Total newbie here!

Tyaeda

Member
Hey, I'm Ty, and my husband and I have made the decision to get a Veiled Chameleon, that we're going to name Mr. Pink (Steve Buscemi's character in the movie Reservoir Dogs) After weeks of research, we've placed an order for a little baby boy today. We went out and bought all the supplies we'll need to build his new mansion - a 2' X 2' X 4' screened enclosure.

I just finished my 5-page quick reference care sheet that includes all of the main points for caring for my new buddy, including many pieces of knowledge and advice that I've found here. Thanks folks! :)

I'll admit... I'm breaking the rules, because this will be my first reptile. I originally wanted a carpet python, but my husband is terrified of snakes. He really likes chameleons, and so do I, so this was a great alternative for both of us. At first, we had no clue that they were so high-maintenance, which is why we chose the Veiled species, because they seem to be the most popular amongst owners, and thus there seems to be a lot more care information available.

I'm fortunate to have 3 reputable dealers established in my area, and I've visited them all to get their advice and price everything out. Once we finally get our little guy, we know it's going to be such a wonderful challenge and learning experience! They say you shouldn't start with a chameleon, but with the advice from local experts, and hopefully the kind people here, we're confident that we will do a good job!

Can't wait to get to know some fellow chameleon lovers, and share some pictures of Mr.Pink once he comes home!

It's never too late to keep learning, so if there's anything you guys can think of, that I should know, but doesn't appear in most online care guides, please let me know!
 

jannb

Chameleon Enthusiast
Welcome to the forums. Chameleons are very special animals and have a way of getting right into your heart. Veileds are the greatest! They have so much personality. If you are buying a young one I would recommend a smaller cage to start with and build the 4 ft one for when he's older. I have a couple of links for you below to help you keep your little one healthy and happy.
https://www.chameleonforums.com/blo...-keepers-young-veiled-panther-chameleons.html
https://www.chameleonforums.com/care/chameleons/
 

carol5208

Chameleon Enthusiast
Hello and welcome! Jann gave you some great links to read. I agree with her on the smaller cage at first. It is mostly for feeding purposes, as if you do not cup feed it really can be hard for them to find the food as crickets will hide. Plus you may have a hard time finding him! Good luck and if you have any questions, you have come to the right place!!!
 

Tyaeda

Member
Thanks for the warm welcome everyone! I want to formally announce that we have purchased our new baby boy, Mr.Pink. He's about 2.5 months old, and he's one of the cutest things I've ever laid eyes on!

Now, we've gone with the large cage, that he can happily grow into. We've decided to hand feed him, which was very successful on our first try! He ate 5 pin head crickets right away! You are all right though, if the cricket falls, he cannot see it. We just recapture the bugger, and deliver him to his fate :p He is also drinking well from the schefflera plant we put in. He loves it, and even sits in it's umbrella like leaves.

He's a bit shy, but doesn't hide for long. But when he does, he has many different hiding spots that he can quickly choose from and get to.

The only thing I'm worried about is the humidity and heat. His basking spot is 80 degrees, but near the bottom (where he rarely goes) is closer to 60, which seems a bit low based on my research. Right by the basking spot I have a hard time keeping the humidity above 10%, but at the bottom of the cage it varies between 40 and 50%. Do you think that's ok, and what could I look for to see if he's too cold?
 

Tyaeda

Member
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Olimpia

Biologist & Ecologist
Super cute! Congrats!

In my opinion, that all sounds ok. It would be nice if the room ambient temp were closer to 70-75° but he has so many strategic temp places to choose from in such a large cage, that I think he'll be fine. You can add a few morelittle branches around the basking area so he has even more to choose from as far as temps.

And then humidity is always going to below under a hot lamp, so that's not unusual. As long as you're getting good spikes throughout the day, it's totally ok in my personal opinion. You don't need the cage to be at 80% all day long, every day.
 

Tyaeda

Member
Thanks Olimpia! I noticed he likes to bask within an arms reach of a good spot to hide, so I'll definitely be adding more foliage. I also got the stuff from the dollar store on the top of the cage (I didn't put it inside because it seems to have an oily residue on it) and I'm going to add more of that to the two back sides of the enclosure. I think it should help keep the moisture stable, and make him feel more safe.
 

little leaf

Avid Member
awwwww - what a cute baby :D, and soon you will have more...and more...they are addicting as potato chips :p I said I would have ONE, I now have 7:eek: :p
 

Tyaeda

Member
He's my little cutey boy! My one and only - especially considering how much it costs to get em all comfy. Now that I have him, all the trips to the pet / hardware / craft store were totally worth it!
 

Tyaeda

Member
I know! When I bought him from the reptile store the lady let me hold him for a second. My heart melted!
 

DekuScrub

Avid Member
stupid cute, whenever you have questions feel free to ask them. even though im on the forums infrequently there are a LOT of knowledgeable keepers on here.

sometimes its easier just to ask than try to research something obscure or not. the keywords dont always match up to the question and if youre doing a search on a general search engine there's a chance you will be exposed to misinformation. or incomplete tips.

one thing i noticed in this thread is that pinheads are WAY too small for him. im not sure if youre describing larger crickets as pinheads or if you are genuinely using pinheads (which are literally the size of pin heads)

a chameleon that age (im assuming hes 3-4 months) could easily take out a TON of pinheads in one shot. Upgrade to 1/4 inch at least.

You would be surprised at he size of feeders your chameleon can handle. its often recommended you use feeders no longer than the width of the chameleons mouth. i find that sentiment a bit reserved, in fact ive even heard of people removing the hind legs of adult crickets to avoid their chameleons mouths being poked.

and my tip. give him space but hand feed, the sooner you associate yourself with positive things such as food the less stressful (on both of you) handling will be in the future
 

absolutbill

Chameleon Enthusiast
its often recommended you use feeders no longer than the width of the chameleons mouth.

Actually it's the width of the space between their eyes. But I do agree that he could handle 1/4" crickets instead of the pinheads. Good luck with your new little guy - he looks full of personality. Also, a chameleon was my first reptile too, and he lived 4 years with me, so it can be done :D
 

Tyaeda

Member
Thanks for the advice! I guess they were not pinheads. When I purchased them they were mostly all around a 1/4 inch long, but now some of them are 1/2 inch (and chubby). I give him a couple bigger ones and a couple smaller ones at each feeding, and he hasn't had any difficulties. I love hand feeding him! He doesn't always think I'm awesome, but he's quite fond of the tongs I use to handle the crickets with. lol!

I've been on the forums everyday since I registered, and I'm so surprised and grateful for all of the friendly advice I've received so far! Thanks again everyone!
 
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