Sleeping All Day, No Eating, Shedding

Discussion in 'Health Clinic' started by Essergra, Jun 8, 2018.

  1. Essergra

    Essergra New Member

    I have a gorgeous Panther Nosy Be chameleon, about 18 cm long, 3 years old.

    For the last 4 days he hasn't eaten a thing, and I've barely seen him drink (not to say he hasn't). Just yesterday he started shedding, and today the shedding is spread over roughly half of his body.

    I've noticed his eyes are shrinking in just a little bit, too.

    Would the shedding cause him to not eat, drink, AND sleep during the day? Or a combination of these?

    I've kept the humidity at a high 60-80% consistently to help out. He's not aggressive at all, but just likes to sleep. His lighting schedule is quite normal - his light is on during the day from about 9 A.M. - 7 P.M., but his cage is right next to a window so he gets natural light. I turn off his light before the natural light goes out. ALSO, and interestingly enough, I took him outside today to crawl on some vines in my backyard which he loves, and he pooped! Totally normal poop and white yurate. I was surprised because he hasn't done that in 3-4 days (and hasn't eaten).

    Looking for help! Love the little guy!
    #1 Essergra, Jun 8, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2018
  2. makkatfloof

    makkatfloof Member

    Many chameleons get fussy and do not eat when they are shedding. Plenty of times my little one has also slept all day. But because of your chams age, it concerns me why he would be sleeping all day.
    Shrinking eyes is a sign of eye infection or clogged tear ducts. My boy, when we got him, had clogged tear ducts so bad due to the previous owner. In a matter of days, it turned into a massive infection that almost killed him.
    Not at all to make you fear anything, but clogged tear ducts can be either real easy to fix or real horrible to fix.
    Try putting him in the shower with the water luke warmish and the showerhead facing the Wall with the droplets hitting him. This helps my boy every time. If this does not help and he isn’t better in a day, take him to the vet. Like seriously, when I say that, take him ASAP.
    jamest0o0 likes this.
  3. Essergra

    Essergra New Member


    Thanks for the reply.

    I went out of town for a couple days and came back to find him awake and active during the day. He still hasn't eaten though, for six days. His eyes are also plump and normal, the humidity is high, so I assume he's been drinking.

    His shedding has made progress too, but he just hasn't eaten. Do you know how long these food strikes typically last for? How long can they last? What is considered a normal food strike time?

    makkatfloof likes this.
  4. jamest0o0

    jamest0o0 Chameleon Enthusiast

    Chameleons can go very long without food. Mine have refused food for around a week or so before. This isn't uncommon around shedding time. Sleeping during the day is a big red flag though. You also don't mention your misting times? Like how long, how many times, what method, etc. I would suggest filling out the help form..
  5. Syreptyon

    Syreptyon Chameleon Enthusiast

    What are you using for his light/lights? You only mention a singular light, which is concerning. I hope that was just a typo, but you need to be using a basking light in addition to a separate, linear UVB light. Having the cage against a window is fine, but that will not provide UV light, as UV can't pass through glass. You may already know this, but I just wanted to be sure because the original post is nonspecific RE: lights
    chameleonneeds and jamest0o0 like this.
  6. Tiosk

    Tiosk Member

    My chameleon has gone 10 days before i got her to eat again. Try 1/4” crickets for this is what got my little one to eat again.(y)
  7. makkatfloof

    makkatfloof Member

    As @jamest0o0 said, they can go long times without eating. Mine, when shedding, usually goes the whole shed and then days afterwards before he eats again. He may eat 1 or 2 crickets here and there or absolutely nothing at all.
    Reptiles have different metabolisms, which makes it to where they digest and take in their food differently. Reptiles can go a long time without eating because their metabolisms are slower.
    The rest of the advice so far given and mentioned on here is also really worth taking note of. Nonetheless, if he doesn’t seem better, just take him to the vet.
    jamest0o0 likes this.
  8. Essergra

    Essergra New Member

    Interesting. Here's the details.

    -3 Years old. Wild caught in Madagascar, too (sadly).
    -Heat is 80-90 with basking spot of 90 - 95 during the day. Have a single UAB light and a heat ceramic bulb. Turn both off at night. Temperatures are 70-72 during the night.
    -Cage is about 15x20x41. The sides are also glass, with the top as a mesh.
    -Humidity is consistent at 60-80%. The cage is tall enough I have a normal humidifier from Walgreens sitting at the bottom. I spray 1-2 times a day, because the humidifier keeps water dripping off leaves/walls on 1/4 to 1/2 of the cage throughout the day.
    -I usually feed him meal worms, as they're his favorite. I sprinkle 1x or 2x a week with non d3 calcium. Haven't yet used a multivitamin.
    -Because of our backyard set up (we have a lot vines), and I work from home, I take him outside probably 3-4 days a week. I leave him out most of the days and he just climbs on the walls. Located in Utah (dry), so I spray the vines with water 1-2x during the day and usually see him drinking. I then take him down in the evening.
    -I've only had him for one month. I'll be getting a multivitamin soon. I bought him from a breeder who took good care of him. I asked the breeder what could be going on but haven't heard back.

    His normal colors are light turquoise along the spine with purple/white stripes along the body. The classic Panther chameleon horizontal stripe across the body is usually white/turquoise when he's happy. I've noticed when he's upset or bothered it goes brown quickly.

