Newbie cham owner

Gordita0405

Member
Hi all :) I am a new owner of young panther cham Picasso, who's roughly 5month old. I got him on the 1st of July. Hopefully I keep learning more about chameleon care from this forum and from him so I can give him a good environment to be a healthy happy Cham! I am not sure about his exact age... The shop I got him from said he was just over 4 months which means he would be between 5-6month now. Although I have show his pictures to the reptile shop near me and the owner said he looks definitely bigger than 5months... He was kept indoors with a few other panthers roughly the same age as him so I keep him in doors well. I only handle him twice the first three weeks as I just want him to settle in and I open the cage daily to clean and put crickets on the screen or leaves to monitor his eating. I noticed that although he does eat from feeding cup, he likes to hunt his food. So I always leave a few in the cup and a few inside the cage. I feed crickets different fruits and veggies and little dry fish. They are dusted before feeding(calcium with vitD and nutriBAC). He has shed twice already in the past month and poop( healthy) at least once or twice daily. Now I found more feeders online and have introduced him dubia and silk worms. Now I hand feed him all three everyday. He eats a few crickets and 5-10 dubia and 5-10 silk worms daily. I came across an interview about an over weight cham would live a short life and have a painful death... I will put some photos of him so maybe you guys can help me see if he looks healthy or over weight !? I also started to bring him out to the balcony to have the natural UVB. The first time I brought him out for an hour (7-8am) and then now I will have him out from 7-9:30am depends on the weather. He’s been pretty easy to handle and he doesn’t turn dark when he’s on my hand. Although I am still adjusting my branches and things inside the cage ( mixture of vines and real plants and branches) I notice that ever since I started to handle him more often, he climbs down to the right lower side of the cage and trying to climb on the acrylic front and when he realize it was slippery, he would just climb back up... is he just curious as the right side has tv and other items next to it or is there anything I can do to change the set up? I thought chameleons climbing on screen means they are not happy with the environment. Is it something I should worry about?( his current cage is 45x 45 x 80cm. I am working on a bigger cage130 x 37 x 56cm)
Here are some photos and please feel free to give me any advice or feedback :) Sorry for the lengthy post... thanks for reading and hope you all have a great weekend ❤
Joy
 

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KRGEE21

Avid Member
Hello and welcome. The forums are a great source of information. Have you checked out all of the care sheets?

A couple of things I see that should be adjusted.
1. Calcium with d3 should only be given once every two weeks. The same with a multivitamin. Calcium without d3 ok to give at nearly every feeding.
Or you can use an all in one such as repashey calcium plus loD
2. You mentioned upgrading his enclosure soon. When you do you should upgrade the lighting to a linear uvb bulb.
3. How are you providing his water?

If you could fill out this form other keepers who are more experienced with Panthers may see some things that could help you.

Chameleon Info:
  • Your Chameleon - The species, sex, and age of your chameleon. How long has it been in your care?
  • Handling - How often do you handle your chameleon?
  • Feeding - What are you feeding your cham? What amount? What is the schedule? How are you gut-loading your feeders?
  • Supplements - What brand and type of calcium and vitamin products are you dusting your feeders with and what is the schedule?
  • Watering - What kind of watering technique do you use? How often and how long to you mist? Do you see your chameleon drinking?
  • Fecal Description - Briefly note colors and consistency from recent droppings. Has this chameleon ever been tested for parasites?
  • History - Any previous information about your cham that might be useful to others when trying to help you.

Cage Info:
  • Cage Type - Describe your cage (Glass, Screen, Combo?) What are the dimensions?
  • Lighting - What brand, model, and types of lighting are you using? What is your daily lighting schedule?
  • Temperature - What temp range have you created (cage floor to basking spot)? Lowest overnight temp? How do you measure these temps?
  • Humidity - What are your humidity levels? How are you creating and maintaining these levels? What do you use to measure humidity?
  • Plants - Are you using live plants? If so, what kind?
  • Placement - Where is your cage located? Is it near any fans, air vents, or high traffic areas? At what height is the top of the cage relative to your room floor?
  • Location - Where are you geographically located?

Current Problem - The current problem you are concerned about.

