Darwin

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Re: Darwin

Postby CooperDragon » Wed Sep 20, 2017 6:19 pm

Yeah it is that time of year. None of my guys have gone into brumation before. I wasn't expecting it with the weather being so unbearably hot. There must be other triggers for it. At least I know what to do and what to expect. I can imagine this sudden behavior change is really disconcerting to new caregivers. I wonder if a brumation period is rejuvenating for them. I know it has it's roots in winter preservation but I also wonder if it helps their wellbeing by getting extra rest. Perhaps it's something to be encouraged to some extent rather than avoided as is some of the advice. Hopefully he has a good rest.
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Re: Darwin

Postby sweetiepie9 » Wed Sep 20, 2017 9:04 pm

I've been dealing with brumation for 11 years and every dragon is different. Cierra, Nathaniel and Castiel are the first dragons that I've ever owned that slept in the summer, Cierra sleeps for 6 mo, normally not up until Feb. Castiel and Nathaniel sleep until Nov/Dec. I think Imp is going to want to sleep, too, but he's not allowed to do a full brumation until he gains more weight, so I'll keep his lights on so he's up in the am and continue to feed him daily. Gabriel is the same, even though I'll let them both sleep the occasional day but still with lights on. The other three have their lights off for the time they sleep. I have always hated that they brumate or slow down in the winter time, it's so hard on them. They can lose alot of weight, if they don't get into deep sleep where a hormone is produced to slow down their breathing and heart rate. In the wild they brumate because of lack of bugs and greens, keeps them alive during the winter. In captivity, they don't need to do this, but are hardwired for it. I've had a few with issues after they woke up; pulled muscle in a back leg, lack of energy when they wake up, lack of appetite, too. That's when I pull out the mix. So we'll see how Darwin handles this winter.
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Re: Darwin

Postby CooperDragon » Thu Sep 21, 2017 7:07 am

He was wide awake sitting on his rock waiting for morning routine this morning. Had a poop and ate his salad and then ran around the house like normal. I fed him some roaches that he gobbled right up and he's basking under his living room light now. Crazy lizard... :roll:
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Re: Darwin

Postby sweetiepie9 » Thu Sep 21, 2017 9:22 pm

I love your Darwin, he's such a great dragon. Would love mine to be like him!
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Re: Darwin

Postby CooperDragon » Fri Sep 22, 2017 7:47 am

And today he's back to digging into the blankets under his logs and being sleepy. I guess it's going to be on and off. Silly dude.
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Re: Darwin

Postby sweetiepie9 » Fri Sep 22, 2017 9:32 am

I call that popcorn brumation. Means you don't have to worry about his sleeping as he'll get back up, so also don't have to worry about him emptying his digestive system. My 3 go down for months, so when I get them up for baths, Cierra is staying up, eating pumpkin until she does empty her digestive system, then she can sleep in peace after that. She's my reluctant pooper, takes ages to get her to poop, have to give her hot water baths (just a bit hotter than warm) with tummy massages daily. Hope it works.
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Re: Darwin

Postby CooperDragon » Sun Oct 22, 2017 11:57 am

Just got home from a 3 week trip overseas. I was very worried about leaving the bugger alone for such a long time (our friend stops in and takes care of him every couple of days). He wound up bunkering down and just sleeping through the whole thing. I'd check his camera and he'd turn around a bit and burrow in his blankets but that's about it. He has only lost 10g during this time which is great. Still at 575g. Had him out for a bit and offered him some water. He took a little bit and was fairly alert. Then I put him back in his tank. He basked for a few min but then bunkered back down. Not ready to be done yet I guess. I'm glad being away for so long didn't cause him any stress. Ideal timing =)
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Re: Darwin

Postby sweetiepie9 » Sun Oct 22, 2017 7:23 pm

i'm glad he decided that sleeping while you were away would be a good thing to do. Wonder if he'll sleep like he did earlier, up and down. My 3 are still sound asleep. Imp gets sleepier by the day but I took his hide out as he still needs to eat a few bugs every 2nd day, he loses weight so fast, I almost lost him after last winter. I might let him sleep for the week, covered, with his blanket on, so he stays warm.

Gabriel went to the vet, he's the same but liquids seem to make him choke now. Had to do CPR a couple of days last week. But otherwise, he's the same. Hasn't lost any weight. I have powder calcium and vit/min that I can put on his bugs and give him less more often. I'll try the Serrepeptase again tomorrow, he seems to like it and it makes him feel better, I can tell by his colours.

