STRESSED CHAMELEON PLZ Help

Nylah712

Member
I've noticed my cham being very different for the past two weeks. He has been staying near the bottom of his cage, sleeping in the middle of the day, and he has been a dark color. Please help!
Your Chameleon - Panther Chameleon, male, 3 years old, I've had him for 3years
Handling - Normally I would handle him about once a week but recently I haven't taken him out of his enclosed other than for cleaning it.
Feeding - I feed my cham about 4-6 crickets every other day. I give the crickets Fluker's Orange Cube.
Supplements - I dust the crickets with Repashy superfood Calcium plus once a week.
Watering - I have a mister king system and it mists 5 times a day for about 1-2mins. Recently I haven't seen him drinking.
Fecal Description - poop looks normal
History - no previous illnesses

Cage Info:
Cage Type - I have a Zoo Med ReptiBreeze 18x18x36
Lighting - For my basking light I have the Exo Terra Sun Glo Neodymium Basking Spot Lamps 75 Watts and I have the Reptisun 5.0 UVB (18 inch) as my UVB. The lighting schedule is from 7 am to 7 pm. (My timer recently broke so I have been manually turning it off and on so I've sometimes had it on for an extra hour if I couldn't be home in time)
Temperature - The basking spot is in the mid-80s and the spot where my cham is staying is around 65. The lowest overnight temp is the high 50s. I have a temp gun that I use for on-the-spot temp checks.
Humidity - I have a humidifier running during the day due to how dry it has been over the past few months. With that, the humidity has been ranging in the 70-60s. I also have a humidity gauge inside the enclosure.
Plants - I only have one live plant in the enclosure and it is a ficus tree. The rest of the enclosure is fake plants. I tried adding more but they seemed to die quickly.
Placement - The cage is located in the corner of a living room. It's a semi-trafficked area in the sense that It's in an open space. The cage is about 2-3 feet off the floor.
Location - I live in southern California about 10 miles from the beach.

Current Problem - My cham has been very stressed recently. I changed the lighting but it seems as though that wasn't the problem. I am getting a new timer and it should arrive by the end of the month. My cham has been staying in relatively the same spot and doesn't seem to want to eat. he has been dark-colored and isn't wanting to bask. I have provided a picture down below of his enclosure and him.
 

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Nylah712

Member
Ok your cham is VERY sick. It looks like severe mbd in the legs, I need specifics in what supplements you use. Do you use calcium with or without d3?
I was told when I got him to use Repashy superfood Calcium plus. It's an all-in-one supplement. Do I make an appointment with the vet if he has mbd?
 

Klyde O'Scope

Chameleon Enthusiast
I was told when I got him to use Repashy superfood Calcium plus. It's an all-in-one supplement. Do I make an appointment with the vet if he has mbd?
Yes, but healthy chameleons don't sleep during the day; something else may be wrong.
I think a veterinary assessment is in order.
 

Klyde O'Scope

Chameleon Enthusiast
Keep an eye on him, but don't add stress by hovering.
Take notes to bring to the vet. Record what's happened (from start to now) & when.
Notes are sometimes the best clues for a vet of what might be wrong.

Best Wishes 🤞
 

Nylah712

Member
Update! He's looking better, eating, and basking. He's still a bit dark but he has become more active in the past few days. I am taking him to the vet today just to make sure nothing is wrong. Here is a photo of him from this morning!
 

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Edmar1023

Established Member
Says u only give him calcium once a week? I think it’s should be calcium every feeding. Not once a week. May be MBD due to lack of calcium.
 

Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
@Nylah712 I am not seeing physical signs of MBD in your boy. I have gone through your help form as there are things that should be corrected.


I've noticed my cham being very different for the past two weeks. He has been staying near the bottom of his cage, sleeping in the middle of the day, and he has been a dark color. Please help!
Your Chameleon - Panther Chameleon, male, 3 years old, I've had him for 3years
Handling - Normally I would handle him about once a week but recently I haven't taken him out of his enclosed other than for cleaning it.
Feeding - I feed my cham about 4-6 crickets every other day. I give the crickets Fluker's Orange Cube. You need a better gutload. See image below. You can use a commercial gutload like repashy bug burger if you do not want to use all fresh. I also included a feeder image for you to have other options to add in for more variety.
Supplements - I dust the crickets with Repashy superfood Calcium plus once a week. Calcium plus should only be used at 1 feeding every other week. So only 2 times a month. Then you need to be using Calcium WITHOUT D3 at all other feedings.
Watering - I have a mister king system and it mists 5 times a day for about 1-2mins. Recently I haven't seen him drinking.
Fecal Description - poop looks normal
History - no previous illnesses

