Eye problems, possible UV problem?

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Eye problems, possible UV problem?

Postby TheRamiRocketMan » Tue Jul 11, 2017 9:41 pm

Hello all!

My bearded dragon Crunch has been having a lot of eye issues recently. She keeps them closed often and they always contain a strange transparent goop. The vet is at a loss.

I found an old thread saying that eye problems are usually caused by UVB overexposure so I wanted to know what the forum thought. The UV light is 12 inches (30cm) away from the highest basking point and is the only light in the setup.

Setup:
Reptile One UVB10.0 T8 18W
150W Exo Terra Ceramic Heater
3ft long, 1.5ft deep, 2ft tall
Substrate: Woodchips (from the reptile store)
Temp: 95F (35C)

Diet:
Crickets with calcium and Vitamins
Yellow Squash, Kale, Strawberries, Occasionally Carrot and a cheeky meal worm

Humidity comes from a water bowel, I also mist the tank occasionally and I give baths once or twice a fortnight.

Appreciate any help!
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Re: Eye problems, possible UV problem?

Postby kingofnobbys » Wed Jul 12, 2017 1:30 am

Guide for UV :
UVA AND UVB ADEQUATE ?
>>> how old is the compact or T8 tube or T5 tube ? == they decay in performance over time.
>>> how old is it ?

VERY IMPORTANT : what is the brand ?

Not all UVB compacts, tubes and MVBs are created equal or as well.
Many Chain Petshops sell their own brand (Zilla, All Living Things, Reptile-One, Nat Geo , Natural Selections (in green boxes) which are cheap Chinese clones made very cheaply using very poor quality quartz glass and cheap phosphors ==> very poor UV spectrum produced including UVC and bad parts of the UVB band.

>>> dometic fittings for T8 and T5 tubes are fine PRIVIDED the tube is not covered == the cover will stop all UV.
>>> a reflector hood is an excellent investment as it will essentially focus and essentially double the UVA and UVB seen my the beardie , and no UVA or UVB will be wasted by radiating to areas inaccessible by the beardie.
>>> also is it sitting ontop a mesh top ? == BAD (will cut UV by at least 25%) == I recommend mounting UVB globes and tubes UNDER the lid.
>>> how far from basking spot ? == there are optimal distances for all UVB lights from the beardie see Arcadia Website for a good guide (a good UVB for beardies at their basking spot is about 180 microW UVB / sqcm )

Too far and the UVA and UVB WILL BE TOO DILUTE.
UVA FLUX TOO LOW where dragon is ==> a very lethargic dragon w/ a very poor apetite just in the short term , and neurological problems if this persists , not to mention MVB if UVB flux too low long enough with inadequate metabolisation of dietary calcium or inadequate intake out calcium

Image
Image

Compare T8 and T5HO tube performance.
Image

is a good idea to mount the UVB globe or one end of the UVB T8 or T5 tube, so it’s adjacent as close as you can arrange it , to the basking bulb.
Last edited by kingofnobbys on Wed Jul 12, 2017 2:05 am, edited 2 times in total.
CBDs: Puff ( RIP 10Dec2015 (3.2 years old (aneurism)) ,Rex (RIP 16Mar2017 at 4.6 yrs old (unexplained death)) , both adopted at 6wks old..Toothless & Peppa : (5 wks old 19dec2015).
Eastern BT Skinks : George & Mildred (born Sept 2010).
Eastern Water Skinks : Lucky (wild juvenile), rescued from a cat.Taken by a SI and far too soon, 9mths with us. RIP 21Jul2010.Wriggles - (rescued injured), small lizard thought she was a big lizard, 7-8 yrs old, died in her sleep, RIP 2Feb2016.)
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Re: Eye problems, possible UV problem?

Postby kingofnobbys » Wed Jul 12, 2017 1:32 am

TheRamiRocketMan wrote:Hello all!

My bearded dragon Crunch has been having a lot of eye issues recently. She keeps them closed often and they always contain a strange transparent goop. The vet is at a loss.

<<< how old is she ?

