Sick Cham

Ookamii

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Oct 6, 2010
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I have a young female Veiled Chameleon, shes acting really sick right now, she has alot of white crust comming out of her nose, she is real shaky, and is staying dark green/black. We give her crickets bought from petco, and Mustard greens every day, i mist her several times a day, and even change out her water bowl twice a day to insure its fresh. I also take her out side for 10 min 4-5 times a day to give her natural sun light. Normaly when i mist her she drinks the water off her nose and any thing around her, today shes refused to do that, and when i switched out her water bowl it didnt look like she drank any of it at all. shes also not nearly as active when i pick her up, granted my husband ticket her off making her gape to make sure she didnt have a mouth infection, and she tryed to bite him for it, thats the most active shes been today.
 

RoachGirlRen

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She needs to be taken to a qualified herp vet now. Chameleons are sensitive animals and any sign of even a slight change in behavior or appearence could be indicative of a serious medical condition.

Does she have a heat source? I noticed that you mentioned taking her out for sun exposure but did not mention a consistent basking spot in her vivarium. Veiled chameleons really need a nice warm basking spot to thrive. A few short spurts of sunlight throughout the day is not enough to provide the consistent, day-long basking temp that they need.

I would also vary her greens a little bit more once she is healthy. Mustard greens are a good source of nutrition, but a general rule of thumb when feeding any omnivore or herbivore is that varying your plant sources will provide the best nutrition.

Finally: Do you supplement? Because chameleons grow SO fast, they are very prone to MBD without supplementation.
 

BQC123

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RoachGirlRen has it exactly right.
Get to a qualified herp vet NOW!
Some details on your setup, care, age of animal, length of time you have had it would really help.
The bad thing is often they show no outward signs until the problem is very serious.
You really need to get a vet, and evaluate the care you are giving.
 

Ookamii

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She has a heating pad and a basking lamp in her cage, ive only had her a week, she had the crusty nose when i got her, i buy already dusted crickets from petco and super pet world over hear where i live. she eats Kale and Mustard greens and she has a asparagus fern in her cage, plenty (but not crowded) sticks to climb on. i did notice the crickets looked like ghosts tho, not the normal brown/tan color, could thay have dusted them to much? I dont know her age, pet co could not say, just that thay have tryed selling her for the past 6 months, and sold her to us for 25 bucks. Hears a pic of her taken two days ago. There are no Herp vets near by, the closest is a 2 hour drive away.
 
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RoachGirlRen

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If the closest vet is two hours away, I suggest you make an appointment for later today and start driving. Providing your animals with veterinary care - even if inconvenient - is a basic requirement of pet ownership.

I would not buy pre-dusted crickets, because my main concern is: dusted with what? Petco is notorious for the lousy nutrition of the animals in its care, so I would not trust their crickets as properly gutloaded OR dusted. TMK from talking to employees, they have a combo calcium/vit dust that they use in the store, which is a great way to provide an incorrect Ca:p ratio as well as cause excesses of fat soluble vitamins. You need a seperate calcium, calcium+d, and vitamin supplement rotated on an appropriate schedule.

It sounds to me like the cham had been in the store for six months and was showing bad health, so they discounted it severely to sell it quick. If you've had it less than 14 days though, I believe that by the adoption contract, they will cover vet care. Unfortunately it has to be a vet within their contract, so it may not be a great herp vet.
 

Ookamii

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If the closest vet is two hours away, I suggest you make an appointment for later today and start driving. Providing your animals with veterinary care - even if inconvenient - is a basic requirement of pet ownership.

I would not buy pre-dusted crickets, because my main concern is: dusted with what? Petco is notorious for the lousy nutrition of the animals in its care, so I would not trust their crickets as properly gutloaded OR dusted. TMK from talking to employees, they have a combo calcium/vit dust that they use in the store, which is a great way to provide an incorrect Ca:p ratio as well as cause excesses of fat soluble vitamins. You need a seperate calcium, calcium+d, and vitamin supplement rotated on an appropriate schedule.

It sounds to me like the cham had been in the store for six months and was showing bad health, so they discounted it severely to sell it quick. If you've had it less than 14 days though, I believe that by the adoption contract, they will cover vet care. Unfortunately it has to be a vet within their contract, so it may not be a great herp vet.
Yes i bought her from them but the only thing thay do is refund my money if she dies within 30 days of buying her. Currently i am broke, very broke, im 9 months prego, (due date is oct 15th) and i cant be driving that far away from my hospital right now, broke because of my own medical bills. I can look at sellin one of my husbands guitars and makin him pick her up when he gets off his 12 hour shift tonight and drive her up to the vet tho.
 

RoachGirlRen

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While nothing can be done now since the animal has been purchased already, I would strongly suggest that in the future, you avoid purchasing a new animal if you lack the resources to deal with an emergency. If the animal was bought last week, you were aware of the pregnancy and your financial status.

I would speak to the manager at Petco; last time I checked, corporate policy involved vet care for animals purchased within the past 14 days. Perhaps it is different for a discounted animal, but right now it might be your best chance of getting at least some kind of vet care. Chameleons are extremely delicate animals and without vet care, I do not really see the animal surviving this situation.
 

Ookamii

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While nothing can be done now since the animal has been purchased already, I would strongly suggest that in the future, you avoid purchasing a new animal if you lack the resources to deal with an emergency. If the animal was bought last week, you were aware of the pregnancy and your financial status.

