My Italian Wall Lizard is sick. It has some kind of respiratory problem. I took him to the vet and they examined him and

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Customer: Hello
My Italian Wall Lizard is sick. It has some kind of respiratory problem. I took him to the vet and they examined him and gave him injections 2 days in a row. He is home with me now and looks terrible. He is lethargic, he has his head tilted backward, he's opening his mouth, and taking deep breaths. I have him in a glass tank that's 2 feet tall, 18inches wide, and 18 inches deep. Ive been using 1 Blue daytime heat UVA 60watt bulb and one UVB 13watt bulb, on top of the metal screen lid. Im afraid since the vivarium is 2 feet the lamps haven't been heating they lizard adequately. I also don't know if the UVA and UVB have been getting low enough. He had been speaking most of his time on the highest point inside the tank, wich is still about 14 inches down from the lamps. I heart about a medicine called Baytril or using nebulizer. I just got a 100 watt Blue daylight bulb to replace the 60 watt bulb. I don't know if its going to be to bring.. too much uva. My little guy looks bad.. :(
Im looking for advice to optimize his lighting situation and if i can do anything to help cure him.
Thanks
Anthony
Answered by PitRottMommy in 15 hours 1 year ago
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PitRottMommy
15+ years of experience
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60,386 satisfied customers

Specialities include: Reptile Veterinary, Herp Veterinary, Exotic Animal Medicine, Amphibian Veterinary

Hi again, JACustomer. I have been a Veterinary Nurse for over 15 years and I'm happy to help. Please stand by while I have a chance to type.

I am so sorry that your guy is sick.

What are the hot spot, cool spot and overnight temps in the area where he spends the most time?

Can you share photos of your setup?

What is the humidity?

What substrate are you using?

What is the name of the shot that your vet has given for the last 2 days?

Have they run any diagnostics like x-rays or bloodwork yet?

Customer
Hello
Ive had him in this vivarium since October. The vivarium is 24 inches tall, 18in wide, and 18in deep. I had been using 1 overhead 60 watt blue daylight heat bulb and one 13 UBV bulb. I wasn't taking the temperature or humidity readings. Ive used coconut fiber substrate. After he got sick, i realized he may not have had adequate heat. Also im not sure how farthe UVB has been reaching down into the tank, due to the 24 inch height. The tallest branches are about 14 inches down from the lamps. The ramp he spends most of his time on is about 14 inches down from the lamps. I just bought thermometers , a temperature laser gun, and humidity meter. the humidity is so low :( (25%). the temperature seems to be between 68 and 80 at different points where he can access. I also just bought a 100 watt blue night heat lamp. Im sure it was going down into the 60s during the nights, before i added this night heat lamp. last night the temperature ranges were about 70 to 80. It seems like the day bulb was heating the vivarium more yesterday than today. Today Ive already misted his vivarium twice to keep the humidity up to about 55%, but it only lasts a little while.. then goes back to around 30%.
Customer
the shot they gave him on saturday is called Fortaz 250mg/ml. He is a tiny little italian wall lizard.
Customer
they di an X-ray too
Customer
no blood work.
Customer
File attached (G1ZP36G)
Customer
the liz is a metal screen
Customer
lid#
Customer
the lid is a metal screen.
Customer
the vivarium is 24in tall
Customer
im trying to figure out how to get the temperatures, UVA, UVB, and humidity levels right.
Customer
Ive already misted this inside of the vivarium twice today. the humidity is about 25% to 30% if left alone. After I mist the humidity gets up to about 55%, but pretty soon the moisture dries out and returns to 25-30%.
Customer
Do you know about using a nebulizer with colloidal silver... or gibing him Baytril to treat his respiratory problem?
Customer
about a week ago i heard some chirping/sneezing type noises. I didn't realize until saturday that it was him. thats when i took him into the vet. he's been lethargic. tilting his head weird .. keeping his eyes closed.. opening and moving his mouth weird. sleeping late.. he did eat 2 meal worms yesterday.
Customer
the really low humidity is probably terrible ;(
Customer
I was actually wrong... they only did one injection of Fortaz ,on Saturday. There wasn't a second shot. I do have an appointment for a second shot today at 4:30. But its so stressful for him...he is very skittish and is not comfortable being handles. I worry about that too... all the trauma and stress.

Anytime that we have an animal in captivity, we must provide for them in the same way that nature would. That means you must provide humidity, temps, substrate, diet, etc. similar to what the environment would naturally be. You must take the temperature and ensure that these match the requirements.

