The Karma Progress Thread

GoodKarma19

Chameleon Enthusiast
Hi guys! Some of the people around me (I won't name names haha!) are getting fed up with my excited chameleon related chatter and social posts, so in an attempt to curb my enthusiasm I thought I'd make a space to dump general health and progress updates. It might be nice to one day look back and see how far we've come... and possibly have my wrist preemptively slapped by someone who knows better if i do something silly and don't realize it!

Karma just spent his first full day home, and he seems to be settling in really well all things considered. He has been very tolerant of my fussing, bar a brief bit of attitude in the morning during syringe feeding and while I was mucking around with securing branches. He's been drinking a lot whenever he's misted, and seemed to really enjoy when I set him up in the shower for an extended watering session. It was pretty cute; I set up up a little stand with a plant, but he wanted to sit on my hand and lick water off my skin instead!

After his shower he had his first (to my knowledge) very sad looking poop since he came to to the clinic on Jan 2nd. The feces were formed but definitely on the dry side, and his urates were a terrible bright yellow orange. With the shape Karma was in when he first came in, I'm completely unsurprised. I suspect his next bowel movement will be greatly improved, and will monitor closely. I'll also set aside a fecal sample for testing, just in case.

His eyes are looking much less sunken and dried out today, and he was trying very hard to clean them out during his shower. I'll give him another long shower tomorrow in the evening after work, and I'll touch base with his vet in the morning. Karma briefly opened his better eye while showering, and it looks like he has a crusty mucus disaster going on. He'll likely benefit from a good saline rinse (or two or three...) so I'll mention it to the vet and bring home some saline and a tiny IV catheter sheath so I can actually get in there.

Worst case scenario we can sedate Karma and fully remove any debris in his eye(s), but I dont want to risk stressing him while he's recovering unless I really, really have to. Here's to hoping that rinsing, drops, and proper humidity helps!

~Amanda
 

Thehippie

Chameleon Enthusiast
great to hear that karma has a drinking response!!! im super happy for him, the urate and poop is unfortunate but it also means hes passing food which is good, you're off to a great start!!! keep it up!!!
 

GodricktheVeiled

Established Member
I'm so glad you rescued this poor little guy! This is exactly why I didnt adopt a Chameleon before I was able to properly care for him! Go Karma Go! And great job, Karma's new momma! :)
 

GoodKarma19

Chameleon Enthusiast
Karma is being incredibly accepting of being handled, and barely fussed when I had to take him out for feeding. He reluctantly crawled onto my hand when I touched his feet, and didn't puff, run (beyond briefly startling and leaning away), or otherwise change color. Today marks the first day that I didnt have to struggle to open his mouth. The second I had him restrained and touched the seam of his mouth he hissed and went for my finger! Yesterday, even with his morning grumpiness, it took quite a bit of doing to convince him to open his mouth. I'm pleased with his spirit! Once we fix his eye situation I think he'll do well. :)

I appreciate the kind words, guys! Chameleons are tough little critters to take care of, and I hope to use Karma's story to help educate people around me about the pitfalls of improper husbandry and the keeping of reptiles in captivity. I'm sure I'll end up pointing other beleaguered cham keepers in the direction of the forum! I've been truly impressed by the community response so far, and am very, very glad that my vet mentioned the Chameleon Forums!

~Amanda
 

GoodKarma19

Chameleon Enthusiast
I managed to snag an appointment with my vet tomorrow morning, and we'll determine what the next step(s) for Karma are at that point. I suspect that we'll need to sedate and clear his eyes later this week, but my vet is pretty heavily booked so we might not be able to actually perform the procedure until Thursday. He's definitely uncomfortable and it needs to be dealt with sooner rather than later, but I don't think it's an emergency at this point. We'll see what the doc says! I'll continue syringe feeding and daily extended showers in the mean time. Who knows - it might clear up on it's own yet! It's continuing to show signs of improvement.

On another note, I squared away the last of Karma's paperwork today and he's officially listed on my account as one of two pets that are eligible to be heavily discounted. This applies not only to services, but supplies as well! I'm really excited to look through the reptile catalogue in greater depth.

