Mucus in Mouth, No Bacteria....


New Member
I got a panther female about 3 months ago now, making her about 6 months old now. On the same day she arrived, 5 brevs were also shipped to my house. One of the brevs arrived with a URI, I took them all to the vet, Panther included. During my inital visit to the vet, a fecal float was done for all of the chams. A culture and sensitivy test was done, and nothing to worry about was found. However to be safe, all of the chams were put on a baytril regiment.

Since the panther, Princess, showed no signs of a URI during the inital visit she was taken off the baytril after 2 weeks. During this time, the vet hadn't told me to accomidate for her weight gain in the dosages. She was 4 grams at the inital visit and 9.5 after those two weeks. Things seemed to be fine for about another week afterward, so I phoned the vet when she started to making a popping noises when she would move. They again prescribed another course of baytril and made accomodations for her weight gains this time. Toward the end of the two weeks it was aparent that the baytril just wasnt working. I took her back to the vet, this time a different herp vet at the same clinic. He examined her, another fecal float and examined the saliva for bacteria. and was at a loss to explain her behavior, except that it may be an issue with humidity. I then covered three sides of the cage to keep more humidity in. With this setup I was able to maintain her humidity at 70% all day as long as I was home. If not it would drop to around 40 after two hours. And at night it was just impossible to raise it over 30%.

A week went by like this with no improvement, she actually seemed a bit worse. The popping had now progressed into a mucus deposit. Ill notice her breathing heavy with her tounge coming forward in her mouth on the exhale and reverse on the inhale. This is sometimes but not always followed by a short maybe 2 second open mouth period, where she is not noticable beathing in or out then its usually done with for a few minutes. Another visit to the vet same test were done and nothing was found. He did observe that with the location of the mucus, was not inline with what he would have expected to see with a URI. The mucus resisdes mainly in her throat, behind the opening to the lungs. The sounds shes making is more of a poping which he said he would assoicated with something covering the exit of the lungs, as opposed to something coming out of them, which he says makes more of a gurgling. His best guess last time was that its normal saliva that just doesnt have enought moisture in it and has become thick. He suggested an ultra sonic humidifier. I bought one that night, last week monday, its been allowed to totally dry out each day for a few hours and washed out with bleach twice to stave of bacteria. Her humidity has not droped below 50% at night or 70% during the day in that time, and there has been no improvement. This last monday night, I had noticed a strong odor coming from the lower regions of her cage, fearing that it might be mold I replaced the plant last night.

I've basically run out of ideas at this point. She is eating very well and gaining weight on a steady course. Shes now 24 grams and was only 14 when the second baytril was started one month ago. She is awake and responsive from lights on to an hour before lights off. If anyone has any ideas, suggestions, or similar experiences please let me know. I am about willing to try anything at this point after a month of watching her struggle to breath.

Below is the cage and care info for her...

Cage Type: Screen 18x18x30 with three sides covered for humidity purposes.

Lighting: Reptisun 5.0 uvb and 75 watt zoomed basking bulb. They are on from 8-8

Temps: Basking temps get into the mid 90's, the rest of the enclosure stays at 75 and at night it drops to 68-70

Humidity: since the vet visits I have been keeping the humididty higher for longer. The area and style of heating where I am dries out the air alot. Previously she was gettin to 70% 3-5 times a day with 30% at night. Now I'm using an ultrasonic humidifer, well cleaned, to keep her at 70% constatly during the day and no lower than 55.

Plants: She was on a ficus tree untill last night, now I have her on a hibicus.

Location: There is an air vent in close proximity to her, but she cannot be touched with the air with the sides being covered.

Heres a lil info on her....

Sex, species and age: Panther, Female, ~6months old

Feeders: She gets about 7-10 crickets daily in the morning just after lights on and the morning cleaning. They are gutloaded with Fluker Farms Orange Cube. Gutload is changed bi-daily and the entire cage is cleaned one a week when new crickets are bought. She also likes to hunt down fruitflies, its not much of a meal but she really likes em.