The humidity at 25% is way too low for this species. They do best at 50-80% humidity. You may need to use a fogger if you can't keep the humidity where it needs to be.

The temps are also a bit off. They should not fall below 75F at night and 105F during the day is ideal. They do like it warm. Add a ceramic heat emitter to help keep the temps up around the clock. This puts off heat but no light.

The temps and humidity being off may well be what caused the suspect URI (lethargy, head tilted back, opening of the mouth, deep breaths, etc). Seeing a vet would be most ideal if he's not improving with the shots being given. Baytril injections and nebulization are possible. Fortaz usually works well for these guys, though, but it will take a few days before you'll see benefits from any medication given. I would not recommend nebulizing with colloidal silver.

I'm sorry he does not tolerate the travel or handling well. Unfortunately, the risk to him is higher in not being handled/traveling.

Customer
Hello, my little Italian Wall Lizard has remained ill. He hasn't been eating for about 4 days. He keeps his eyes closed a lot and is very lethargic. He is still mouth breathing. His eyelids seem swollen. There are no good reptile vets where I Live. One charges 1500 dollars just to be seen. I was taking him to a vet close by, and they have been charging me all sorts of inflated, padded, bogus charges. one day was 740$ and they used the wrong X Ray machine and never gave me the results. I had to cal them 5 times to finally get results of the Xray .. which were inconclusive because they used an Xray machine for large animals. One of the doctors wanted to do another X Ray on the machine for tiny animals. They wanted me to pay another 300 dollars for X rays, when they should have just used the correct machine in the first place. They claim to have given my lizard 3 Fortaz injections. I brought him in 3 days apart for 3 injections. The last time, they mishandled him and his tail came off. I requested an oral antibiotic and a medicine for a nebulize. They agreed to give me oral Baytril and something to put in a nebulizer. When I went to pick up the medicine they only give me the oral antibiotic and it was a different medicine. They gave me oral Doxycyline and not Baytril. The also never gave me anything for a nebulizer.
Customer
Ive been calling the vet since Friday to medicine for a nebulizer. Ive also been asking them if/when/how to force feed an/or give the lizard something to hydrate him. (i think its a boy) the doctors never get on the phone and they never call me back. They never leave a note for the receptionists to answer my questions.
Customer
My lizard has been rubbing his eyes on things in the cage and keeping them closed a lot.
Customer
lethargic, not eating, mouth breathing, heavy breathing, not basking.
Customer
ive seen hime drinking water and submerging himself in his water bowl.
Customer
Today, I saw some mites on his body
Customer
his vent looks swollen
Customer
i recently bought some moss for his vivarium, from a reptile shop
Customer
the moss must have had mites
Customer
He is ill, with respiratory trouble with these mites. I think they are in his eyes. Now his vent looks swollen
Customer
This poor little lizard... i feel horrible.. I rescued him 10 months ago from ferrel cats.
Customer
Ive fallen in love with this little lizard. The vets around here are criminals. Negligent greedy thieves.
Customer
ive already spent 1300 with this vet that won't answer why questions or talk to me.
Customer
i want to save this little animal
Customer
I got a fogger to keep his vivarium humid.
Customer
my questions are:
Customer
is Doxycyline a good oral medicine for these issues?
Customer
would nebulizing him with a medicine help?
Customer
How do I get rid of the mites?
Customer
he is tiny... he only weighed 8 grams before his tail came off
Customer
he is weak and sick. Im worried about putting any chemicals on his stuff, in his vivarium, or on his body.
Customer
Ive heard water hotter than 120F kills mites and their eggs. Ive heard baking, soaking, freezing the furniture would kill them. Ive heard Frontline, Dawn dish soap, Coconut oil, etc could be used.
Customer
Thank You

I shared 26 links above to help with funding, please be sure to go through those. If you would like to supply me with your location, I would be happy to search your area for vets that offer care. If there are none directly local, you're likely to need to drive out for care.

Nebulizing with medication can help in some cases. We usually reserve this for more aggressive URI cases.

Doxycycline is a solid choice for respiratory concerns.

