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Reptiles/please help with my chameleon I need advice


Hello. I have a baby veiled chameleon named charlie that I got about a month ago from petsmart. When I got him he had been in the back room because I guess he wasn't eating on his own so they had been hand feeding him. There was also no room in the store for him because they had too many other reptiles. I had already been interested in a chameleon and did all my research, so when I went to petsmart I asked if they had any and thats how I knew he was in the back..they said he was doing better and sold him to me. It probably wasnt a very good idea in the first place buying a sick chameleon. For the first few days I fed him by hand then eventually he started eating on his own. A few days later I noticed one of his eyes was closed all the time, then the other one closed a few days after that. He can't even see where hes going let alone see his I have been hand feeding him crickets, once I get his mouth open I put the crickets in his mouth. He hates it but has to eat I don't want him to die. I had a coil uvb light before, but I just got a repti glo 5.0 one of the 18'' ones because i've heard lots of bad things about the coil bulbs. I don't know if thats the problem though. I spray the tank about 3 times a day. The temperature is in the 80s with a basking spot in the 90s at night it drops to low 70s. I always dust crickets with calcium sometimes multivitamins. I read that the problem could be vitamin A deficiency. I've also been giving him repti boost every day with a syringe, it's got alot of vitamins plus mixed with water so I think he is hydrated. He sometimes drink when I mist him, not all the time but I don't think dehydration is the problem, his eyes arent sunken in. There is no discharge around the eyes, doesn't look like an infection. I think that it is most likely something to do with petsmart, but he looked healthy when I got him. I really don't know. I think I've tried everything at this point. What do you think ? Please get back to me asap I'm very worried. Thank you!

Hello Lara,

That is a possibility of vitamin A deficiency.  Which vitamin are you giving him?
I hate to have to tell you this but the Exoterra Reptiglo lights even the tube bulbs are not good either.  They emit the incorrect wavelength of UVB as well, which can damage the eyes.
I would go ahead & remove that light also, leaving just the basking light in for now.  Get some sterile saline solution to put in his eyes daily to help.
The better UVB tube bulbs would be either the Zoomed Reptisun 10 or the Arcadia D3 12% tube bulb.  Give it a week or two before putting another UVB light over him though to give his eyes time to heal up.

I would continue with the reptiboost as that should help him out.  It doesn't sound like he is dehydrated but the lighting can cause immune system suppression though.
Do you have any pictures of him?

Let me know how he is doing.



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Tracie Kretzschmar


I can answer questions pertaining to health, UVB specifics, overall husbandry care & supplementation, analysis of blood test results, and behavioral problems & handling. I can answer questions pertaining to bearded dragons, leopard geckos, iguanas, uromastyx & ball pythons. I can answer adeno virus related questions in bearded dragons, & then specifically about the testing methods as well. I am beginning an Pogona Adeno Testing Society in 2008 which will help to begin to start some standardization within the bearded dragon colonies of the breeders who choose to test.


I have been working with bearded dragons for over 5 years now, as well as leopard geckos, too. I am currently doing rescues, as well. I hope to be able to educate people prior to them purchasing an exotic pet in order to avoid any health crisis with them.

I have a master's degree in sports medicine & physiology, & 1 year of vet tech schooling, & am currently working on a reptile certification through the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council.

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