T. quad gracilior Lower lip infection

guanagator

Avid Member
Tormund my young male gracilior has developed an infection in his lower lip over the last week so he got to go to the vet for the first time yesterday. No foreign materials were found but he did have a small amount of pus that was cleaned out. Docs guess was a scratch from a feeder that got infected. Probably a roach leg got between his lip and jaw. He received an antibiotic injection and I got some topical silver sulfadine and oral enrofloxacin to give every other day. Hopefully he's on the road to recovery now but unfortunately I feel like I've gone 10 steps backwords in our relationship. He's been shy since the start and we had got to the point I could get him outside without to much stress, now is terrified of me and hides as soon as I enter the chameleons room.

The best part about it the situation is I think I finally have a good chameleon vet within an hour of my house. First thing I saw walking in was a 30lb tortoise roaming the halls and a savannah monitor that was up next getting a tail amputation, good indications that Dr. Rossi wasn't just a dog and cat guy who also had exotics written on his sign.

I'll try and get some more pics when I'm treating him tomorrow, he showed more color than I've ever seen when he got fired up as the vet poked around his mouth. Got a clean bill of health otherwise and impressed them with his grip strength trying to drive those little red nails right into vets hand.
 

Meshelley

New Member
This just popped up on me veiled chameleon today. Is it similar to what happened to ur cham? He is my first chameleon so any help would be appreciated.
 

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guanagator

Avid Member
This just popped up on me veiled chameleon today. Is it similar to what happened to ur cham? He is my first chameleon so any help would be appreciated.
Not exactly on mine the infection was inside the lip causing it to bulge some and not align with the top jaw in affected area.
 

guanagator

Avid Member
@jajeanpierre have you dealt with this with any of your quad family? Just wanna be sure we are on the right track to recovery and I figure if anyone has had a similar issue with same species it would be good to compare treatments and results.
 

jajeanpierre

Chameleon Enthusiast
@jajeanpierre have you dealt with this with any of your quad family? Just wanna be sure we are on the right track to recovery and I figure if anyone has had a similar issue with same species it would be good to compare treatments and results.
@guanagator I've only dealt with a mouth issue once--with Tormund's mother. I noticed her lips didn't meet properly. I think it was both sides, but not 100% sure. It was very minor and went away on its own. My suspicion is that crickets can be really filthy. I've been more careful since keeping the crickets cleaner.

Did the vet tell you to apply the silver sulfadiazine to the inside of his lip?
 
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guanagator

Avid Member
@guanagator I've only dealt with a mouth issue once--with Tormund's mother. I noticed her lips didn't meet properly. I think it was both sides, but not 100% sure. It was very minor and went away on its own. My suspicion is that crickets can be really filthy. I've been more careful since keeping the crickets cleaner.

Did the vet tell you to apply the silver sulfadiazine to the inside of his lip?
He told me to apply the silver sulfadine topically on the exposed portion with a q tip and the enrofloaxin is given orally every other day for 5 treatments total over 10 days. I hate the smell of a dirty cricket bin so I try to clean it every couple days already. Vet said it looked like he had gotten a scratch inside the lip that then got infected so that's why I was thinking it was probably a roach leg. So far no noticeable change in his lip buts it's only been 48hrs since starting treatment. He has maintained his appetite and normal daily routine which is a relief.
 

jajeanpierre

Chameleon Enthusiast
@guanagator , did the vet want you to apply the cream to the outside (scaly) part of the lesion or inside? I want to know if it is something that is really bad to ingest.

If the oral Baytril doesn't work, ask the vet about giving it in injections. It's really caustic and nasty--it burns--to inject but one vet I went to said the concentration he was giving wouldn't damage the tissues. I can't remember how often I gave it, five or six injections every other day? It was for infections along the spinous processes of that newly imported orange-headed gracilior. His tail really blew up a few weeks after import, pretty much as I expected it to. He had been on oral Baytril (enrofloaxin) for a long time and it wasn't doing anything for the infection/abscesses. The vet (this was a new one who was board certified in something like wildlife medicine) said he felt they didn't absorb it well orally. The animal responded immediately to injected Baytril. Just be aware that Baytril can do a lot of damage to the tissues. I gave it just under the skin and didn't notice any damage. Giving injections to a chameleon is a CHALLENGE because their skin is so tough. You can bend a needle on their skin. This was a mature newly imported wild caught, so his scalation/skin is a lot tougher than any captive hatched one ever will be. Try to go between the scales. Ya, I know, easy. One tip--pull the needle out really quickly--the vet told me that the skin will snap back better with a quick withdrawal so the medication won't leak out.