I found an old thread saying that eye problems are usually caused by UVB overexposure so I wanted to know what the forum thought. The UV light is 12 inches (30cm) away from the highest basking point and is the only light in the setup.

Setup:
Reptile One UVB10.0 T8 18W
>>> Reptile One UV tubes and globes are made in china and are of very dodgey quality. This is contributing to your beardie's eye problems , ditch the Reptile One UVB and replace with either an Exo Terra, Arcadia or Zoo Med
<<<< a T8 10% tube is totally in effective at 12inches, even in a reflector hood and mounted under the lid. While the UVA and UVB from it will inadequate , it will likely be leaking bad wavelengths of UVB and also UVC and this is what is likely bothering her eyes.

At 12 inches it's unlikely the bearded dragon is getting more than 60 microW UVB / sqcm which is less than 1/3 her needs from the T8 10%UVB tube (under ideal condition), and likely much less if not set up in a reflector hood mounted under the lid.
Similar for the UVA.

Look up photoconjuctivitis.
<<< I think it's a combination of exposure to a very poor UV spectrum and perhaps abrasion from the woodchips of the eyeballs causing these issues , and they eyes are now infected , what has the vet prescribed (ointment) ?

You need to consider upgrading to a GOOD QUALITY T5HO 10-12% UVB tube in a reflector hood (mounted about 8-10 inches from the basking spot + a good colourless par38 incandescent or halogen spotglobe (for the bright light and heat during the day).

Reserve the CHE for keeping the viv warm overnight , highly recommend you place this on at least a simple inline switching thermostat to ensure no overheating.


150W Exo Terra Ceramic Heater
3ft long, 1.5ft deep, 2ft tall
Substrate: Woodchips (from the reptile store)
>>> Regarding woodchip , ditch them , these WILL KILL your pet dragon WHEN he ingests some because he will not be able digest or pass it and he'll die from a very serious impaction. Only good place for them is outside on your garden bed.

Temp: 95F (35C)
<<< where is this temperature measured , and how are you measuring it ?

Diet:
Crickets with calcium and Vitamins
Yellow Squash, Kale, Strawberries, Occasionally Carrot and a cheeky meal worm

Humidity comes from a water bowel, I also mist the tank occasionally and I give baths once or twice a fortnight.
<<<< unless your bearded dragon actually drinks from the water bowl (most wont), it's not needed..
<<<< you are overdoing the bathing, unless he drinks the bath water or enjoys it (it's fine to endulge him)


Appreciate any help!
Last edited by kingofnobbys on Wed Jul 12, 2017 2:18 am, edited 7 times in total.
CBDs: Puff ( RIP 10Dec2015 (3.2 years old (aneurism)) ,Rex (RIP 16Mar2017 at 4.6 yrs old (unexplained death)) , both adopted at 6wks old..Toothless & Peppa : (5 wks old 19dec2015).
Eastern BT Skinks : George & Mildred (born Sept 2010).
Eastern Water Skinks : Lucky (wild juvenile), rescued from a cat.Taken by a SI and far too soon, 9mths with us. RIP 21Jul2010.Wriggles - (rescued injured), small lizard thought she was a big lizard, 7-8 yrs old, died in her sleep, RIP 2Feb2016.)
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Re: Eye problems, possible UV problem?

Postby kingofnobbys » Wed Jul 12, 2017 1:46 am

double post
CBDs: Puff ( RIP 10Dec2015 (3.2 years old (aneurism)) ,Rex (RIP 16Mar2017 at 4.6 yrs old (unexplained death)) , both adopted at 6wks old..Toothless & Peppa : (5 wks old 19dec2015).
Eastern BT Skinks : George & Mildred (born Sept 2010).
Eastern Water Skinks : Lucky (wild juvenile), rescued from a cat.Taken by a SI and far too soon, 9mths with us. RIP 21Jul2010.Wriggles - (rescued injured), small lizard thought she was a big lizard, 7-8 yrs old, died in her sleep, RIP 2Feb2016.)
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Re: Eye problems, possible UV problem?

