Lethargic, not eating or drinking


New Member
Chameleon Info:
Your Chameleon - Sydney half ambanja/half ambilobe panther chameleon. 2 years 4 months old
Handling - Probably about bi-weekly
Feeding - Crickets daily/every other day. Crickets are gutloaded with fresh fruits and veggies, which I vary (kale, strawberries, carrots, zucchini, green beans, raspberry, etc.) I use vitamin d and vitamin d plus calcium and herpavite vitamins. I rotate them. I sometimes give him hornworms for treats.
Watering - Spray in his cage with a spray bottle a few times a day.
Fecal Description - Poops look normal. White (not orange or yellow) and dark brown/black. Seems normal.
History - He's been in my care since he was only a couple months old. He's been in generally good health. He had a sperm plug once and he gets kinda cranky when he's shedding, but he seems generally healthy.

Cage Info:
Cage Type - Can't remember the brand but its one of those giant mesh cages
Lighting - Exo terra 36" 5.0 5 months old but am wondering if they are failing early? Just trying to think of anything
Temperature - Approximately 70-76 ambient and 86-90 basking.
Humidity - Sorry, can't see it right now, but I know its been pretty dry in the winter here. I have been thinking of getting him a humidifer again, but they always break.
Plants - Ficus tree, pothos, and some fake stuff.
Placement - Living room.
Location - Minneapolis, Minnesota

Current Problem - Tonight he hasn't been eating or drinking. He seems very lethargic. He has just started shedding a couple of days ago, but its weird because I've only really seen scaley flakey skin on his tail, and nowhere else. He looks kinda dehydrated like his skin looks sorta sunken in and wrinkly. I have been watering him like normal but he hasn't been drinking. And usually when I put crickets in his cage he goes after them right away but he's not touching them. He's usually tired at this time of night so I don't know if he's just really tired and also upset about shedding and that's why he's not eating and drinking. But I'm just really concerned. I plan on giving him a nice sauna in the shower in the morning, but he seems to tired for it right now. Any ideas? :(
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Avid Member
Hi, How long has he been in your care?

One day without food is nothing to worry about as of yet. It could be he is irritated with his skin he is about to shed. Just keep giving him the care you are and he will hopefully release this so everything will go back to normal.


New Member
Hi, How long has he been in your care?

One day without food is nothing to worry about as of yet. It could be he is irritated with his skin he is about to shed. Just keep giving him the care you are and he will hopefully release this so everything will go back to normal.

I've had him for about 2 years now. I'm glad you think he should be okay :/ I'll give him another day before I freak out too much.


Established Member
Your husbandry seems fine.

Maybe the shed? I know my boy goes all grumpy and barely moves when he's in shed.

Go with the shower idea as that will help with the shedding and if he is dehydrated, will help with that too. About 15mins should be ok, unless he seems happy n u can leave him in there for a bit longer.

Watch him for drinking.

Do u have any pics?

Keep us posted ;)


New Member
He just ate! I think maybe it is just the shed making him grumpy. I haven't taken any pictures of him currently, but if you want to see a cute photo of him, here's one :)


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Chameleon Queen
Can you explain your supplements please. How often do you use each? Do you not use one that only has calcium in it?


New Member

Sydney is in the hospital. After doing well, he got worse again. His calcium levels and blood cell levels are good, but he is very dehydrated :( They don't know why he hasn't been drinking yet, but he's getting fluids and antibiotics, in case there's some sort of infection. They were very skeptical at first, but they think he will probably pull through now (though there's still a chance he won't). He's in the incubator and slowly getting rehydrated, and they said I could come and see him tomorrow.

Please send him all your healing vibes/prayers/positive energy/anything you can! I'm really worried about my little man :(

kinyonga, yes I use the only calcium one and his calcium levels and bone density are good, so that's not the problem.

p.s. the horn worm wasn't as big as it looks in the picture ha ha. It was the angle it was taken at.


Avid Member
Thanks for the update... I will be sending good thoughts your way! I hope everything works out for him; Sydney is a beautiful chameleon!


Avid Member
Sending positive thoughts to you and your little guy. Hoping everything works out for the best. I'm so glad you took him to the vet right away!



New Member
Well, he was doing really well yesterday and they were starting to get optimistic, but he took a turn for the worse today :(

I finally got to go see him, and his eyes were really sunken in and he was pale and asleep. I brought him his uvb light, and he's got a really good setup in the incubator, but his vet just called me and said he's doing worse than yesterday. He is taking fluids orally now since they can't leave the bone cathedar in too long without a risk of infection. She said I'll probably be taking him home tomorrow or Saturday so I can keep giving him fluids at home, and we'll just take it one day at a time, but she doesn't seem to think there's a good chance he'll pull through :(

What really sucks is they still don't know what's wrong with him exactly, so they can't predict the prognosis from whatever disease it is...

Thanks for all your support everyone, and I'm still going to keep holding on to hope that he'll be okay...


New Member
Here's another picture of him (and me). Now I'm wishing I would have taken more pictures of him :(


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New Member
So sorry for your loss. Can't believe they didn't find out what was wrong. Did they do any blood work or a fecal? I would ask for copy of all his records and post so maybe someone can reveiw and find you an answer.:(


New Member
Thanks guys...

They weren't able to do any lab work because he was too dehydrated to take blood or anything. He was so sick that the primary goal was getting him healthy enough to take blood/fecal work.

He's being sent to a reptile specialist at the University of Minnesota who is going to perform his necropsy. The vet said he has microscopes way better than theirs so I'll get a clearer answer.
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