Panther Chameleon dull gray lost color??

Discussion in 'Health Clinic' started by leet13, Apr 3, 2013.

  1. leet13

    leet13 New Member

    Chameleon Info:
    Your Chameleon - The species, sex, and age of your chameleon. How long has it been in your care? Ambilobe panther chameleon, blue bar, male, approx 8.5 or 9 months. Have had him since Sept 28 2012. Bought from LLLReptile, shipped overnight fed ex.
    Handling - How often do you handle your chameleon? lately it has been once a day to let him climb in his cageless area by the window. yesterday he was handled 3 times because he wouldnt go back into the cage or stay in the area I made for him. He never did puff up at me or fire up so I can say all that handling yesterday probably did not stress him a lot.
    Feeding - What are you feeding your cham? What amount? What is the schedule? How are you gut-loading your feeders? I feed him crickets (med/large size), phoenix worms/butterworms/waxworms as a treat (its a combination of those types of worms 3x a week- 6 or 7 worms a week total mainly phoenix worms. I will cut back if his stools look too wet. I have 2 cricket bins and the smaller of the 2 has the ones I am feeding him that day. I give them bug burger, dino fuel raptor, carrots, occasional apple slice, some greens... oh and i feed him about 10 crickets a day.
    Supplements - What brand and type of calcium and vitamin products are you dusting your feeders with and what is the schedule? rep cal no d3 (1x daily) rep cal with d3 (every other sunday) , reptivite (every other sunday opposite D3), dino fuel raptor edition (sprinkled on veggies or bug burger).
    Watering - What kind of watering technique do you use? How often and how long to you mist? Do you see your chameleon drinking? I use a spray bottle with warm water that is dedicated to ONLY him... I spray for as long as I can until my hand gets tired. Everything is dripping by that point (I do not spray him directly). I also have a red solo cup with a hole in it that drips onto leaves... Sometimes i squirt water on his tongue as he is licking branches... He notices the dripping cup but I dont see him use that.
    Fecal Description - Briefly note colors and consistency from recent droppings. Has this chameleon ever been tested for parasites? Last dropping was yesterday. Fecal matter looked normal (i broke it open to see if anything was NOT digested and everything looked fine as far as poop goes...) urates are off white but previous was white. Never had a fecal done and I am wondering if I need to get this done soon.
    History - Any previous information about your cham that might be useful to others when trying to help you. His colors were AWESOME up until 2 months ago... nothing has changed with his set up except for his basking bulb burning out and it was promptly replaced with a 100 watt bulb of a different brand...

    Cage Info:
    Cage Type - Describe your cage (Glass, Screen, Combo?) What are the dimensions? 175 gallon reptarium mesh... 28x28x48.. 2 sides of cage have a loose covering of clearish plastic to help hold in more humidity during the winter here... I have a background on the rear wall that I made as well... so that leaves the front, top and bottom (elevated over a washer drain pan)... I believe it is enough for proper air flow... plastic can always be removed.
    Lighting - What brand, model, and types of lighting are you using? What is your daily lighting schedule? I have 2 UVB bulbs (18 inches each) that sit over his 2 favorite spots to sit under... Both are reptisun 5.0 bulbs. I have it on a timer... 7 am to 7 pm.
    Temperature - What temp range have you created (cage floor to basking spot)? Lowest overnight temp? How do you measure these temps? cage floor is 70 degrees... top of cage is 75ish... middle of cage is 72... Basking temp is 88 degrees. Lowest overnight is 65 to 68 degrees. I have an IR thermometer and 2 analogs... will get a digital with probe soon.
    Humidity - What are your humidity levels? How are you creating and maintaining these levels? What do you use to measure humidity? Humidity is 60% to 85% (after misting) I also have a repti fogger that does not directly blow into him even though he tries to get under it at times. It blows towards one of the sides of the cage. I also have a cool mist humidifier I use at night pointed AWAY from his cage into the room, mainly for sound so I can sleep. I clean it 2x a week really well...
    Plants - Are you using live plants? If so, what kind? I have an umbrella plant which has been in there pretty much since I got him... also a corn plant but its now just in the room out of his cage. I have a small pot with an orchid in it now too.
    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? It is in a the far corner of my bedroom. Thankfully my husband doesnt care. I picked that spot because of the windows near his cage have the most sun exposure... there is no real traffic in the room besides me, my pug and sometimes i let the cat lay on the bed. I only go in there during the day to mist/feed mathesar or make sure he is in his bedspot at night. Vent is at the opposite side of the room and I am pretty sure it doesnt even reach him because its not across from him but rather on the other wall.
    Location - Where are you geographically located? Southern New Jersey.

    Current Problem - Mathesar has been developing colors since around 3.5 to 4 months old... colors were looking GREAT up until about Mid Feb (had to look at the dates on my pics)... They started to slowly get dull looking and before you knew it he pretty much lost his colors. He looks pale when out of the cage... like he only shows pastel or light colors... inside the cage he is brown/white/speckled as if he is an overgrown baby... basically his colors look like he is a baby again.

    I had to look at my old pics to determine when this color change started because its been happening so slowly.