I would speak to the manager at Petco; last time I checked, corporate policy involved vet care for animals purchased within the past 14 days. Perhaps it is different for a discounted animal, but right now it might be your best chance of getting at least some kind of vet care. Chameleons are extremely delicate animals and without vet care, I do not really see the animal surviving this situation.
I called the petco i got her from, he said her humidity level in her cage is not high enough, it needs to be at 67 and its at 50, he told me how to fix that, he also said if shes not better tomarrow to go ahead and bring her in and thay will look over her and treat her free of charge, thank you for the suggestions and the tips. And about the money situation, up untill yesterday we had 500 dollars left, but my husband found some way to blow all that. Also i did not buy her she was a birthday gift from my husbands uncle.
 

RoachGirlRen

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Glad to hear that they'll see her, though hopefully she can hold on until tomorrow. Be sure to keep her warm and humid (but with good ventillation), and see if you can at least keep her hydrated even if she won't eat.
 

Ookamii

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Glad to hear that they'll see her, though hopefully she can hold on until tomorrow. Be sure to keep her warm and humid (but with good ventillation), and see if you can at least keep her hydrated even if she won't eat.
Shes eating fine, its getting her to drink thats being a issue, her cage is at 90 degrees on the warm end, 70 at the cool end, wich the guy at petco told me 90-100 warm end, 70-75 cool end. im gunna mist her cage more "wich he suggested" to try and bring up the humidity, if that does not work he suggested raising her temp to 100 and get a misting system for her cage. but i think ill still bring her in to petco in the morning and have them look her over to make sure thats the only issue going on. Also last night i changed from a full water bowl to a drip system that goes over a few leaves and drips into her bowl, she drank alil last night after i did that.
 

BQC123

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Most chameleons will not use a bowl, so that was a good change.
Do some research on husbandry. Unfortunately chameleons have many special requirements that need to be met. Not a very good beginner reptile for sure.
Start here:

http://www.chameleonforums.com/

I hope it works out.
 

Ookamii

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Most chameleons will not use a bowl, so that was a good change.
Do some research on husbandry. Unfortunately chameleons have many special requirements that need to be met. Not a very good beginner reptile for sure.
Start here:

http://www.chameleonforums.com/

I hope it works out.
I am no newb when it comes to reptiles, ive owned several different types since i was a kid from normal anoles, tree frogs, iguanas, a 6 foot amber corn i just had to sell, a 4 1/2 foot retic.
 

RoachGirlRen

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He was just trying to provide helpful information, not insult you by assuming you were new to herps. It comes off as a beginner's mistake to have misconceptions about the basic care of a species, esp. since most seasoned herpers would read information from reputable sites and literature before getting the animal rather than relying on a Petco employee for basic things like preferred temperature, humidity, etc. after the fact.
 

Ookamii

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I did not take it as a insult, like i said before i did not buy her, she was givin to me as a gift, the day i got her i started reading up on the chameleons because i am new to them. i fixed her humidity and tank temp, shes bright green and movin around and drinking again. She still has the white crusty nose wich what i read is to much supplaments in her diet IE crickets where overly dusted, im switching to Meal worms and earth worms. Im still taking her to the petco by me to get her looked over to make sure she does not have any more underlying problems, and to make sure the white crust is deff from over suplementing.
 

BQC123

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I would recommend using plain old crickets, fed a proper diet (not fresh from Petco). Superworms are nuch preferred to regular mealworms, but I would limit those in the diet as well. Waxworms are usually taken readily, but not too many, they have a high fat content.
Roaches would be a great feeder if you can get them.
I have no experince with feeding earthworms. Do a bit of research on that.

Chameleons" - Their Care and Breeding by Linda J. Davidson was the best book I could find on chameleons. I highly recommend it, unless something better has been published since.

Again, I wish you the best of luck.
 

Elytra and Antenna

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The white crust is certainly from dusting the crickets but dark green and shakey are something else. I've never fed mine mustard greens but it doesn't 'sound' like a good food. Good luck.
 

jebbewocky

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I'd really reccomend getting a roach colony as well.
It's cheaper in the long run, and you have more control over the food source.
It sounds like your PetCo is run by decent people though, if they will help you treat it.
 

Ookamii

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cant and wont do the roach thing, *shivers* the most disgusting critter to crawl the earth, i cant handle them without screaming. I did read up on greens to feed to them, and mustard, collard greens and kale is all i found that was suggested, the petco refused to see her because the woman is trying to argue with me and say shes not allowed to treat her at that location because she was bought at a different store, even tho the manager at the other store said this store can treat her as long as he called the manager hear first, the woman admited he did call her yesterday morning. She also tryed to argue with me and tell me i didnt buy the cham threw petco but threw adoption and that means thay are not responible at all, even tho the paper work says "if your pet gets sick or dies withen 30 days of purchase date, bring it in and we will treat it or replace it."
 

RoachGirlRen

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Call corporate. Petco and Petsmart are HUGE on trying to keep up their image of being animal-friendly corporations, and 9/10 times if you call corporate about a violation of corporate policy or neglect/abuse in the store they take it VERY seriously.
 

hassman789

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Dec 2, 2009
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Yeah thats not right. So her manager approved and now she refuses. Somone needs to get canned!
 
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