~Amanda
 

GoodKarma19

Chameleon Enthusiast
It was a bit of an experience bringing Karma to work with me (veterinary clinic) today so that my vet could have a chance to look at him. I don't drive and my ride bailed, so I had to pack Karma's little critterkeeper carrier inside of a cooler with a warm bean bag to transport him safely in the bus. The cooler stayed consistently warm (I fed a temperature probe inside to keep an eye on it), and Karma didn't seem overly stressed when we arrived. He was definitely a lot better looking than when I initially brought him home, at least! It wasn't ideal, but at least I managed to snag a ride home.

Karma had his eyes thoroughly flushed out with a saline solition, and quite a lot of gunk and debris came out with it. His nasolacrimal ducts were clogged up on both sides, and while the right is now mostly clear the left is likely still clogged. The tissue was pretty traumatized as a result of aggressive flushing and attempting to fish out this one stubborn hunk of debris. It looks a bit like he was sucker punched, honestly... poor little bug!
20190108_183814.jpg


Doc says the swelling should go down within the next couple days, and to keep her updated. We'll probably have to repeat the procedure later in the week.

He pooped while in clinic, and I'm happy to report that it was perfectly normal with beautiful cream urates! I took the opportunity to make a fecal float, and he definitely has pinworms. He had his first dose of dewormer today and is due for another (and a fecal recheck) in two weeks.

Other than his eyes, doc says he's not in bad shape all things considered. He'a gained just a bit over a gram since last Thursday, and things are looking optimistic. :) Now, if he'll just sit still while I apply this warm compress...

~Amanda
 

GoodKarma19

Chameleon Enthusiast
Karma's eyes are much less swollen today, and while they aren't quite open yet he's moving them around more regularly and trying to clean them. His better eye is opening just a crack here and there, usually when it's soothed immediately after misting, and he was definitely peeking at me during his shower! Some additional fluid containing particulates drained out of his left nostril, so he may not need an additional flush after all. I'll keep in touch with his vet and see how the next couple of days go!

Otherwise, Karma's energy and activity levels are improving, and he's increasingly interested in exploring his environment.

Go Karma go! :D

~Amanda
 

GoodKarma19

Chameleon Enthusiast
Karma had his recheck appointment and second nasolacrimal flush today. I'm happy to report that it went much smoother, and both ducts were flushed without any fuss. He was really quite the gentleman about it! Karma seems like a pretty good natured little dude, and not very easily bothered - assuming I'm reading his colors correctly!

Doc says that his eyes are definitely looking better, and that his overall body condition looks pretty good. I've been advised to keep in touch and continue with eye drops/showers/syringe feeding. Karma has definitely gained weight (14g, up from 12g) and is growing, so I may need to recalculate his intake to compensate. I continue to be optimistic for a full recovery. :)

I'll be ordering a MistKing system sometime over the next week, and I'll pick him up better lighting on Saturday. I'll also size up my living space and see if I can wedge a wire shelf in there so I can make a proper drainage system.

Regarding the MistKing (and I may make a separate post) - is it the starter kit that I want to buy, possibly with some extra tubing/another nozzle?

I'll try to remember to post a picture sometime soon. I'm getting remarkably attached him!

~Amanda
 

GoodKarma19

Chameleon Enthusiast
just buy one of those two nozzle dividers and attach some extra tubing to that and then bam you have 2 nozzles theyre called air tube connectors like these https://www.amazon.com/uxcell-Plastic-Adapters-Aquarium-Connectors/dp/B00WW9190M/ref=sr_1_20?ie=UTF8&qid=1547560130&sr=8-20&keywords=aquarium+tube+connectors
Oh, ok - thank you! I think I actually may have some spare aquarium tubing somewhere around here. I'll get the MistKing ordered sometime this week!

On a somewhat unrelated note, I'm starting to consider adult cages and have been eyeing up the Dragon Strand builds. It's a shame that the shipping is so high for me (solid $150 extra!), but they do seem to have the highest quality enclosures on the market and I can swallow the expense for a cage that will last Karma's lifetime. Unfortunately I live in a small, already very crowded space and I'm having a hard time figuring out where I'd put a minimally 2x2x4ft cage and all the fixings when I already have three birds and their large cages! Especially since I don't want to put Karma's cage within direct line of sight of my larger bird, Monty, in case she stresses the little guy out! I'll have to sit down and do some thinking and see what I can move around (if anything).