With the mouth infection I had, I just cleaned it up and watched. Giselle (your babies' mother) took care of it on her own. Giselle is a rock star, though. She is a really tough, tough animal who has just thrived for me and produced a lot of really healthy babies.

Don't worry about him being annoyed with you. You will never be his friend! He'll get over it. I've got some pretty calm males and some flighty ones. The flighty ones often get better with age.
 

guanagator

Avid Member
@guanagator , did the vet want you to apply the cream to the outside (scaly) part of the lesion or inside? I want to know if it is something that is really bad to ingest.

If the oral Baytril doesn't work, ask the vet about giving it in injections. It's really caustic and nasty--it burns--to inject but one vet I went to said the concentration he was giving wouldn't damage the tissues. I can't remember how often I gave it, five or six injections every other day? It was for infections along the spinous processes of that newly imported orange-headed gracilior. His tail really blew up a few weeks after import, pretty much as I expected it to. He had been on oral Baytril (enrofloaxin) for a long time and it wasn't doing anything for the infection/abscesses. The vet (this was a new one who was board certified in something like wildlife medicine) said he felt they didn't absorb it well orally. The animal responded immediately to injected Baytril. Just be aware that Baytril can do a lot of damage to the tissues. I gave it just under the skin and didn't notice any damage. Giving injections to a chameleon is a CHALLENGE because their skin is so tough. You can bend a needle on their skin. This was a mature newly imported wild caught, so his scalation/skin is a lot tougher than any captive hatched one ever will be. Try to go between the scales. Ya, I know, easy. One tip--pull the needle out really quickly--the vet told me that the skin will snap back better with a quick withdrawal so the medication won't leak out.

With the mouth infection I had, I just cleaned it up and watched. Giselle (your babies' mother) took care of it on her own. Giselle is a rock star, though. She is a really tough, tough animal who has just thrived for me and produced a lot of really healthy babies.

Don't worry about him being annoyed with you. You will never be his friend! He'll get over it. I've got some pretty calm males and some flighty ones. The flighty ones often get better with age.
@guanagator , did the vet want you to apply the cream to the outside (scaly) part of the lesion or inside? I want to know if it is something that is really bad to ingest.

If the oral Baytril doesn't work, ask the vet about giving it in injections. It's really caustic and nasty--it burns--to inject but one vet I went to said the concentration he was giving wouldn't damage the tissues. I can't remember how often I gave it, five or six injections every other day? It was for infections along the spinous processes of that newly imported orange-headed gracilior. His tail really blew up a few weeks after import, pretty much as I expected it to. He had been on oral Baytril (enrofloaxin) for a long time and it wasn't doing anything for the infection/abscesses. The vet (this was a new one who was board certified in something like wildlife medicine) said he felt they didn't absorb it well orally. The animal responded immediately to injected Baytril. Just be aware that Baytril can do a lot of damage to the tissues. I gave it just under the skin and didn't notice any damage. Giving injections to a chameleon is a CHALLENGE because their skin is so tough. You can bend a needle on their skin. This was a mature newly imported wild caught, so his scalation/skin is a lot tougher than any captive hatched one ever will be. Try to go between the scales. Ya, I know, easy. One tip--pull the needle out really quickly--the vet told me that the skin will snap back better with a quick withdrawal so the medication won't leak out.

With the mouth infection I had, I just cleaned it up and watched. Giselle (your babies' mother) took care of it on her own. Giselle is a rock star, though. She is a really tough, tough animal who has just thrived for me and produced a lot of really healthy babies.

Don't worry about him being annoyed with you. You will never be his friend! He'll get over it. I've got some pretty calm males and some flighty ones. The flighty ones often get better with age.
The vet gave him an injection to start the treatment but the follow up doses are oral. He didn't warn me about not getting the silver sulfadine in his mouth just said to just rub it along the entire area, it's bulged out enough that it's getting some into the inside but mostly on the scaly outer lip. He was actually good for me this morning when I took him out and let me rub the silver sulfadine on without having to restrain him. If he doesn't improve some over the weekend I'll see about switching to injections. The first injection went into his front leg and he seemed to tolerate it ok. Within an hour of being home he was over at his feeder looking for dinner. I really appreciate your insights this guy has become part of the family and we want to get him back to 100%!
 

jajeanpierre

Chameleon Enthusiast
@guanagator PM me if you want the name and contact information of my vet. It isn't traditional use of Baytril because it is so damaging to tissues. Your vet might want to contact my vet over the strength. Baytril can cause big necrotic lesions at the injection site. Plus pain--it really burns. One vet told me it was like injecting chlorine bleach.
 

