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Reptiles/Excessive mucus.


Hi Tracie,

My bearded dragon developed an RI a year ago at Christmas when he was going into Brumation. He was sleeping for around a couple of months. Once he finally woke up i noticed within a few days that something was very wrong with him. He displayed all the classic symptoms of an RI especially the flaring and laboured breathing. He was also reluctant to bask and would try and stay in his hide with a black beard. I would try and take him out and place him on his basking spot but as soon as i left the room he was away into his hide again! I called my vet who is an exotic specialist he confirmed an RI and put Louie on baytril and another drug to help him with his breathing, ( I have been looking for all information and treatment regime plus the names of all the drugs Louie had been on but i can't find it just now.) By the summer of 2014 Louie's condition deteriorated and he was admitted to the vet hospital where he was scanned x-rayed all blood work was carried out. The scan was clear but x-rays showed all bones to be normal but did show a few small dark area's on his lungs which the vet said he had pneumonia. The blood work was all normal apart from a low white cell count. Louie was discharged back into my care with new drugs. After three months of intensive care at home Louie was responding to treatment. I had been seeing my vet every few weeks during this treatment. It was decided to admit Louie again for final x-rays and blood work. The x-rays showed the dark area's had gone but there was scarring to the lungs which is permanent but vet was pleased with blood work. The infection has gone but has taken it's toll on Louie. Before Christmas there I custom ordered three new vivarium's for my reptiles Christmas. Louie got a 5ft wide by 2ft long by 2ft deep one and a new micro-climate 500 watt advanced heating system which has worked well for him but my problem is all the mucus that was in his lungs has now moved into his mouth area and is affecting him. He eats but after a few hoppers he is struggling with this excessive mucus that he starts flaring and blowing bubbles through his nose. It also makes him lethargic. I have bought a nebulizer back in October and use the F10 to nebulize him but it makes no difference. I was wondering if i was using to big a plastic tub? I came on to your site to see if there was any advice about nebulizing and you mentioned a drug called Tylan? Do you think i should try it? I live in Scotland and our winters are cold but this year Louie did not brumate he just dozed on and off. This mucus is a real problem and it needs to go!!!  I await your response.
Best wishes

Hello Karen,

Wow, Scotland huh?  I am sure the weather there is pretty brutal right now!
You may have been looking at another site with reference to Tylan.  I don't sell that one right now, but am going to be getting some nebulizers hopefully soon.
When you did nebulize, you just used F10, is that Fortaz or another medication?
Ceftz,Gentamacin & Tylan are other drugs you could consider.  Normally the baytril works very well also.  You can use any of those agents for nebulizing, too.  How long did you do the nebulizing for?  How large of a chamber did you use?  
He sure has been through a lot, but I am glad to hear that he did get rid of the pneumonia.
You can look for some bee pollen too for helping boost his immune system also.  How old is he?
Are you keeping his tank around 80 overnight & his humidity down to less than 20% if possible right now?
You can also get some betadine & dilute that down to look like weak tea & just get a q-tip to clean out his mouth several times a day to help the excess.  

Do you have any pictures of him?  That is excellent he has such a nice big tank now!  
Which UVB are you using for him?

Let me know how Louie 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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