Cage Info:
Cage Type - I have a Zoo Med ReptiBreeze 18x18x36 This is smaller then recommended for a male. smallest cage size recommended for a male Panther is 2x2x4. I would consider upgrading.
Lighting - For my basking light I have the Exo Terra Sun Glo Neodymium Basking Spot Lamps 75 Watts and I have the Reptisun 5.0 UVB (18 inch) as my UVB. The lighting schedule is from 7 am to 7 pm. (My timer recently broke so I have been manually turning it off and on so I've sometimes had it on for an extra hour if I couldn't be home in time) IS the uvb the compact screw in bulb or the long linear uvb bulb?
Temperature - The basking spot is in the mid-80s and the spot where my cham is staying is around 65. The lowest overnight temp is the high 50s. I have a temp gun that I use for on-the-spot temp checks.
Humidity - I have a humidifier running during the day due to how dry it has been over the past few months. With that, the humidity has been ranging in the 70-60s. I also have a humidity gauge inside the enclosure. you do not want to run a humidifier into the cage during the day. This is increasing the risk of the chameleon developing an Respiratory infection. This should only be run at night into the cage when temps are coolest. Daytime humidity should be 50-60%. If you are having issues achieving this then there are other methods we use to help.
Plants - I only have one live plant in the enclosure and it is a ficus tree. The rest of the enclosure is fake plants. I tried adding more but they seemed to die quickly.
Placement - The cage is located in the corner of a living room. It's a semi-trafficked area in the sense that It's in an open space. The cage is about 2-3 feet off the floor.
Location - I live in southern California about 10 miles from the beach.

Current Problem - My cham has been very stressed recently. I changed the lighting but it seems as though that wasn't the problem. (question above about the UVB your using?)I am getting a new timer and it should arrive by the end of the month. My cham has been staying in relatively the same spot and doesn't seem to want to eat. he has been dark-colored and isn't wanting to bask. I have provided a picture down below of his enclosure and him.

Two main issues I see with husbandry are that your running a humidifier during the day. Have the vet listen to his lungs. hopefully he does not have the beginnings of a respiratory infection. The other issue is your not using calcium without D3. See feedback above for how you should utilize supplements.

Please note... Really check that temp where he is getting close to the basking bulb. He is able to get right up on it which is dangerous. If you place your hand there below the screen and it is uncomfortable for you then it could give him a thermal burn.






 

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Nylah712

Member
Update! I took him to the vet and they did a full check of everything. The vet said that it didn't look like he had any signs of mbd nor a respiratory infection. The vet said that he was perfectly healthy and that he might have had a bad shed during those two weeks. (I forgot to mention that he was shedding during those two weeks) My vet also said that if he starts to act up again, to get a poop sample.
 

Nylah712

Member
@Nylah712 I am not seeing physical signs of MBD in your boy. I have gone through your help form as there are things that should be corrected.


I've noticed my cham being very different for the past two weeks. He has been staying near the bottom of his cage, sleeping in the middle of the day, and he has been a dark color. Please help!
Your Chameleon - Panther Chameleon, male, 3 years old, I've had him for 3years
Handling - Normally I would handle him about once a week but recently I haven't taken him out of his enclosed other than for cleaning it.
Feeding - I feed my cham about 4-6 crickets every other day. I give the crickets Fluker's Orange Cube. You need a better gutload. See image below. You can use a commercial gutload like repashy bug burger if you do not want to use all fresh. I also included a feeder image for you to have other options to add in for more variety.
Supplements - I dust the crickets with Repashy superfood Calcium plus once a week. Calcium plus should only be used at 1 feeding every other week. So only 2 times a month. Then you need to be using Calcium WITHOUT D3 at all other feedings.
Watering - I have a mister king system and it mists 5 times a day for about 1-2mins. Recently I haven't seen him drinking.
Fecal Description - poop looks normal
History - no previous illnesses

Cage Info:
Cage Type - I have a Zoo Med ReptiBreeze 18x18x36 This is smaller then recommended for a male. smallest cage size recommended for a male Panther is 2x2x4. I would consider upgrading.
Lighting - For my basking light I have the Exo Terra Sun Glo Neodymium Basking Spot Lamps 75 Watts and I have the Reptisun 5.0 UVB (18 inch) as my UVB. The lighting schedule is from 7 am to 7 pm. (My timer recently broke so I have been manually turning it off and on so I've sometimes had it on for an extra hour if I couldn't be home in time) IS the uvb the compact screw in bulb or the long linear uvb bulb?
Temperature - The basking spot is in the mid-80s and the spot where my cham is staying is around 65. The lowest overnight temp is the high 50s. I have a temp gun that I use for on-the-spot temp checks.
Humidity - I have a humidifier running during the day due to how dry it has been over the past few months. With that, the humidity has been ranging in the 70-60s. I also have a humidity gauge inside the enclosure. you do not want to run a humidifier into the cage during the day. This is increasing the risk of the chameleon developing an Respiratory infection. This should only be run at night into the cage when temps are coolest. Daytime humidity should be 50-60%. If you are having issues achieving this then there are other methods we use to help.
Plants - I only have one live plant in the enclosure and it is a ficus tree. The rest of the enclosure is fake plants. I tried adding more but they seemed to die quickly.
Placement - The cage is located in the corner of a living room. It's a semi-trafficked area in the sense that It's in an open space. The cage is about 2-3 feet off the floor.
Location - I live in southern California about 10 miles from the beach.

