Sick veiled chameleon seeking advice


Chameleon Enthusiast
I’ll put my feedback in red. While having correct husbandry is essential for both of your chameleons and is something you need to work on as soon as possible, getting your little girl back to health is priority for her.
Chameleon Info:
  • Your Chameleon - female veiled chameleon about 4-5 months old had her for 4 months. From your pic, she looks older than that. Has she gotten her big girl colors yet? Those would be teal, orange/mustard yellow, etc.
  • Handling - She gets handled only when cleaning her cage 1-2x a week only if she chooses to
  • Feeding - We gut loud the crickets with carrots and banana peels and feed vita bugs super worms 2x a day morning and night about 4-5 crickets and 1-2 worms sometimes Not too bad, but you could definitely improve on both feeders and gutloading. Although it’s hard for me to really figure out her age (which makes a difference for feeding amount), you could add more variety and you only want to feed her once in the morning. To err on the side of caution, I’ll say to give her about 5-6 feeders daily for now. I don’t specifically gutload. I just keep my bugs fed with a healthy variety. I’ll attach both feeder and gutloading graphics to help.
  • Supplements - we dust the crickets with repti calcium from zoomed and give reptivite from zoo med’s for vitamins 2-3x a month This is where I suspect one of the problems is...she’s not getting any D3. The basic regimen and one I suggest for you since you already have 2 good supplements is: Calcium without D3 at every feeding except one per week. Then weeks 1 & 3, you’ll use the Reptivite without D3. Weeks 2 & 4 you’ll use a calcium with D3.
  • Watering - I have seen her drink and we mist the cage 2x a day. How long are you misting for each time? Usually we say to do so for at least 2 minutes to fully saturate their leaves as well as stimulate their drinking. Aswell as using a fogger every day. Are you using this during the day? If so, don’t. Cool mist foggers are great to use but only at night when the temps are much lower. Heat+high humidity can cause respiratory infection.
  • Fecal Description - has not been tested for parasites poop is white and dark brown solid sometimes slimy if we feed horned worms.It’s always a good idea to have a fecal parasite check along with a basic veterinary wellness check. Often there’s no sign of parasites until they’ve made your chameleon gravely I’ll.
  • History - got her and a male as babies they have their own cages.

Cage Info:
  • Cage Type - exo terra screened cage 24”x 18”x36” Not bad. I prefer to give much more space to all of my chameleons with at least a 2x2x4’ enclosure. It also provides more room for the lay bin.
  • Lighting - we have a zoomed light system with a 5.0 ubv and heat lamp. I’m in doubt that your uvb is correct. Also, each chameleon needs their own uvb fixture permanently. The standard is a T5HO fixture with either Reptisun 5.0 or Arcadia 6%. It will need to be around 8-9” away from your basking area, or the back of your chameleon when basking. T8 fixtures will work, but stronger bulbs need to be used as well as placement adjustment.
  • Temperature - the whole room stays around 70° All day at her basking hot spot it around 85 to 90° Depending on how hot it is here. Basking temps shouldn’t get any higher than about 80 for your girl. This combined with reduced feeding once she’s of egg producing age will help to slow her egg production, which will increase her life span.
  • Humidity - not sure exact levels but we mist the tank twice a day and use a digger for 15min every day Humidity is important to measure. Ideal range is between 30-50% during the day. At night when it’s cool, you can use your fogger and have your humidity reach 80-100% which simulates natural hydration via fog.
  • Plants - We stoped using real plants due to crickets laying in the soil. Now we have silk vining plants. Artificial plants are a no for our plant nibbling veileds. All it takes is one nibble of a fake leaf and they risk impaction. To prevent the crickets from free ranging in your enclosure, I suggest getting a feeding station like this. I truly love this feeder and it is as close to escape proof as can be. My chams love it to. You want to use safe plants, of which you’ll find a list here (along with other info on setting up your enclosure). Many also place stones on top of the plant’s earth, but they need to be clean and large enough that your chameleon can’t accidentally eat one.
  • Placement - the cage is on my sons dresser in the corner of his room. The top of the care is roughly 6ft off the ground Perfect! The higher they are, the safer they feel.

  • Location - Southern California
While I’m providing feedback for your girl, basically all also applies to your boy. Except for giving my male a slightly warmer basking temp of around 84, all of their care is the same. It is also important that your chameleons aren’t able to see each other. If their views of each other aren’t blocked, this can be a cause of chronic stress which can weaken their immune systems and their overall health.
While @kinyonga is the best person to help you with your poor little girl, I do suspect at least part of the problem is lack of adequate uvb and/or vitamin D3. Unfiltered sunlight and our uvb lights provide synthesis of vitamin D3 in addition to dietary supplementation. Without this, the calcium isn’t able to be processed into a usable form and it effects not just bones, but basically all body systems.

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Chameleon Queen
Thanks @MissSkittles ! Good job as always!

@MissSkittles said..."I do suspect at least part of the problem is lack of adequate uvb and/or vitamin D3. Unfiltered sunlight and our uvb lights provide synthesis of vitamin D3 in addition to dietary supplementation. Without this, the calcium isn’t able to be processed into a usable form and it effects not just bones, but basically all body systems"...this is likely part of the problem ...but I'm wondering if she's carrying eggs too. Closer photos will help us to see that...hopefully.


New Member
no she does not have any other color yet just green and black spots. She was maybe 2.5-3 inch big head to tail when we got her back in may this year I really do think she’s around 4-5 months and she’s half the size of the male. I will load another picture tomorrow my son is sleeping now


New Member
The lighting is a retisun 5.0 bulb on both of my setups. She has more energy today she is actually moving around and trying to hold on to the vines.


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Chameleon Enthusiast
Hi @Mcdoogles777, I'm still confused about your UVB light. The picture you shared shows a compact bulb. Chameleons need more UVB than those put out. This is the kind you want - a linear T5 5.0 Reptisun. The other brand is Arcadia 6%. But the shape is very important. Do you have one like this? If not, that's probably the source of the issue.

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