Veiled is on a diet!

filius_peter

New Member
Hello

My 5 month old male veiled hasnt been eating well. I give him crickets (1 inch) and mealworms but he doesnt eat them! I drop in a bunch of crickets into his terrarium and then i find that they are still there 5 days later. And a coupla times i saw him eating potting soil from the plant. This has been going on for some time. And today i noticed that his eyes are a bit sunken. Im not entirely sure and maybe im being paranoid but i think he has been hungry for some time.

What should I do? All the other conditions are okay. He has enough heat ( I have a 60 watt and a 40 watt lamp). He is active and alert. He is pooping as well, but mostly stringy stuff that looks like the potting soil. I think the problem is that he doesnt see the crickets because of the dense plants? I tried putting the crickets in a bowl where they couldnt jump out, but he didnt go for them either. Any suggestions on how to get my cham to eat more? Thanks
 

Jewel

New Member
I am no expert but I think the 1" crickets are to large for a 5 month old, they should only be the size of the space between his eyes.
The plant should not have potting soil in it because it can harm him when he eats those white pieces in it, either remove the soil and replace it with top soil or place rocks over the soil that are large enough that he can't eat them.
He may be impacted from eating the potting soil and too large of crickets.
As for the sunken eyes, he is probally dehydrated, are you misting him and do you have a drip system?
What are the temperatures of his cage?
If you could post a picture of him as well as his cage I am sure some of the more experienced members on here could help you with more advice.
No matter how dense the cage is he will find the crickets if he wants to eat them.
 
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roo_71

New Member
I am going to guess its either one of two things …

One, he is just being a veiled. My veiled acted that way at that age and I have heard the same thing from quite a few other keepers too. Try and get some different feeders such as silk worms, wax works, small horn worms, etc. He may just be sick of the crickets. As for the soil eating – that’s VERY common too with veileds. No one knows for sure why they do it but many of us think that the cham is looking for some type of supplement like trace minerals. To be on the safe side, I would try and replace the top soil of the plants with organic soil. Just laying rocks on the top most likely won’t stop it from getting at the soil. Mine would just zap the rock with its tongue to get at the soil – and that can be dangerous since a rock could be ingested and/or strain the tongue.

Two, there could be some sort of problem but I wouldn’t even fathom a guess right now. I really think he is just getting bored with crix though.

A pic would certainly help and is the cham still drinking? I also agree that one inch crix may be on the big side too.

-roo
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Enthusiast
You said..."My 5 month old male veiled hasnt been eating well. I give him crickets (1 inch) and mealworms but he doesnt eat them! I drop in a bunch of crickets into his terrarium and then i find that they are still there 5 days later"...if the crickets are too large (as was suggested) then he might not eat them. I don't use mealworms...so I don't know if they can cause problems or not...some people say they can cause impaction. If he's not warm enough, then he might not be digesting the food quickly enough and thus not be hungry. You said the temperatures are right...so I assume the basking temperature is in the high 80'sF? You didn't mention having a UVB light on him...do you? Try small silk worms, phoenix worms, a few waxworms (they are fatty, so not too many), small superworms, butter worms, etc.

Are you gutloading the insects? Dusting them with phosphorous-free calcium at most feedings?

You said..."And a coupla times i saw him eating potting soil from the plant. This has been going on for some time."...as was already suggested, it is thought that they do this looking for something that is missing from their diet...but there is no study that I know that proves it yet. At any rate, some soils/substrates cause impaction. You said that your chameleon is still pooping, so it hasn't happened so far. I still wouldn't risk it.

You said..."And today i noticed that his eyes are a bit sunken. Im not entirely sure and maybe im being paranoid but i think he has been hungry for some time"...have you had a fecal done on him to see if he has parasites? Are you watering him well?

Can you post some pictures?

I would recommend that you take him to a vet for a fecal and a check up.
 

FaunaBgirl

New Member
Just a thought on the soil eating. But it I were impacted, I'd make like a bird with a gizzard and do some dirt to try to break it up.
 

filius_peter

New Member
thanx

thanks for your insights. yes, i do have a uvb light on him. I will buy him some new worms and maybe he likes them. also ill get some smaller crickets, i just found out abt the size of crickets and the space between his eyes correlation. i dust the crickets with mineral supplements and calcium as well. plus i let the crickets eat some veggies for 24 hrs before i put them in his cage. i mist him at least once evey day and most times 2 or 3 times. pics right now not possible coz i dont have a dig cam :(.

Thanks again, i will try with smaller crix and different worms.
 
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