~Amanda

(Edited to remove a section regarding the medium atrium build - a quick forum search led me to the conclusion that Karma probably needs bigger)
 
Last edited:

GoodKarma19

Chameleon Enthusiast
Had a bit of a scare with Karma yesterday evening. I was walking him and his shower perch back downstairs after his hydration/eye cleaning session, when out of nowhere one of my birds came flying around the corner and scared the bejesus out of me! I stumbled and caught myself on the wall, but the quick jerking movement loosened Karma's grip enough that he slipped and fell about four feet onto laminate flooring! Thankfully, landing on his side seemed to have just knocked the air out of him and stunned him a little. I honestly thought for a second that I had killed him! I was really worried about him having possibly broken a rib or two, but nothing was visible or, for that matter, palpable. Karma's breathing is completely normal, and miraculously it didn't even bruise! I think I lost a couple years of my life. I'll continue monitoring him closely just in case.

Beyond that frightening hiccup, we're continuing to make slow but steady progress! Karma's getting just a bit stronger every day, and I can really feel the difference in his grip strength and overall behaviour! He continues to be really good about handling, which I'm very grateful for since he needs his drops three times a day (which I can occasionally give in his enclosure, pending location and willingness) as well as his morning syringe feeding. He seems much more receptive when he's aware that I'm going to touch him, so we've worked out a system in which I progressively tap on his branches to alert him to my approach. He's been more or less consistently clambering onto my hand when I touch his chest and gently tap his closest hind leg to encourage him to step up, and barely changes color when I take him out/restrain him for feeding and/or eye drops. Syringe feeding is going remarkably smoothly, and Karma does seem to want to eat. He allows me to place the syringe all the way back in his mouth, just into very top of his esophagus, and will willingly swallow around the syringe as I give him his critical care formula. The only time he grumbles is while I'm opening his mouth (his least favorite part), but he settles quickly and doesn't seem at all overly stressed by the ordeal. I like to pretend that he knows I'm trying to help, however unlikely! :)

Karma still isn't consistently keeping either of his eyes open, but he'll open them a slit directly after having eyedrops applied/while being misted and he's been moving them around a lot and cleaning them. They're not awful and sunken anymore, and I'm sure it's only a matter of time! He managed to expel some more mucus matter from his worse eye, and I'll talk to my vet today and see if she thinks I ought to bring him back next week for another flush. I don't think it'll be necessary, as he's responding well to current treatment, but I'll double check anyway.

Today, I'll be placing my order for a MistKing system, some better gutloading formulae (Repashy, ordered both Bug Burger and Superload), and lighting (20" high output hood w/ 6% Arcadia UVB linear bulb). Since it's a double hood, I also intend to get a good 6500k bulb for more effectively growing plantlife. One of my friends is starting some hoya carnosa clippings for me, and another is donating one or two pothos from her personal (organic!) collection. Once I upgrade Karma's cage, I'll rig up this fixture in my window sill and create a little free range. I'm sure I can pick up a cheap dome with a clamp and incandescent flood for a basking spot as well! :) The window sill's off to the left of my desk, and while it's near my little cockatiel's cage (~3 feet) I don't think she'll bother him. If Karma seems at all stressed by her hopping around, I can always put her cage on top of my other little bird's (~10ft away) and move one of my room dividers to block line of sight while he's out.

Finally, after some careful consideration, I've decided to purchase an Exoterra aluminum screen enclosure (36x36x18 deep). It's the only size/shape that will fit into my limited space that's also technically appropriate for an adult male veiled. Eventually I'd like to get a Dragon Strand large clearside atrium, but that won't be an option for at least the next ~2 years while I finish school and get a bigger place. I'll be ordering a Dragon Ledge kit, though, and hope to incorporate live plants into my next build! I'm thinking it'll be a mid spring/early summer project, pending resources.

