Reptiles/Chinese Water Dragon-Brown
Me and my husband bought his 9 yr. old son a Chinese Water Dragon for 2012 Christmas. He is an enthusiast when it comes to reptiles. He begged for it. I have just talked to him and he says he has been brown colored. When I originally researched this reptile, that doesn't sound too good, especially after all of this time. I'm worried, no disrespect, but his mother has 3 children and I'm not sure if she's able to assist in taking care of this reptile. What does the color brown really mean? How long is too long for him to remain this color? I'm considering bringing him to our home....
You don't say how long the CWD has been brown. If it is recent, many times they turn brown before shedding. It can also be normal colors, to an extent. It is generally a sign of illness and/or stress or improper care.
I'm sure you knew all this already!!
Temperatures are one of the biggest causes of brown color. They darken to absorb more heat. If the cwd doesn't have the proper temperatures in a basking area, he will remain brown.
A good site for all the cwd care is at www.triciaswaterdragon.com Also, they do need a proper uvb source. on the link above, the info is a bit outdated on uvb lighting so I do recommend that you read www.reptileuv.com for the best info on uvb lighting. If you are unable to pull up either site, let me know and I will give your the "condensed" version of the info.
Stress.. if the dragon is in a high activity area, it may be stressing him out.
If he is being handled too much, it can stress him out.
Too small of an environment... improper diet, temperatures, etc call all cause stress which causes the dark color but can also cause illness. I am not a fan of a child having full care of any pet if the parent is not 100% behind them, and watching/helping out.
I like your idea of taking the dragon to your home.
If the dragon is acting ill, then of course a vet is needed to find the cause.
Make any corrections in temperatures, lighting, etc and see if that helps.
One other thing... if they are using a white light at night for the dragon, that will stress the heck outta him. They need darkness at night. Make sure there is no lights on at night that the dragon would see..this includes tvs, monitors, etc..