Current Problem - My cham has been very stressed recently. I changed the lighting but it seems as though that wasn't the problem. (question above about the UVB your using?)I am getting a new timer and it should arrive by the end of the month. My cham has been staying in relatively the same spot and doesn't seem to want to eat. he has been dark-colored and isn't wanting to bask. I have provided a picture down below of his enclosure and him.

Two main issues I see with husbandry are that your running a humidifier during the day. Have the vet listen to his lungs. hopefully he does not have the beginnings of a respiratory infection. The other issue is your not using calcium without D3. See feedback above for how you should utilize supplements.

Please note... Really check that temp where he is getting close to the basking bulb. He is able to get right up on it which is dangerous. If you place your hand there below the screen and it is uncomfortable for you then it could give him a thermal burn.






Hi! Thank you so much for the feedback. I was running the humidifier during the day because I heard it was good if he was shedding. I was having trouble getting the humidity up during the winter seasons but I will stop using it. As for the UVB it is a long linear bulb. I checked the heating lamp but the temp was still in range and the screen wasn't too hot. As for supplements, I should use the D3 every other feeding, correct?
 

Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Hi! Thank you so much for the feedback. I was running the humidifier during the day because I heard it was good if he was shedding. I was having trouble getting the humidity up during the winter seasons but I will stop using it. As for the UVB it is a long linear bulb. I checked the heating lamp but the temp was still in range and the screen wasn't too hot. As for supplements, I should use the D3 every other feeding, correct?
Ok so you got some incorrect info on the humidity. They are dry shedders. So you do not do anything when shedding except keeping to normal healthy environment.

You will be using the repashy only 2 times a month. This is your D3 and multivitamin with A. So say the 1st and the 15th. Then at all other feedings you need to use Calcium without D3. repcal makes a without D3 formula that any pet store near you should have. You need this to balance the calcium to phosphorus ratio of the feeders. So you want to go buy calcium without D3.

This husbandry program would be a good accurate one for you to read through. https://chameleonacademy.com/chameleon-husbandry-program-getting-started-with-chameleons/
 

Nylah712

Member
Ok, Thank you for explaining how to use supplements. I feel bad for my boy since I was told by the breeder that can just use Repashy superfood Calcium plus for every other feeding. :( I will start the calcium without D3 today. Thank you again for the husbandry program as well!
 

Nylah712

Member
Ok so you got some incorrect info on the humidity. They are dry shedders. So you do not do anything when shedding except keeping to normal healthy environment.

You will be using the repashy only 2 times a month. This is your D3 and multivitamin with A. So say the 1st and the 15th. Then at all other feedings you need to use Calcium without D3. repcal makes a without D3 formula that any pet store near you should have. You need this to balance the calcium to phosphorus ratio of the feeders. So you want to go buy calcium without D3.

This husbandry program would be a good accurate one for you to read through. https://chameleonacademy.com/chameleon-husbandry-program-getting-started-with-chameleons/
Ok, Thank you for explaining how to use supplements. I feel bad for my boy since I was told by the breeder that can just use Repashy superfood Calcium plus for every other feeding. :( I will start the calcium without D3 today. Thank you for the husbandry program as well!
 

Beman

Chameleon Enthusiast
Ok, Thank you for explaining how to use supplements. I feel bad for my boy since I was told by the breeder that can just use Repashy superfood Calcium plus for every other feeding. :( I will start the calcium without D3 today. Thank you for the husbandry program as well!
So here is the thing... This supplement is an all in one... And it has a higher amount of calcium with D3 and A then the LoD version. Some breeders do utilize this supplement for all feedings. However not all chameleons react the same to supplements. What is fine for one may be far too much for another. Personally I do not believe they need every day all in one's I think it is overkill. D3 and A build up in the tissues of the body. So they can actually cause harm. So if a cham is having issues we typically look to supplements. Lethargic, lack of appetite etc.

Yours is a two fold situation with supplements because you were only using the repashy once a week. So the other feedings were lacking in calcium to balance the phos to calcium ratio of the feeder.

This is why I am suggesting going to basics with your supplements. He will still get what he needs from the Repashy in amounts that will not hurt him and now he will get the plain calcium without D3 at the other feedings.

I am not a vet though. So this is the main thing I am seeing with the info you have given. A reptile vet could do an exam, run a fresh fecal you bring in to check for parasites, draw blood to see if he has a calcium imbalance, and listen to his lungs to make sure there is not a respiratory infection from running the fogger during the day.

So while you can correct the things I mentioned if it is a major issue like a respiratory infection then you need a vet for antibiotics.
An RI can present at first with lack of appetite and not moving around much then progresses to gaping because they can not breathe. By the time they start gaping to try to breathe an RI is advanced.

Chameleons are really hard to figure out what is wrong when multiple husbandry issues are at work. So in the end I highly recommend an experienced reptile vet to cover all bases.
 
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