Supplements: Shes been getting three rotating basis as per recomendations of the breeder. Repcal Calcium with D3 on Monday and Thursday. Minerall Tuesday and Friday. Repcal Herptivite Wednesday and Saturday.

Watering: She gets misted twice daily once in the morn and once about 2-3 hours before lights off, she also has a drip going. I watch her drink more than eat lol, she drinks both off the leaves and by shooting her tounge out at drops.

Fecal Description: The actual fecal matter is firm and a uniform browish black, the uriates usually always have a very tiny band of orange where the uriate and feces meet. It is very small in relation to the white part.

Current Problem: She has been producing alot of thick mucus in her mouth, that has yet to be attributed to any bacterial presence, and a culture and sensitivity test was done. I have been using a q-tip to clear this away but it has continually come back in the morning.


New Member
Anyone have any ideas at all, the new plant did not help nor has the increased humidity? Shes headed to another vet again today. Last night I removed another wad of mucus, about the size of the end of a q-tip. So it has not subsided. Please anyone with any suggestions, Im all out of ideas.
Wow. I don't really know but here are a few thoughts. Sorry, I didn't see your post yesterday. Hopefully some more people will chime in here today.

We have a cham that this past week showed many of those symptoms. I felt that she had something caught i her throat because of the tongue movement. I showered her real good and gave her crickets with their back legs cut off and a day later she was fine, so I do think she had a cricket leg or something stuck in her throat. Sometimes the leg barbs can get caught.

I don't let my panther females basking temp get into the mid 90's. For a sick cham, 90 is tops at our house.

But here's something our vet does have us do- for a sick chameleon we use one of the nighttime heat lamps, on while the cham is sleeping, so they don't get that total temp drop at night. When a cham is trying to heal, and they get cold at night, then in the morning it's like the healing process has to start all over again, every morning. Keeping their ambient temp warm at night (not a basking temp, mind you) can help them heal.

You want to hydrate her enough that the band of orange in her urates disappears. When I see that band I generally try to get the cham in for a shower that day.

I read your info and don't remember seeing if you shower her. I strongly recommend showering. It really seems to help them. Some people don't, but I think most people do shower their chams. If you do a search for "shower" on this forum you will probably get some ideas.


New Member
Thanks for your suggestions, she is headed to the vet in an hour. I'll raise her basking lamp up to get her closer to high 80's in the basking area, and pick up a heat lamp for the night. I do have some silkies on order, maybe that will help out. Untill then its legless crickets for her.

One question about the showering. My house has well water that atm is not being treated. There is a bacterial presences in the water but said to be "safe to drink". Makes the water smell like a bad egg tho, so neither we or drink it for now. All the posts about the showering I have come across mention just turning on the shower. Would just using a pump hand mister with distilled water on a large drop setting suffice?

Again Thanks soo much for the suggestions!
Just saw your post. Sorry to respond so late. We have well water too. It has iron bacteria in it, which is what you're talking about. It is safe to drink. We filter our house water, but the water in the chameleon spa :)p) has a micron filter which only filters out particles. It picks up all the little black "sheaths" that the iron bacteria create and live in. My husband is a liscensed septic guy (one of the many hats he wears) and he says you can treat your well water with chlorine to get rid of that iron bacteria. We used to do that once every few years before we got the house filter. If you have any questions you can PM us.


New Member
First off thanks for the tip, I looked into it and we are going to shock the well tomorrow if the weather permits. I'm gonna try to shower her with warm distilled tomorrow to get her better hydrated also. I got her a heat lamp and she is at 72, and sleeping soundly.

As far as the vet visit she thinks that it may be hypovitaminosis A, being that all my suppliments have beta-caratene, or some bacteria that was missed. Another swab was taken and a culture is being done on it. She gave her a shot of vitamin A, D3 and calcium along with a prescription for ceftazadime tazicef to be given by shot once every three days. Hopefully its the hypovitaminosis and I wont need to continue with the treatment, just rework suppliments. I should know more on monday or tuesday tho.
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