PLEASE HELP! Diarrhea and No Appetite

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PLEASE HELP! Diarrhea and No Appetite

Postby jessdavishi » Tue Jul 23, 2019 11:37 am

Hi everyone,
I recently took in a bearded dragon from a friend who is going through a hard time and needed me to take her bearded dragon in for a while. I personally have 2 chameleons, 2 pacman frogs, and a uromastyx- so I am very familiar with reptile care.

When I went to get the bearded dragon (who is a little over a year old) I noticed a few concerning things...
-UVB bulb is not the correct wattage and is a coil bulb instead of a fluorescent tube
-there doesn’t seem to be a basking bulb, just a regular bulb that you would use in a house lamp
-his enclosure is a 20 gallon fish aquarium (not a breeder) so it is not wide enough for him to move around
-the enclosure did not contain items suitable for a reptile
-the bearded dragon has diarrhea and a complete loss of appetite

Even though I am only watching him for a while, I went ahead and bought him a 40 gallon breeder, a ReptiSun 10.0 fluorescent tube, and a basking bulb. Unfortunately, this is not my animal otherwise he would have a much better enclosure. I’ve already spent around $200 and I couldn’t justify spending more because he isn’t mine. I’m invested in helping him get healthy and will buy him what he needs because I can’t have an animal in my care that is obviously suffering.

I’ve attached a picture of the diarrhea he had this morning. He is still in his old enclosure in this photo because the pet stores near me did not have the correct breeder in stock so I had to drive to get one 35 minutes away. However I did remove the items that she had in the tank and replaced them with my own.

Does this seem to be concerning? I’m very worried. I’m not familiar with bearded dragons (the closest thing I’ve cared for is a uromastyx) so ANY advice would be appreciated.

Thank you!
[Click image to enlarge]
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Re: PLEASE HELP! Diarrhea and No Appetite

Postby CooperDragon » Tue Jul 23, 2019 11:45 am

I'm glad you are able to care for him. Thank you for upgrading his enclosure and lighting. That should help out quite a lot. Since lighting (and heat) is directly related to digestion, that may make a big difference on its own. I would give him some time to settle into the changes and see if his poop starts to look better. Offer water by dripping it on his nose to lick up.That will help replace water lost due to diarrhea. What kinds of food are you offering him so far? He looks pretty good in the photo so hopefully some small adjustments will make a big difference for him.
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Re: PLEASE HELP! Diarrhea and No Appetite

Postby claudiusx » Tue Jul 23, 2019 11:50 am

In addition to coopers advice, a normal household bulb is adequate for a basking bulb. The basking bulb really only had to do two things in the presence of a good uvb bulb. Provide a bright white light, and provide the temperatures that are needed. Many of us use household bulbs, and many use the reptile basking bulbs. As long as the bulb fits those two criteria its acceptable.. to a point.

Good decision on upgrading the uvb though!
What thermometer is available? Hopefully a digital with probe end or a temp gun.

Unrelated but you mentioned it, what kind of uro do you have? You should post a thread up in the uro section! I used to have one, and she had a thread there too. Would love to see yours.

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Re: PLEASE HELP! Diarrhea and No Appetite

Postby jessdavishi » Tue Jul 23, 2019 12:03 pm

Thank you for the info! I wasn’t aware that a normal household bulb was okay for a basking bulb! We use an infrared thermometer gun with a laser guide. Underneath the household bulb in the basking area, the thermometer was reading 82°F.

I have a red mali uromastyx :) I will definitely post in the uro section!

claudiusx wrote:In addition to coopers advice, a normal household bulb is adequate for a basking bulb. The basking bulb really only had to do two things in the presence of a good uvb bulb. Provide a bright white light, and provide the temperatures that are needed. Many of us use household bulbs, and many use the reptile basking bulbs. As long as the bulb fits those two criteria its acceptable.. to a point.

Good decision on upgrading the uvb though!
What thermometer is available? Hopefully a digital with probe end or a temp gun.

Unrelated but you mentioned it, what kind of uro do you have? You should post a thread up in the uro section! I used to have one, and she had a thread there too. Would love to see yours.

-Brandon
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Re: PLEASE HELP! Diarrhea and No Appetite

Postby claudiusx » Tue Jul 23, 2019 12:07 pm

Ok well good thing you got a new bulb because that clearly wasn't cutting it! That alone could be the cause of the bad poos like cooper mentioned!

Looking forward to seeing your uro :D
I really want to get another.

-Brandon
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Re: PLEASE HELP! Diarrhea and No Appetite

Postby jessdavishi » Tue Jul 23, 2019 12:12 pm

We got him yesterday and he has refused food since then. His owners mom (who was caring for him for the past week) told me he hasn’t been eating.
We are still offering food, so far we have offered live crickets, live mealworms, spring mix, and dandelion greens.
We offered these in small amounts, unsure if he would eat them. He did eat a horn worm. We have dubia roaches (which my adult chameleon loves) so we are going to try to offer that next.

I did notice near his enclosure that the owner had dried meal worms and dried crickets that her mom said she would sprinkle on top of greens. I also saw she had calcium supplement powder so that is a good sign.

CooperDragon wrote:I'm glad you are able to care for him. Thank you for upgrading his enclosure and lighting. That should help out quite a lot. Since lighting (and heat) is directly related to digestion, that may make a big difference on its own. I would give him some time to settle into the changes and see if his poop starts to look better. Offer water by dripping it on his nose to lick up.That will help replace water lost due to diarrhea. What kinds of food are you offering him so far? He looks pretty good in the photo so hopefully some small adjustments will make a big difference for him.
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Re: PLEASE HELP! Diarrhea and No Appetite

Postby CooperDragon » Tue Jul 23, 2019 1:14 pm

Horn worms are good. Nice and hydrating. So are dubias. I use those as a staple bug feeder. It sounds like you're offering some good stuff so I'd just keep at it (not too forcefully though) and see what catches his interest.
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