    The only thing to happen was his basking bulb was changed to a different brand and i somehow associated with color loss and bought another to replace the original type he had... I also try to get him by a window more although i know its filtered sunlight. wish it was warm enough to give him REAL sun but i will as soon as i can.

    He has a REALLY strong grip... he eats normally... poops normally... does not act different... i really do not know what I am doing wrong here... definitely something is NOT right.

    The pics I included of his colors were right before his last shed Feb 25th... He is due for a shed now I think but his colors have been fading SINCE!

    Thank you for your replies. I am freaking out over here.



  2. leet13

    leet13 New Member

    One last pic from 2 or 3 days ago... Its from my instagram with a filter but he pretty much looks like that... grayish color...

    Attached Files:

  3. leet13

    leet13 New Member

    I FORGOT! Top of his cage is 6 ft... its on an end table so its not on the ground or anything.
  4. biffle

    biffle Established Member

    I do not see anything obvious. Your husbandry looks sound.

    Have you tried reptaid? It has worked for me as a general mood/hunger booster.

  5. leet13

    leet13 New Member

    Well just to make sure... I went and got a thermometer/hygrometer with probe in there (he is eyeballing it now lol)... I also replaced both of his UVB tubes with new ones (his original are from when I got him in Sept so I guess they are due).

    Today he looked a *little* better... I had him out on his little cageless area where the windows and my plants are. He spent a lot of time climbing around there and getting sun through the window. He tried catching a lady bug which i eventually caught and put outdoors. Looks like the last few days in the sun from the window have helped him... his blue bars are showing a little more now (he is in his bed spot and looks a little less drab than before). If I am only *thinking* that he looks better now then thats ok too because I love the hell out of him and have been stressing a lot over the whole color loss thing.

    I went nuts with my reptarium and cut through the mesh so that the uvb tubes can shine directly into it without passing through the mesh. It looks pretty ugly but at least i know he will be getting more uvb that way. Got a couple more things to do tomorrow.

    I hope that all he needs is some REAL sunlight... I cannot wait for a warm enough day.
  6. Dez

    Dez Chamalot Chameleons

    Real sun may do the trick. I have had this happen with two of my panthers on two different times. 2 weeks in the outdoor cages made the color come back
  7. pssh

    pssh New Member

    What are you temps like outside? If it is at least 65 or so, you can try opening the window (make sure he absolutely cannot get out. A screen would be a good idea if it doesnt already have one.) And keep a heat lamp shining on the basking spot so he can get some natural UVB while still keeping warm from the lamp.

    Some chameleons will go through a dull phase as they reach teenager age, but definitely make sure it isnt something else causing the problem. I also like reptaid as a general booster. Maybe you could try it and see if it does anything.
  8. tkilgour

    tkilgour Member

    I think you have a very pretty chameleon. It seems as if your care is okay. Personally, I'd go with the natural sun recommendations. From what you filled out in the form everything is spot on. You would be amazed by the power of the sun.

    You can also boost it's overall health with diet and I see you are already using bug burger and dinofuel with your fruits and vegetables. It's essential to gut load your bugs with nutritional foods. For example, dandelion, clover, hemp seeds, spirulina algae, bee pollen, turmeric root, almonds, etc. Many of these you are already using because of the BB and DF. Foods like these are packed with carotenoids, have natural antibiotic, antifungal, and anti-viral properties. They also increase blood flow. Possibly, try using additional feeders. Like silk worms, hornworms, B. dubia, and blue bottle flies. Variety is essential. I think overall your little guy is very pretty and you have little to worry about. They go through phases like this, then one day they are bright again.
  9. tracysimpson

    tracysimpson New Member

    what kinds of plants do you have??
  10. leet13

    leet13 New Member

    This coming Monday will be in the 70s!!!!!! I am definitely taking him outside in that!

    Thanks for the replies... I was seriously stressing over him so much!!! I will get more variety in his gutload too.

    @tracysimpson In his cage I have an umbrella plant and an orchid.. outside of it I have a corn plant but he doesnt really use it at all. By my window there is some eggcrate which is hanging down from the curtain rod where I have 2 passiflora climbing up (they will go outside when its warm enough)... he doesnt climb on those plants but rather the eggcrate and a few sticks I have that are attached to that. I have a few other plants on a bench under the window too (night blooming jasmine, some seedlings I am starting for this year <-- covered in plastic so he doesnt touch them).
  11. leet13

    leet13 New Member

    Just ordered some Reptaid to give it a shot... thought I was seeing some improvement but he is really brown today. I will take him out to get real sun on Monday and Tuesday (will be in the low 70s). Hope it perks him up a bit...

    Anyone else have any more suggestions for me on this losing color issue?
  12. pssh

    pssh New Member

    You can try feeding his feeders a wider variety of healthy fruits and veggies, and maybe some repashy superpig for dusting. Superpig is supposed to help with brighter colors, but I don't know how much it will actually help on a chameleon, and an animal that gets a good variety of natural nutrients will generally show more color because they are healthier.
  13. tamarasimovic

    tamarasimovic New Member

  14. junglefries

    junglefries Established Member

    Been there and done that. i too have found, that a new cage setup or outdoor vacation can be helpful for the 'blues'. Just give him some time and he'll be back in no time. if not, i got a number for a great cham shrink.

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