be a UVB light and a white light like a regular incandescent household bulb for basking in during the day.

    I've never used a humidifier like that on the cage so I'm leaving it to someone else to say if it's ok or not.

    Do you know about feeding/gutloading the insects? Supplementing/dusting the insects? (I know you said you used calcium powder).

    If it's a female it will eventually need an egglaying bin in it's cage because they can produce eggs without having mated....and around the age of sexually maturity you need to make changes to how you feed a female.

    The unusual position she was in when you though she was dead...was it like a fetal position...all curled up?
    Mawtyplant likes this.
  11. Tabner

    Tabner Member

    For lighting, you need to use a linear 5.0, uvb bulb. Reptisun is one of the brands recommend most often. The CFL bulbs aren’t very good. You can search the forum files, for uvb lighting and basking temps.
    There is all kinds of useful info in the files
    You may have a linear bulb behind the domes that I couldn’t see, but I would rather say something and be safe instead of sorry!
    I sure hope your baby gets well soon!
    HerbertHancock likes this.

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