--------------

Please Note:
  1. The more details you provide the better and more accurate help you will receive.
  2. Photos can be very helpful.&
 

Gordita0405

Member
Hello~~~ and thanks for the speedy reply and helpful suggestion~~~ I was advised by a reptile store to dust daily. I will get repashey calcium plus loD tomorrow ~ good idea about the uvb bulb~I will upgrade to a linear one for the new cage.
Here is my cham info:
  • Your Chameleon – panther 5-6 months old. I have been having him since 1st of july 2019.
  • Handling – Since I have only had him for one month, I didn’t handle him much for the first three weeks. Now I handle him every day or every other day. I take him out to the balcony and put him on the plants before 10am. I normally have him out from 7am to 9:30 am depending on the weather.
  • Feeding – I feed him crickets, silkworms and dubia. For the first three weeks he eats only gut-loaded crickets ( fruits, veggies ,and dry fish ) about 8-10 depends on the size. He has shed twice in the past month and during those days he still eats but less (around 5) I have introduced him dubia and silk worms and they are his fav now. He had 3 mid-size crickets and 5-10 1-1.5 cm dubia and 5-10 small size silkworms. I mixed hand feed, feeding cup and free-range in the cage. He eats off my hand too and prefers to hunt for his food. He eats from feeding cup as well but less preferred.
  • Supplements – see photos
  • Watering – I have a chameleon water cantina in my cage, a dripper with a timer ( 5:45 am and 5:45 pm ) I hand mist 2-3 times ( morning and late afternoon ) I am waiting for the auto misting system to arrive so I can mix it with dripper ( on leaves). I have only seen him drinking from leaves… yet from the chameleon cantina.
  • Fecal Description – He poops at least once daily, sometimes twice, normally in the morning or before noon with healthy moist poop( brown/dark brown with white parts)
  • History – P was kept with other panther babies at the shop I got him from. They open till late daily but ever since I got him. He goes to sleep before 7pm.

Cage Info:

  • Cage Type – combo with front acrylic and three screens. 45 x 45 x 80 cm. I am working on a bigger cage for him with the same combo type.
  • Lighting – see photos. Both uvb and heat come on at 6:30 am and off at 5:30 pm.
  • Temperature – during the day the cage floor temp range from 26-28 degrees and basking spot around 29-31. The lowest over night temp is around 24-25. It’s summer here in Taiwan so I use AC in the room to keep the temperatures I want.

  • Humidity – early morning and before lights off – 70-80. During the day (around 50-60)
  • Plants – a mixture of life and branches and vines. ( See photos )
  • Placement – in the living room in my studio. Good airflow with ac and fan.
  • Location – Taiwan ( Asia )

Current Problem
  • Is he healthy looking or overweight?
  • I am not sure if he is simply curious or something in the cage or next to the cage that makes him climb down to the right side from time to time during the day. ( see photo ) Today when the cage door is open he does the same thing so I put my hand in front of him next to the cage door and he climbs on to my hand willingly. He then realized the door is too slippery to climb. I let him explored freely but then he wants to climb onto the TV. The material is way too slippery and impossible to climb so I took him back to the cage. I think my current cage might be too small and as he is growing fast.. I should put him in a bigger cage soon.

  • Thanks again for the read ~
  • Joy
 

KRGEE21

Avid Member
Hi Joy,
My comments will be in green after your responses. Again, I do not keep Panthers so other members may have more to add.



