Skin Problem(s) need advice!


Avid Member
Hello everyone, I am need of some advice on the skin problems pictured below on my buddy Reggie Jackson. I have made a vet appointment for Tuesday but value the advice of experienced keepers and vets on this board above all.

Chameleon Info:
Your Chameleon - Jackson Xanth Male, approx 8 months. In my care for 4 months
Handling - 1-3 times a month, only for cage maintenance / cleaning. I gave him a couple of showers this month to help remove a difficult shed.
Feeding - Feeding 10-15 gutloaded (kale, mustard greens, butternut squash, bug burger, dinofuel) crickets daily. Mix in Phoenix worms and an occasional waxworm or superworm. Won't eat dubia, silk, or hornworms
Supplements - Dusted with plain (Repcal) calcium daily, with Repashy Cal+ every 7-10 days.
Watering - Mistking 3x daily. 7:00am-7:08am; 11:00am-11:08am; 4:00pm-4:05pm. Plus a dripper for most of the day. I rarely see my Chameleon drinking.
Fecal Description - Dark half is very normal looking. The urate is all white half the time, the other half the time is has some orange crystals at the top (5-10% of the Urate)
History - Had a very slow shed about 6-7 weeks ago. Tail and legs never seemed to fully shed, and the head shed very very slowly (which I know can be common in Jacksons).

Cage Info:
Cage Type - Reptibreeze 18x18x36
Lighting - 60w incandescent basking. Reptisun 5.0 linear uvb bulb (24")
Temperature - 83 degrees at basking spot. 72-75 degrees ambient. I have a digi temp gun to ensure accurate measure. Gets down to mid sixties during the night.
Humidity - Two digi gauges (top and bottom of the cage) Bottom stays around 80%, top around 70%. I have a room humidifier on a humidistat for an ambient room humidity of 70%.
Plants - Lots of live plants in the room. 2 golden pothos in his cage
Placement - On a rack. See last pic, cage on the left
Location - Cincinnati Ohio

Current Problem - The skin problems pictured, otherwise he is acting completely normal and eating like a beast.

About 90 days ago he started a shed. His tail and legs never fully shed and the brown spots seemed to be retained skin (first two pics). I showered him a couple of times and it remained and I hoped it would resolve itself with the next shed. It appears like dirt when he is a light color, and more like brown dead skin when he is dark. However, two days ago I noticed black spots on both sides (pic 3), and this morning there appeared to be a small patch on his head (pic 4).



Avid Member
It looks like your care is nearly ideal.

The only thing I would change is to reduce calcium to every other feeding and the repashy calcium plus to 1x a month
Montane chams are sensitive to supplements and the normal veiled or panther supplementation is oversupplementation for a Jackson's.
If you're ambitious, your cham would probably love you if you bred some land snails for him. Wild caught smails are known to harbor nasty cham-harming parasites.
Jackson's will eat the snails shell and all--and the shells are a natural source of calcium.

It might be a good idea to have an experienced reptile vet have a look at his skin, since things seem to be getting worse.

If you don't know of one with cham experience there's probably someone on the forum who knows of one near you.


Avid Member
Thanks Love reps! I am definitely going to look other snails... Sounds like a great solution. Plus, I like snails!

It is hard to tell if these spots are something to be concerned about or not because of the variety I see in the skin color in the pictures of Jacksons I have been reviewing online. Do any other Jackson owners want to chime in with an opinion?

Thanks everyone!


Avid Member
I just wanted to follow up on this post for those with a similar problem in the future who stumble upon this thread.

The brown spots on the tail turned out to be from the previous difficult shed and were not bacteria or fungus. They came off with the most recent shed. I had to give my jackson a few showers throughout the week that he shed, and everything was much easier for him this time as a result.

The black spots on his side appear to be normal markings for some jacksons. I have seen them in other's picture since posting and they have not gotten bigger.

The dark color on his head is also normal coloring for some jacksons.

The moral of this story is that jacksons have markings that can be a result of their difficulty shedding. They also have a wide variety of markings and spots that are natural to this species. So if you see something that looks odd, stay calm, it may just be normal.
Top Bottom