I'll be interested to hear about Darwin in the next few weeks, to see what he does. He is such a wonderful dragon.
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Re: Darwin

Postby CooperDragon » Mon Oct 23, 2017 10:28 am

Is Imp's weight steady now with the regular feedings? I remember how much trouble you were having getting his weight up before. I'm glad Gabriel likes the serrapeptase. Are you able to get some silk worm treats for him?

Darwin was up out of his hide this morning and pooped. Saw a bunch of the roach shells from his feeding about a month ago. Didn't seem to cause an issue not completely passing them before. He's a bright eyed ball of energy today running all over the house as usual. Crazy little dragon =). If he stays up for a few days I'll give him some roaches and order a treat like hornworms or some silks.

Then as I wrote this he went to his spot under the couch on top of the nok hockey board... :dontknow:
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Re: Darwin

Postby sweetiepie9 » Mon Oct 23, 2017 9:36 pm

Imp is holding steady and very sleepy, so I might get a roach into him or a worm, but not much else. I have to get a new scale but can't afford anything right now, helping my son with his expenses. He has 2 young kids with no income & no $ from their mom, either, so that's put a big dent on my funds. But my grandchildren have to come first, Leo is 4 yrs old and Safara is 3, so a big handful. He's doing a great job and has applied for gov't relief, but in Canada takes awhile to get that going. He got his application in now and it's just a waiting game. Once the funds are in, though, he'll be in better shape.

Gabriel did well with his favourite super worms with calcium powder on them, so that's how he'll get his calcium and vit/min ongoing as he's having trouble with liquids. But he did get his Serrepeptase down this am and hoping he'll take it down well every morning. So sad to know I'm going to lose him at some point, hopefully not soon, but I won't let him be in too much pain.

I'm glad Darwin doing so well, hopefully soon he'll wake up soon!
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Re: Darwin

Postby CooperDragon » Fri Oct 27, 2017 11:30 am

He had one fairly energetic day this week with some time in the window. Yesterday and today he hasn't bothered waking up so I guess it's back to sleep mode. That's OK though he seems to be fine and his weight is down only 10g this month which is nothing.
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Re: Darwin

Postby sweetiepie9 » Fri Oct 27, 2017 5:26 pm

That's great news, that he's only lost 10g.
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Re: Darwin

Postby CooperDragon » Fri Dec 29, 2017 4:00 pm

Looks like he's back to his old self. He has been awake at his normal times the past few days. His appetite still isn't quite what it was but he's darting around like a madman and watched the snow fall for a while this afternoon. Glad to have my buddy back =).

I have some data about brumation now too! It looks like he lost roughly 25g (about 4.3%) over three months which isn't bad at all. His fat stores still look healthy. He is still well proportioned and it looks like his appetite just declined corresponding to his energy use. I don't see any ill effects. I fed him small bits on and off and he passed them through just a bit more slowly than normal. His poops are almost back to daily so I don't see sign of rot or anything negative from the occasional snack and drink of water. His lights remained on a normal schedule and temperature throughout.

Here is a graph from his brumation. I only took actual weight once a week (ish) so the rest of the data points were just filled in to approximate the trend.
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Re: Darwin

Postby sweetiepie9 » Fri Dec 29, 2017 8:06 pm

Glad to hear that he's up now. I have 2 up (I lost Imp a couple of weeks ago, no idea why he was sick), Gabriel and Nathaniel (he slept for 3 mo, too); Cierra and Castiel are still sleeping.

Hope you had a good Christmas and Happy New Year, Dec went by so fast this year!
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Re: Darwin

Postby Betty53218 » Sat Dec 30, 2017 6:27 am

I believe that Smaug and Darwin are about the same age. Smaug will be going on 3 yr. old in January. He even looks just like Darwin. Thought I’d share a little bit of Smaug’s post-brumation experiences. First off, he turns into hyper dragon for a couple months. He will usually lose weight because he doesn’t eat a lot and runs around like a mad man. He started out at 573g at the onset of brumation (3rd week of June). He would lose and sometimes gain a few grams at his weekly weigh in. There was always one day a week that he was up for his bath and time outside running around for awhile. You’d never guess that he was brumating on those days, but after playtime, he zonks right back out again. At the end of brumation, (1st week of September) he weighed 556g. He got down to 536g because of his energy and low appetite by 6 weeks out. Then he slowly started gaining again. He presently weighs around 570g, and has had a normal appetite for awhile now. Silly lizard sleeps the summer away.
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