I've been having a blast with this hobby so far! I just wish my space/resources weren't so limited. One day! :D

~Amanda
 

GoodKarma19

Chameleon Enthusiast
Guuuuyyyys! Karma opened his eyes! I'm not sure if he managed to clean his eyes while I was at work (his eyes were closed when I got home obnoxiously late), but after misting him for 5 min they both popped open and he immediately shot at one of those darn gnats! Like... BAM! Sniped it right out of the air! They squinted up again a couple minutes later, and they're definitely not happy eyes (goopy, a little misshapen), but they're getting better! I'll run to the store tomorrow and get him some feeders to start gutloading. I don't think it'll be much longer now before he can feed himself!

I'm one proud momma! Not going to lie, I teared up a little when he opened his wee little eyes and got that bug. :love:

Wish I would have thought to take a picture- I was too excited to grab my phone! I was super exhausted after I got home (crazy busy day plus some monster overtime), and now I'm too amped up to sleep :ROFLMAO:

~Amanda
 

CC's Baby

Avid Member
Hi guys! Some of the people around me (I won't name names haha!) are getting fed up with my excited chameleon related chatter and social posts, so in an attempt to curb my enthusiasm I thought I'd make a space to dump general health and progress updates. It might be nice to one day look back and see how far we've come... and possibly have my wrist preemptively slapped by someone who knows better if i do something silly and don't realize it!

Karma just spent his first full day home, and he seems to be settling in really well all things considered. He has been very tolerant of my fussing, bar a brief bit of attitude in the morning during syringe feeding and while I was mucking around with securing branches. He's been drinking a lot whenever he's misted, and seemed to really enjoy when I set him up in the shower for an extended watering session. It was pretty cute; I set up up a little stand with a plant, but he wanted to sit on my hand and lick water off my skin instead!

After his shower he had his first (to my knowledge) very sad looking poop since he came to to the clinic on Jan 2nd. The feces were formed but definitely on the dry side, and his urates were a terrible bright yellow orange. With the shape Karma was in when he first came in, I'm completely unsurprised. I suspect his next bowel movement will be greatly improved, and will monitor closely. I'll also set aside a fecal sample for testing, just in case.

His eyes are looking much less sunken and dried out today, and he was trying very hard to clean them out during his shower. I'll give him another long shower tomorrow in the evening after work, and I'll touch base with his vet in the morning. Karma briefly opened his better eye while showering, and it looks like he has a crusty mucus disaster going on. He'll likely benefit from a good saline rinse (or two or three...) so I'll mention it to the vet and bring home some saline and a tiny IV catheter sheath so I can actually get in there.

Worst case scenario we can sedate Karma and fully remove any debris in his eye(s), but I dont want to risk stressing him while he's recovering unless I really, really have to. Here's to hoping that rinsing, drops, and proper humidity helps!

~Amanda
You are a great person for helping Karma! Wishing him a full recovery.
 

GoodKarma19

Chameleon Enthusiast
I stopped by the reptile store and picked up some small crickets and a handful of bsfl for the next time Karma decides to open his eyes. Turns out that bird keeping ties in well with insect keeping! I make big batches of various parrot "chop" salad every month and freeze portions anyway, so I figure it'll work for the bugs too! This month's spread includes a tray of fruit (papaya, mango, apple, bit of banana) and a tray of veg (shredded carrot and green beans, will be adding leafy greens before serving). I'll be getting some Repashy Bug Burger and Superload in shortly, as well as a MistKing.

I was given a few healthy young plants (golden pothos, "pearl and jade" pothos, wandering jew), and have repotted them and placed them on the windowsill to grow. I'll incorporate them into his next cage, if I can't make them work in the current one! I'll have to order some of those magnetic plant holders.

Karma's eyes are definitely very goopy looking. I'll bring home some flush and see if I can loosen a bit of it before his next appointment tomorrow!
 

GoodKarma19

Chameleon Enthusiast
Doc says that Karma's looking pretty good all things considered, and says that his eyes are recovering really well! They're still a bit "sucked in", but they're free of debris and don't appear to have any sort of lasting damage. Karma's eyes have been open more and more frequently for longer periods, and at this point it all boils down to waiting for him to recover. He did look somewhat interested in a bsfl that I held up to him earlier today, though he didnt go for it. I'll continue syringe feeding and giving him his drops in the mean time! I'll try leaving some crickets and bsfl in a cup for him tomorrow.

I'm really happy with his progress so far! :D

~Amanda
 
Top Bottom