Hello~~~ and thanks for the speedy reply and helpful suggestion~~~ I was advised by a reptile store to dust daily. I will get repashey calcium plus loD tomorrow ~ good idea about the uvb bulb~I will upgrade to a linear one for the new cage.
Here is my cham info:
  • Your Chameleon – panther 5-6 months old. I have been having him since 1st of july 2019.
  • Handling – Since I have only had him for one month, I didn’t handle him much for the first three weeks. Now I handle him every day or every other day. I take him out to the balcony and put him on the plants before 10am. I normally have him out from 7am to 9:30 am depending on the weather.
  • Feeding – I feed him crickets, silkworms and dubia. For the first three weeks he eats only gut-loaded crickets ( fruits, veggies ,and dry fish ) about 8-10 depends on the size. He has shed twice in the past month and during those days he still eats but less (around 5) I have introduced him dubia and silk worms and they are his fav now. He had 3 mid-size crickets and 5-10 1-1.5 cm dubia and 5-10 small size silkworms. I mixed hand feed, feeding cup and free-range in the cage. He eats off my hand too and prefers to hunt for his food. He eats from feeding cup as well but less preferred. I would not be using the dried fish for gut loading your feeders. I have read in multiple posts that too much protein in your gutload can lead to complications with gout in chams. See attached gutload page. Some people say that 1 dozen various feeders per day at that age is enough. Some will say feed as much as he wants until a year or so. My experience is that they will start curbing themselves back when they are ready.
  • Supplements – see photos. The Calcium Plus LoD can be used as an everyday supplement. I tend to be a little more cautious with my supplements, so I would only lightly dust about half of the feeders.
  • Watering – I have a chameleon water cantina in my cage, a dripper with a timer ( 5:45 am and 5:45 pm ) I hand mist 2-3 times ( morning and late afternoon ) I am waiting for the auto misting system to arrive so I can mix it with dripper ( on leaves). I have only seen him drinking from leaves… yet from the chameleon cantina. Members here do not generally support using drinking fountains(the cantina) in their enclosures. Unless they are cleaned thoroughly everyday they will get contaminants in them from feces, dead feeders, etc and will make your cham sick. Add the auto-mister like you are planning.
  • Fecal Description – He poops at least once daily, sometimes twice, normally in the morning or before noon with healthy moist poop( brown/dark brown with white parts)
  • History – P was kept with other panther babies at the shop I got him from. They open till late daily but ever since I got him. He goes to sleep before 7pm.

Cage Info:

  • Cage Type – combo with front acrylic and three screens. 45 x 45 x 80 cm. I am working on a bigger cage for him with the same combo type. I would say bigger cage, and soon. Minimum size 60x60x120 cm
  • Lighting – see photos. Both uvb and heat come on at 6:30 am and off at 5:30 pm. Upgrade to a linear UVB bulb when you upgrade cage, and I would switch to 12 hours on instead of 11.
  • Temperature – during the day the cage floor temp range from 26-28 degrees and basking spot around 29-31. The lowest over night temp is around 24-25. It’s summer here in Taiwan so I use AC in the room to keep the temperatures I want. I would try to get it a few degrees lower at night if possible.

  • Humidity – early morning and before lights off – 70-80. During the day (around 50-60)
  • Plants – a mixture of life and branches and vines. ( See photos ) I would add a little bit more cover for him.
  • Placement – in the living room in my studio. Good airflow with ac and fan.
  • Location – Taiwan ( Asia )

Current Problem
  • Is he healthy looking or overweight? He looks healthy to me.
  • I am not sure if he is simply curious or something in the cage or next to the cage that makes him climb down to the right side from time to time during the day. ( see photo ) Today when the cage door is open he does the same thing so I put my hand in front of him next to the cage door and he climbs on to my hand willingly. He then realized the door is too slippery to climb. I let him explored freely but then he wants to climb onto the TV. The material is way too slippery and impossible to climb so I took him back to the cage. I think my current cage might be too small and as he is growing fast.. I should put him in a bigger cage soon. Sounds like he's used to going outside now and prefers it to his cage. I would upgrade soon, or if you have the funds available ASAP. Check out some of the other threads here of peoples enclosures for ideas/set ups.
 

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Gordita0405

Member
Hi ~ THANK YOU SO MUCH for the helpful advice again!! I really appreciated. Got my repashey calcium plus loD last week and I’ll upgrade my lighting with the new cage for sure.

I’ll take out the drinking cantina. My misting system arrived and I now have both dripper and mister on auto timer. I also bought a cheap web cam and I see he didn’t go for the cantina even when he was alone.

I think you are right about him liking the outside~ or at least being curious about it. He is not a shy cham~~ today the weather was really bad here and windy so even when I took him out during the little rainless time, the wind scared both of us and I took him back inside. I left the cage door open and did a quick set up with some branches and robes that allows him to climb out if he wants to. I was at the same space working on the new cage. He checked it out a few times then he went on to relaxed on the branch and went on to climb up the rope and on to the curtains and the curtain bar. I just watched and gave him a branch to climb onto when he realized the AC tube was too high to reach. I will definitely make sure I check the other threads for enclosure ideas and have a good setup for his new home.
THANKS AGAIN!!! have a great day~
:) Joy
 

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