My name is XXXXX XXXXX I have been a Vet tech for 30+ years with special interest in reptiles and reptile rescue. If you could post the picture it would be great. YOu can use the paper clip icon in the tool bar if you have a PC, or if you have a pad or Mac please use Photobucket.com and post a link here and I will be able to see the picture.
Can you tell me if your UVB is a linear tube or compact coil?
Does Draco have any retained shed around his nostrils?
Do you bathe him?
Draco is our first reptile. We bought him on 10/13/2013 from Petsmart. The "reptile expert" at Petsmart told me my 29 gallon tank was too big for his age, so for two weeks we had him in a 10 gallon tank with a Zoo Med UVB Coil Bulb. I read everything I could about bearded dragons and quickly became freaked out by coil bulbs and the size of the tank for temperature regulation. So at two weeks, I moved him to the 29 gallon tank with a Reptisun 10.0 linear tube. I also have a ceramic heater at night suspended over the tank because the house does get cold. Once I moved him, he started rubbing his nose on his climbing stick and lost interest in food, so I thought it was either a shedding issue or stress from changing environments again. (He also had a shed issue on his right eye, that cleared up with a few drops of saline applied 3 x per day)
He may have retained shed around his nostrils. The skin all looks rough and frankly I can't see his nostrils.
I bathe him every other day in warm water. He loves to have water poured over his head.
Diet is mainly crickets, dusted with either calcium or multi-vitamin. Both are Rep-Cal brand. He is given a fresh bowl of greens and shredded carrots daily but I've never seen him eat them. Because he stopped eating the crickets I also bought some small wax worms (I know they're a treat food) just to see if I could entice him to eat. I can usually get him to eat a few crickets if I pull off their backs legs so they can't hop (gruesome, I know). Since his hunger strike I have days where I can get him to eat about 5 crickets, plus 1-2 wax worms. My understanding is that he should be eating closer to 30 per day.
I posted two photos to Photobucket. 1. You will see the top of his nose, the skin is dark brown and rough. 2. You will see his open mouth, with the top lip peeling back but no true signs of mouth rot inside his mouth as far as I can see.
I just searched online and found a nearby vet who sees reptiles, not sure if he is open on veteran's day. I am worried a car trip will add to his stress & compromised immune system.
Thank you for your time.
I just viewed the pictures. Please give me about 15 mins to type an answer. I am a bit slow and have a lot to type. Joan
The pet store did not wxactly give you great information. Dragon start with a 20 gallon long aquarium and then at about 6 months need to be moved to a 40 gallon breeder since they so need the floor space. What you are seeing is not stress related, but a result of what looks like retained nose caps where Draco is having problems breathing and it also looks like we may be dealing with some mouth rot which is ulcerative stomatitis. We can start with some first aid immediately, by giving a daily soak in a 50/50 warm water and Pedialyte soak. The soak should be at about 90* and last 10-15 mins. This will help with hydration. I would not suggest you work on the nose caps, since the area looks raw. You can however start to work around the mouth area. Please take some Betadine and mix with warm water to dilute it. Take a Q-tip and clean around the mouth and with the solution. Do this 4 times a day. Next you can apply a light coat of Neosporin to the snout area and the mouth area. This is some information on Stomatitis: http://www.anapsid.org/stomatitis.html
Now for feeding we want to start on soft food, like chicken baby food mixed with calcium powder, since it is too sore to eat prey right now. This will help until you get Draco into the Herp vet. I can locate some herp Vets with a State.
I want to give you my care sheet to help with husbandry. The supplements and diet may need some correction. The calcium should be plain without D3 and given 5 days a week and the vitamins 2 days a week. The Carrots are a sometimes veggie and can affect the eyes. I think the care sheet will help.
Bearded Dragon Care Sheet
1. 0-3 months- baby
2. 3-12 months-juvenile
months- sub adult
4. 18 months + -adult
1. A UVB light source-best is 10.0 Reptisun that runs the length
of your tank. Your dragon must have this light to metabolize calcium. If not he
will get metabolic bone disease, a serious condition. You can also take your
beardie outside to bask in the sun for 15 minutes each day if your temps are 80
degrees or above outside. You can purchase cages or reptariums from your pet
store. Never leave a beardie outside unattended.
