prolapsed rectum

Discussion in 'Health Clinic' started by Marina, Jul 24, 2006.

  1. Marina

    Marina New Member

    Dear Lizard Experts.
    I have a two-and-a-half year old male Veiled chameleon.This is my first reptile and Iv’e been caring for him for two years. He has developed a problem for which I need the opinion of experience. It looks as if his rectum is prolapsing after a bowel movement. This has happened twice to my knowlage. I hang him upside down by his tail and it draws back in, but there is obviously drawbacks to this situation. Anyone care to hazard a guess as to the cause? Or advice to the solution? He has just been to a vet about obeisity and shortness of breath and has been on a diet lately. He eats well on crickets, a pellet of rice protein powder, green powder, vitamines and aloe juice. No kidding! He also eats juicy fruits like strawberries and watermellion. He spends most days out in a fig tree with a water drip. He comes indoors to a tree in a bedroom in the evening. He should be very healthy right???
  2. zinc99

    zinc99 New Member

    take him to a vet NOW!!! It will become infected and he will die. This happened to my old vailed.... There is an impaction most likley and it will kill him if you dont take care of it.
  3. Frank Castle

    Frank Castle New Member

    If it is a problem with prolapse. The vet may need to suture the prolapse back in his body. Either way it should be seen by a vet. As for the cause on why it is happening, I could not tell you. I read on it somewhere. Others on the forum may be able to help you more.

  4. Brad

    Brad Administrator
    Staff Member

    A reoccurring prolapse, even for short periods of time, is serious enough to seek the help of a veterinarian asap. How long ago did you visit your veterinarian?

    The best we can do here is look at your husbandry details and offer suggestions. This is not an immediate solution to the prolapse problem, but more of a way to help prevent problems in the future. If you want to post the details of your setup, [THREAD=66]this link[/THREAD] has some good suggestions.
  5. I've seen prolapses in chameleons, due to impactions, a few times. Even if the chameleon wasn't habitually overfed, one huge meal can be enough to do it (unless these individuals weren't truthful about how much they had been feeding!). From what I've seen, it seems that they can get a big bolus of food from one or two big meals, that builds up, and strains the smooth muscle tissue in the lower intestine/cloacal region as it passes.

    In other words: Overfed chameleons eat oversized meals and have oversized bowel movements. This can strain the muscles, which may make prolapse more likely.

    Of course, it could be a whole bunch of other things, too.
  6. Jamie

    Jamie New Member

    Definately Vet time.... ? though.. Are you sure it is his intestines?
    Why the rice protein powder and "green" powder in his diet? How much vitamins? Do you gutload the crix?

    I have a male panther that has had 2 intestinal prolapses and I think the cause(s) for the initial prolapse was a series of events rather than one specific instance.... But, in the case of my Archimedes, the "final straw" was 4 (appropriately sized, de-legged) hissing cockroaches at one sitting. He was in no way obese or overfed prior to this.. (I guess you will just have to take my word for that as there is no way I can prove it ;-) ) His staple diet was crix and silkworms, supplemented with hornworms, supers, wax, butter, roaches ect. and limited to aprox 5-7 insects every other to every 2 days from the time he was 10 months old.

    I won't take up space giving pages of all the details, but will say his obstruction/prolapse followed a change in gutload and diet. The diet change was a loss of silkworms which made up aprox 40% of his diet... IMO, that's a lot of "juice" to miss... but, I guess that is open to debate.

    I should have known better than to offer so much "chitin" at one time, especially during a time of transition..... Hindsight is always 20/20....
    Brad likes this.
  7. And to make things even more complicated - I have seen a few young chameleons with prolapses and the only thingi n common was that they had silkwomrs making up almost all of their diet.

    Not enough chitin, maybe.

    The hissers will do it - they have that extra hard shell, that's really wide. For hissers, I feed small.

    The main thing seems to be to get a balance between soft and hard - and just the right quantity too. I've had overfed chameleons, in the past. When they are overfed, but NOT fed 20 bugs at once, they have many, modest sized BM's. If fed all at once, even a lower overall amount, they'll have onehuge BM - sure to strain the muscles a lot more than the smaller ones.
    Brad likes this.
  8. ChameleonsTree

    ChameleonsTree New Member

    mine have always spaced their eating out all throughout the day...grazing here and there and usually having 2-3 left over at night..they have never gone and eaten them in a binge
  9. Marina

    Marina New Member


    Thanks so much for all the advise. It seems to be unamious that I am feeding him to much to fast. This is true, I do that in hopes of giving him his space to digest and not be in his face so much.
    Goolu is still going to the vet today and I am getting him some antibiotics just in case he has gotten an infection. His rectum looked very red when it prolapsed slightly again yesterday. He will also be on a leasure dining schedule instead of a stuff and run. Thanks again for all the info and such quick responses!
  10. ChameleonsTree