    As I mentioned earlier, he's been moving around all day today which has been good. His eye (another story) looking normal and out all the way. His shedding has come along. But for 3-4 days now he's consistently had a brown stripe and darker colors. I'm not sure if it's cause of the shed, something else, or both.

    Just barely I found him resting on a vine that runs across the humidifier at the bottom of the cage. So his chin and upper body are resting on top of the humidifier. He's not on the ground..but being that low, and on more of a platform than a stick seems a little odd....

    At first I didn't mention it because I was first concerned about the eating, but last Thursday, I think, he fell from our pergula with vines all over it, and landed on cement. I didn't see it happen, I just came out to find him there maybe 5 minutes after it happened. I freaked out, but he was looking around normally, and when I put him back in the cage he moved around normally, but went to sleep. The not eating has been going on for longer than that...but I can't recollect correctly if that's when he started sleeping a lot..
  9. makkatfloof

    makkatfloof Member

    Ok so first thing, don’t keep feeling him mealworms as a staple. He should be eating crickets as a staple. Mealworms exoskeleton is extremely hard for them to digest and the nutritional value of mealworms is nothing. That alone may be your problem.
    Second thing, depending on how much your feeding him, you need to dust the feeders AT LEAST 6 days of the week (if you are indeed feeding every day). With d3 should be used once or twice a month along with a multivitamin.
    Third thing, if he’s falling, that could be a whole handful of things. The worst being MBD. If you think he is falling more than this once, you need to do something I like to call a “hospital bin”. Get a little plastic storage bin that is short and cover the bottom with blankets and some plants so if he is falling, he won’t hit the ground hard or from a distance.
    jamest0o0 likes this.
  10. kyle0417

    kyle0417 Established Member

    I personally think keeping a wild caught chameleon is a bad idea.

    I've also heard glass enclosures are a no go for chameleons and that screen cages work much better. You shouldn't be using a humidifier as a substitute for misting. Get a Mist King or mist the enclosure yourself at least 3 times a day for 2-3 minutes with a spray bottle.

    Don't feed him mealworms as a staple. I personally use crickets, but a lot of people here have recommended dubias and some other wacky insects. Get calcium dust if you haven't already.
    jamest0o0 and makkatfloof like this.
  11. Tiosk

    Tiosk Member

    I have a glass enclosure and I have no problem with it. I can’t have an all mesh one because I live in a low humidity area.
    makkatfloof likes this.
  12. Essergra

    Essergra New Member

    Oh, let me clarify.

    I said mealworms on accident, I meant super worms. I've also heard that crickets shouldn't be a staple, because of nutritional value?

    Anyways, he's not falling in his cage. It was a one-time fall when I took him outside. He fell from our outside pergula onto the cement. He seemed ok after, that's why I haven't taken him to the vet yet, but I'm starting to get worried.

    I was feeding everyday (he ate 4-5 superworms a day, with occasional cricket or two to subsitute a couple superworms). He has been on a multi-vitamin, just not for one month. If he was supposed to be getting nond3 calcium on all his meals, he was by the previous owner, but just for the past month he hasn't, so I'm not sure it could be a nutritional thing that serious.
  13. makkatfloof

    makkatfloof Member

    I switch my boy between a glass one and a repibreeze. Summer, he’s in reptibreeze. Winter, he’s in glass. It’s the only way to keep humidity in during the winter!
    People bash glass a lot but I feel like if it’s build tall like an actual chameleon set up and has extra care taken to it to make sure the air quality is good, it can be good.
    Even my vet was the one that suggested a second glass cage for the winter!
    Tiosk likes this.
  14. kyle0417

    kyle0417 Established Member

    I gutload my crickets with carrots, potatoes and apples. Makes 'em more nutritious.
    makkatfloof likes this.
  15. Essergra

    Essergra New Member

    I certainly wouldn't keep him, but he's already been caught from Madagascar, so someone has to take him.

    I've been going back/forth about the cage. I also told my exotic pet veterinarian about the cage set up /w the humidifier and he said it should be fine. The breeder also told me it would work as long as there was good ventilation. He's seemed fine with it so far, and usually has bright colors in his cage and is quite active. (Not saying this to justify not getting another cage), but it seems to be working.
  16. makkatfloof

    makkatfloof Member

    Whoever said crickets as a staple was bad was absolutely a liar. Any care sheet and any expert would pressssssss crickets.
    If it’s for only a month, yeah. Probably not. But nonetheless, for future reference, non d3 is basically a daily necessity if you don’t want your cham getting MBD.
  17. Essergra

    Essergra New Member

    If anyone has any ideas as to why his colors would change to more brown, why he would be sleeping so much, or, if sleeping on top of the humidifier near the bottom is a bad sign (as it's a platform, not a branch [is that bad?]) I'd love to know. If he's active tomorrow I'm going to keep going. Today he wasn't sleeping. If he sleeps during the day tomorrow much I'll take him to the vet.
  18. Essergra

    Essergra New Member

    Interesting, great!
  19. Mawtyplant

    Mawtyplant Avid Member

  20. Essergra

    Essergra New Member

    I've been reading that the cage should dry before misting sessions. Why is that?

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