2. A basking type light
that puts out heat and warmth above basking spot. Your beardie must have warmth
to digest food & thrive.
Babies: Warm basking log: 105-110 degrees F
Warm side 90's
Cool side: 85-90
Adults: Warm basking spot: 105-110*F
Warm side 90's
Cool side: 80-85
Measure temperatures with a digital probe type thermometer or a temp gun-these are most accurate. Stick on thermometers unreliable.
*Beardies over the age of one year old during
the winter months will go into a Brumation like most Reptiles and Herps. It is a
form of Hibernation that is governed by the weather and time of year. The lights
should be on a shorter period at this time. Fresh greens should be available
during this period. Do not feed live prey during Brumation.
Water: Mist your little one with the spray bottle 3-4 times a
day. You can also offer a small dish of water in your enclosure but be sure your
dragon is not too small to drown in it. It is recommended that when your beardie
is 2 months old you can bathe your baby in a small plastic container with warm
water- not hot. It will help them to stay hydrated. As they get older you can
move up to the bathroom sink and then to the bathtub. Very important for bath
enclosure to be thoroughly cleaned and rinsed prior to bath time. Clean between
dragons too if bathing more than one.
If you have any further questions feel free to ask. I like to
start people off with proper husbandry and then see if I can further
fruits, prey and Vegetables
Walnut shell Graphic: http://mrskingsbioweb.com/beardeddragngrossanatomy.htm
sexing bearded Dragons: http://repticzone.com/articles/sexingbeardeddragons.html
Please let me know if you need some Herp Vets and I will locate them for you. Also getting the Dragon into the Vet if taken in a rubbermade and covered with a towel will reduce stress. Make sure that you have a fecal done when you have the Dragon examined. Many coming out of the Pet supplies have parasites that need to be addressed. Joan
Thank you for your response. This was very helpful. I will go give him a pedialyte water soak. The only vet I have found in the Santa Cruz California area is Dr. Grudin at Ocean Animal Clinic. If you have other herp vet recommendations that would be much appreciated.
I have a couple of lists for Herp Vets:
Dr Gruden is recommeded by other Reptile Owners.
If it is cool when traveling you can take a tube sock and fill with uncooked rice, tie it off, warm in the microwave, wrap in a towel and use it to keep Draco warm on his way to the visit. If it is cool on the way back, they can rewarm it at the office for the trip home.
I just wanted to post an update for other Bearded Dragon owners who may be searching for similar posts.
Draco wounded his nose lunging at his reflection. The black spot was actually necrotic flesh that needed to be removed.
Twice a day I apply prescribed Silver Sulfa cream. Every three days, I give him a subcutaneous injection of Ceftazidime. If using Silver Sulfa cream on a wound, it is important not to let the cream build up. Draco is constantly basking while ill and the cream basically created it's own skin-like coating on his nose and stopped penetrating into the wound, so there was pus under the cream. Now I clean it with a watered down betadine solution prior to putting on the cream.
In 10 days, he has only once willingly eaten live food on his own and that was just 4 crickets. Unfortunately, this means he requires force feedings. First, I did a homemade slurry of live crickets blended with pedialyte and organic baby food. I now feed him Oxbow Carnivore Care, prescribed by my vet. The vet said that while he is ill, just focus on getting calories into him so wax worms are okay just to entice him to eat something even though they are more liked Bearded Dragon candy.
He was 7 grams when he was injured. Since he stopped eating, he lost a gram. It's important to keep a young bearded dragon hydrated first and then get food into him. I use a dropper and drip either water or unflavored pedialyte on his snout. He will continue to drink a drop at a time for a few minutes.
Filling a tube sock with rice and warming it for a trip to the vet was a great tip. I have been very pleased with my "Just Answer" experience.
Glad all worked out and hope he continues to improve! Joan
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