    ChameleonsTree New Member

    I know im going to get hammered for this...but...are you sure its his rectum and not his sexual organ that is coming out?
  11. Please give us all the details when you return from the vets. what did they say it was, how they plan to treat it, etc.
  12. Marina

    Marina New Member

    Goolu epic

    Well, the vet didn’t have time to see Goolu but instead prescribed a 10 day course of enrofloxacin. Also she did a fecal test for parasites which he has none of. He doesn’t seem to be as hungry as before. He is only eating 3 or 4 crickets and a small strawberry per day. This is his 3rd day on the meds. Could that be making his stomach upset? I know by reading info from the forum that this is still to much food for him but he went from 15 crickets 2 rice pellets and 1 big strawberry 6 weeks ago. I have been cutting him back slowly. The vet said too much weight loss at once can give him fatty liver. Last week before this prolapse epic he had been eating nine crix and a big berry or watermelon. Have I ruined this lizard by overfeeding him? He doesn’t strike at food. His skin is baggy. Will he ever fit into his skinny skin again? He still has fat arms and legs and as you can see by the avatar, he has a big double chin. I also must admit that I am a bit concerned about his recent disinterest in overeating. He spits out some crickets. Before this would never happen.

    Yes it is his rectum. The reason I know is because last summer I was weeding under his fig tree. He must have thought I was flirting with him and prepairing a nest. He came down and mounted my hand his hemi came out onto my wrist ;). It was quite a bit different in apearence than the prolapse. This tissue is much whiter and it was puffy with a blood tinge. Plus he had just pooped moments before.
    Brad likes this.
  13. Heika

    Heika New Member

    Where are you in Oregon, Marina? I am in Klamath Falls, and it has been difficult (impossible) to find a good exotics vet...

  14. Yes, your vet is correct. Reptiles, when off of food, go into a survival mode that is quite interesting. They take every calorie they get, and store it in their liver. It's simple, and it works, but it is an adaptation for the wild, not the cushy, easy lifei n captivity.

    When you have a fat lizard, and put it off of food for a few days at a time, every bit of food they DO get is stored in the liver. So, if you've got a lizard that's fat, and used to eat 10 bugs a day, you can't make it healthy by putting it on a diet of one feeding a week - that'll make the liver even fattier!

    The trick is to minimize the amount of food, but not starve the animal. Feed him 1-2 low-calorie bugs a day, and lots of greens and flowers. That'll keep his digestive system working hard, thus preventing the body from storing fat in the liver.

    By low calore, I mean lean insects - crickets, grasshoppers, roaches, gutloaded with greens and fruit - not a calorie rich, protein rich gutload. Avoid larvae - they're fatty.

    When my veiled got kinda fat when he was about 1 year old, I fed him 1-2 bugs, every other day, but he also ate a lot of greens and flowers. He lost the weight very quickly - far faster than had I just starved him!

    The trick to getting them to lose weight is to keep them eating, but cut the calories - far FAR easier to do with veileds than other species, as veields can eat plant matter - which is very low in calories.
    Brad likes this.
  15. daniellalalala

    daniellalalala New Member

    i have a veiled chameleon thats about 2 years old. i had a problem with him these past couple days, found out it might be a prolapsed rectum, so i took him to the emergency vet tonight when i found out how harmful they can be. the vet told me it can absolutely not be a problem from him eating too fast or too much. its from parasites or vitamin deficiency. it turned out that it actually was one of his penises sticking out. he strained it somehow so theyre going to amputate it.
  16. I am sorry to hear this. Can't it also be from impaction?
  17. daniellalalala

    daniellalalala New Member

    its possible i suppose. she didnt happen to say anything about that. he had his surgery and im waiting for a call from the vet any minute now. when i find out more info ill post the details

    so i just picked walter up and they said that they dont know for sure what could cause a prolapsed hemipene but its most likely one of two reasons. parasites or he got excited and left it out, and for some reason or another couldnt put it back in. he seems to be doing just fine, already somewhat active, ate half a cucumber slice by hand when i first put him back in his home =]
  18. vicg

    vicg New Member

    Panther Chameleon

    Hi I have a Panther Chameleon , We have had him in the family for about 4 to 5yrs. Just yesterday I noticed somthing coming out of his rectom. I went to the pet store they told me to soak him in warm suger water I did it went in but in the middle of the night he had a bowl movment and now it is out again will it ever be normal again? I am soaking him again and spraying him with a shed spray to help it go back in? What can I do?
  19. jastate09

    jastate09 Avid Member

    Get that panther to the vet.

    I have always heard it can be caused from over feeding.
  20. kinyonga

    kinyonga Chameleon Enthusiast have to keep the prolapse moist or it will become necrotic....and you need to get the chameleon to the vet to have it put back in and a purse-string suture put in to keep it there while it heals. He will also need antibiotics and you have to watch in case fungal infection sets in.

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