For mite treatment, I suggest using Provent-a-mite, but this needs to be done AFTER his respiratory concerns are addressed or he may worsen. http://www.lllreptile.com/products/391-provent-a-mite?gclid=Cj0KCQjwpdqDBhCSARIsAEUJ0hMRYSzjtNpC-ZcfH7A4nYKIvjNsYxWjRJWA4YQibLEWTTDlQxpdKSQaAuvmEALw_wcB

Customer
Thank you.
Customer
Should I try force feeding him and/or hydrating him?
Customer
I don't see the 26 links. Thanks
Customer
I live in Nassau County NY, outside of New Yor City... The doctors here are the worst of the world.. both the human doctors and the animal doctors. Super greedy and negligent.
Customer
Can the mites go on people, cats, dogs, squirrels, or birds? I am thinking to take the entire vivarium outside and power wash and soak outside. I am worried about our dog, cats, squirrels, and birds.

At home, you can try soaking in warm water 2x daily up to the shoulders for 30 minutes. This will encourage hydration and a BM and once the bowels are moving this can also strengthen the appetite, too. You can encourage eating by hand feeding and also offering pureed human baby food in flavors like chicken, turkey, etc. A small amount can be placed on the snout to be licked off. Another option is to syringe feed directly into the mouth (go slowly).

I've had great luck with the following clinics in the NYC area that are exotic specialists:
https://avianandexoticvets.com
https://www.amcny.org/pet-owners/specialties/avian-exotic-pet-medicine/
https://www.birdexoticsvet.com/manhattan-vet

Mites tend to be species specific, so you're likely to only see transmission to other reptiles (not birds or mammals).

If finances are tight, I would highly recommend looking into both financial aid and financing options. Organizations like these make it possible for owners to fund an expensive procedure even if they cannot personally afford it at that time. With financing, you pay the amount back to the financing company BUT with financial aid the bill is paid for and you are NOT expected to pay the amount back. I also want to mention that many of the companies listed below work primarily with cats and dogs but will also consider helping exotics and pocket pets, as well, depending on need. If you don’t need the links now, it may be beneficial to keep them for the future and for other pets in the household. You can find vets open in your area here: https://www.petflight.com/vet_clinics. Here are some links to get you started:

1) Red Rover: https://redrover.org/relief/

2) Best friends: http://bestfriends.org/resources/financial-aid-pets

3) AVMA: https://www.avma.org/public/YourVet/Pages/Financial-assistance-for-veterinary-care-costs.aspx

4) HSUS: http://www.humanesociety.org/animals/resources/tips/trouble_affording_veterinary_care.html

5) PAWS: https://www.paws.org/cats-and-dogs/other-services/help-with-veterinary-bills/

6) Your dogs friend: http://yourdogsfriend.org/we-recommend/need-help-paying-vet-bills/

7) AFRP: https://www.animalfriendsrescue.org/financialassistance.html

8) Friends of pets: http://friendsofpets.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/FinAsstGuide201708.pdf

9) Speaking for Spot: http://speakingforspot.com/?p=Financial%20Assistance%20for%20Veterinary%20Care

10) Rainbows Bridge: https://www.rainbowsbridge.com/New_Beginnings/Pets_in_Need/Financial_Help.htm

11) AHF: https://www.animalhealthfoundation.net/index.html

12) Paws 4 a cure: http://www.paws4acure.org/askforhelp.php

13) O&B: http://www.onyxandbreezy.org/grant-application.html

14) Mosby: https://www.themosbyfoundation.org/apply-for-assistance/

15) BDF: http://www.browndogfoundation.org/process

16) Waggle: https://waggle.org/who-we-are/how-we-work/ (this company helps with veterinary-specific crowdfunding to their database of donors)

3 options for financing include www.carecredit.com, www.scratchpay.com and www.vetbilling.com. The first two companies have low interest APR rates (starting at 5%) and allow you to pay for a vet bill over 6-24 months. The last company offer a billing option for veterinary clients through automatic bank account drafting on a predetermined date at the time of service. Care Credit checks your credit but Scratch Pay only performs a soft inquiry (will not affect your credit score), making it a good choice for owners who may have been declined for Care Credit in the past.

If you are a veteran or active-duty, consider VETERAN PET FINANCIAL HELP available here:

https://www.spcai.org/get-involved/military-support/operation-military-pets/
https://www.humanesociety.org/resources/are-you-having-trouble-affording-your-pet

https://petsforpatriots.org/help-with-pet-veterinary-costs/

http://www.operationwearehere.com/Pets.html

If you are in Canada, try here: https://www.petcard.ca

Does this all make sense? Do you have any additional questions I can address today on this topic?

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