guanagator

Avid Member
@guanagator PM me if you want the name and contact information of my vet. It isn't traditional use of Baytril because it is so damaging to tissues. Your vet might want to contact my vet over the strength. Baytril can cause big necrotic lesions at the injection site. Plus pain--it really burns. One vet told me it was like injecting chlorine bleach.
Thanks Janet, will do if it comes down to another vet visit. Fingers crossed we are on the right track now. I read somewhere about using silver sulfadine for treating oral issues in Parsons chameleons wish I had tagged the article but it was before this happened. I believe they used it both on inside and outside of lip.
 

jajeanpierre

Chameleon Enthusiast
Thanks Janet, will do if it comes down to another vet visit. Fingers crossed we are on the right track now. I read somewhere about using silver sulfadine for treating oral issues in Parsons chameleons wish I had tagged the article but it was before this happened. I believe they used it both on inside and outside of lip.
If you ever again speak to the vet, can you ask if it is okay to use on the inside of the lips? I keep forgetting whenever I am in at the vets and you'll be in specifically for an oral issue so might remember. ;)
 

guanagator

Avid Member
Well Tormund has figured out that when he gapes he gets meds and decided to be a pain today. I tried dropping water on him to get him to drink so I could get the syringe in but he wanted no part of it. I tried gently pulling down on his gular but he stayed clamped shut. Eventually worked the tip of the syringe into the back corner of his mouth and got the meds in. So far he hasn't shown much progress which has me concerned but I know with reptiles it can often be a slow road to recovery. He's been shedding the last two days which I'm sure just makes him more moody. Going to give him a nice long shower and some outside time in the sun to hopefully perk him up some, finally cooling down enough the montanes can get some outside time. It's been a hot fall in N. Florida this year.
 

jajeanpierre

Chameleon Enthusiast
Well Tormund has figured out that when he gapes he gets meds and decided to be a pain today. I tried dropping water on him to get him to drink so I could get the syringe in but he wanted no part of it. I tried gently pulling down on his gular but he stayed clamped shut. Eventually worked the tip of the syringe into the back corner of his mouth and got the meds in. So far he hasn't shown much progress which has me concerned but I know with reptiles it can often be a slow road to recovery. He's been shedding the last two days which I'm sure just makes him more moody. Going to give him a nice long shower and some outside time in the sun to hopefully perk him up some, finally cooling down enough the montanes can get some outside time. It's been a hot fall in N. Florida this year.
I use a smooth edged credit card. I put the edge (make sure it is smooth and rounded) at the front of their mouths and then try to get their mouth open any way I can without hurting them. Sometimes I can make them gape, but often they figure out that really need to keep their mouths tightly closed just as yours has. You only have to get the mouth open the tiniest amount to slip the credit card in. I then gently work it back all the way. They usually will not like that at all and as they are chomping down on the card, I slip the syringe in and put the tip--again very gently--deep into the throat. I put it past the back of their throat. You can do a lot of damage to a chameleon's throat structures so everything has to be gentle with no force. If they bite down on the credit card, stop and wait for them to release. I'm careful to extend their head following the line of their spine so when I put the syringe deep in their throat, there is a straight line from the tip of their nose down their spine so the syringe doesn't damage the esophagus (people have torn holes in the esophagus by force feeding) or the delicate tongue structures. Chameleons have quite large gullets, so there is plenty of room.

The quicker you can do everything the better, which you know of course.
 

Ilike4hornedchams

Established Member
Good luck, I am sure he will make a recovery eventually with a concerned owner like yourself, please upload a few more pics when you notice an improvement!
 

guanagator

Avid Member
Good luck, I am sure he will make a recovery eventually with a concerned owner like yourself, please upload a few more pics when you notice an improvement!
Thanks. He was looking really good today showing off all his happy colors before I pulled him out for meds but was cooperative at least and gaped so I could get the baytril down his throat. The lip looks like it's going in the right direction still a couple hard bumps but inflammation is decreasing. He's going to get an extra long misting tomorrow was hoping for some outside time in the rain but it looks like it's all going to pass by us again without a drop. Weatherman was warning about storms this morning and it ended up being sunny all day. Must be nice to have a job where you can get things wrong all the time without any consequences.
 

guanagator

Avid Member

Got him to come down for a hornworm treat and managed to get the sulfadine on without pulling him out this morning. His colors and activity levels seem to be getting back to normal. As you can kind of see in this pic he is starting to grow a third set horns!!
 
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