Ongoing Costs

As I am just a young student, one of my concerns with owning a chameleon is the ongoing costs. Does anyone have any numbers that they can throw at me for what the yearly price of owning a veiled or panther chameleon is? Ideally from a Canadian buyers perspective? And, for that matter, what the price usually is for the initial enclosure setup. I have numbers in mind for both of these but I’d like to hear what you guys have to say just to be sure. Oh, and if people know what the added costs of a bio active substrate is and could tell me, that would be great too.
 

SharpShooter

Avid Member
It's a bit like asking how much a car is. You'll get a lot of answers.

When I total up my setups and average things out, we're looking at £1200-1300 per setup. (Mine are bioactive btw).

I buy all my feeders and monthly spend around £40 inc calci/vits etc. Additionally I spend another £15 on fresh gut loading. (We have other reptiles as well as chams so a single cham feed bill will be less).

So far I've had 2 vets visits with one of my chams. Thankfully nothing serious, but the point is you need ready access to funds to pay for any veterinary care.

If you can't afford the vet, you can't afford the pet!

I don't mean to come across as being offensive but chams are not cheap to care for properly and if cost is a major factor, they may not be for you right now.

Don't even consider that 'kit' you see in stores. They are no where near what's actually needed, hence sound a cheap option but are junk!
 
It's a bit like asking how much a car is. You'll get a lot of answers.

When I total up my setups and average things out, we're looking at £1200-1300 per setup. (Mine are bioactive btw).

I buy all my feeders and monthly spend around £40 inc calci/vits etc. Additionally I spend another £15 on fresh gut loading. (We have other reptiles as well as chams so a single cham feed bill will be less).

So far I've had 2 vets visits with one of my chams. Thankfully nothing serious, but the point is you need ready access to funds to pay for any veterinary care.

If you can't afford the vet, you can't afford the pet!

I don't mean to come across as being offensive but chams are not cheap to care for properly and if cost is a major factor, they may not be for you right now.

Don't even consider that 'kit' you see in stores. They are no where near what's actually needed, hence sound a cheap option but are junk!
Good to know!
 

absolutbill

Chameleon Enthusiast
I would also add to wait until you are done school and settled. What if you want to take an opportunity to study abroad for a year, or you find that you are spending a lot of time working and studying and can't give a chameleon the time it needs? I always advise people to wait because we see a lot of chameleons on here that are being re-homed due to school commitments. Take this time to study up and save up and you will be happier for it.
 

MrsM

Avid Member
It costs a lot more than I’d imagined. I find I spend 60 a month on my two for food and various stuff I find I need... plus I’ve had $220 in vet visits so far. Setup really varies but at minimum Id say 500 should be saved to start a non bio active bare bones enclosure plus all equipment. That’s just my experience though. If I had to do it again id save twice as much to get a better setup, and stabilize/ establish it for a while before getting a chameleon. Because once you have a chameleon you will want to stop at nothing to spoil them.
 

Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
I spent 2500 for everything for the first set up and all the essentials.. my second set up is at 1600 since I already have the mistking, fogger, solarmeter, etc... I have spent $400 at the vet so far in the last 7 months. I spend a minimum of $50 a month in feeders for 1cham monthly. I do not feed crickets so my feeders are more expensive.

So yeah to do it right for the Cham your going to spend some money.
 

jamest0o0

Chameleon Enthusiast
I spent 2500 for everything for the first set up and all the essentials.. my second set up is at 1600 since I already have the mistking, fogger, solarmeter, etc... I have spent $400 at the vet so far in the last 7 months. I spend a minimum of $50 a month in feeders for 1cham monthly. I do not feed crickets so my feeders are more expensive.

So yeah to do it right for the Cham your going to spend some money.
Let's be honest, most people are just going to let their dubias breed for next to nothing;):D
 

nightanole

Chameleon Enthusiast
Guess it depends after you get all your stuff.

A vet visit will be $75 just to walk through the door.
Crickets/supers will be $20 a month.
If you get into roaches, odds are $50-75 to buy enough for a good starter. After that its almost free if feed them left over greens and anything from the garden.
Bulbs are going to be $20-40 per year, per uvb bulb.
And then there is random things. I have chucked a membrane pump for the mister, that is 80% of the cost of the unit so $80. I have chucked a ballast, that is $25-50 "if" you can do it yourself, and the replacement fits else its whole new fixture time.
calcium/vitamin powder expires after 2-3 years depending on the manufacture.
Your "gut load" may run a few bucks a month.
 

Leighqt

Member
Cham was about £200
Viv about £500 with first set of lights
New lights£75
Food at least £10 pw ,I get a subscription
Vets bill last week £160 and I’m still not happy so will cost another £35 for follow up and then 65 when I request bloods.
Vines plants etc £30-40
Powders , etc on top as and when



All this in the first 8-9 months
 
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