Postby AHBD » Wed Jul 12, 2017 9:12 am

Hi there, I agree that the uvb bulb may not be effective and may be hurting her eyes. She might also be sluggish because you have a ceramic heater rather than a bright basking light. Change that ASAP, get a nice bright basking light , even a flood or halogen bulb from a Home Depot or Walmart.


Than get a good uvb bulb like Reptisun 10.0 or Arcadia 12%.
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Re: Eye problems, possible UV problem?

Postby EllenD » Wed Jul 12, 2017 9:56 am

Yep, did the vet ask about your set up? His eyes are being effected by a combination of a poor UVB light and the wood chips, which are horrible for bearded dragons. You need to get those wood chips out of his tank immediately, they are not only scratching and irritating his eyes (tiny pieces of wood and wood dust actually get inside their eyes), but it's a massive impaction risk. Little pieces of wood splinter off from the larger chips, and they end up ingesting them and becoming impacted. Plus, the bacterial infection in his eyes is being harbored in the wood chips and is reinfecting his eyes over and over again. So no more loose substrate, for now dump out the wood chips, completely disinfect his tank and everything inside of it, and put down paper towels, which can be thrown away and replaced when they get dirty. You can put down ceramic tile or non adhesive shelf liner if you want to later, but for now you must get the wood chips out of there.

Your Reptile One UVB tube is junk, it actually does put out appropriate UVB from what I've read, the problem is that they also emit horrible, eye-damaging rays along with the UVB light. You need to buy a Reptisun 10.0 (not a 5.0) T8 tube the same length as the fixture you already have, and make sure that it is mounted INSIDE OF HIS TANK, not on top of a mesh or glass lid!!! UVB light does not penetrate glass at all, and that mesh absorbs up to 50% or more of the UVB. So use either 3M Command Hooks or Industrial Strength Velcro (rated up to 16 pounds) to mount the Reptisun 10.0 T8 under the lid, and it must be within 8" inches of where he sits on his basking spot at the furthest for him to receive adequate UVB light. Also, please make sure your UVB fixture doesn't have any kind of clear plastic or glass cover over the UVB tube, that will block all UVB light. There should be nothing between your beardie and the actual UVB tube.

As already mentioned, a CHE is not an appropriate basking bulb, they must have bright white light to bask with right alongside the UVB light, so they get both at the same time! This mimics natural sunlight. So if he's lethargic or not eating it's due to a combination of little to no UVB, inadequate UVB, and zero basking light. All you need is a regular, household INDOOR halogen flood bulb from Lowes, probably either a 75 watt or 100 watt, whichever gets his 3 temperature zones within the correct ranges, which if incorrect can effect his digestion of food.

Basking Spot: 99-103 for an adult, 105-110 for a baby, if he mouth gapes it's too hot

Hot Side: 88-93 maximum

Cool Side: 75-80 maximum

After you remove the wood chips, disinfect his tank, and get him into clean paper towels, you may want to go to Walmart or a drug store and buy a bottle of saline eyewash or Eyedrops that are just saline and nothing else. Wipe the conjunctivitis out of his eyes gently with a tissue, then put a few drops in each eye. I'd do this at least twice a day until they get better.

I'd just turn off that Reptile One UVB light completely, he can go a week or so without a UVB light. It's doing no good and it's hurting him. You will need to go out and buy a halogen indoor flood bulb though, and screw it into the fixture your CHE is in. Then turn off that UVB light and work on ordering or going out and buying the Reptisun 10.0 T8. But that UVB is causing half the problem, so I'd just take him outside for an hour a day until you can get the Reptisun.

I'd bet that his eyes will be 100% better in as little as a week after getting rid of the wood chips and that Reptile One UVB light.
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Re: Eye problems, possible UV problem?

Postby Reptilelady » Wed Jul 12, 2017 10:12 am

EllenD wrote:Yep, did the vet ask about your set up? His eyes are being effected by a combination of a poor UVB light and the wood chips, which are horrible for bearded dragons. You need to get those wood chips out of his tank immediately, they are not only scratching and irritating his eyes (tiny pieces of wood and wood dust actually get inside their eyes), but it's a massive impaction risk. Little pieces of wood splinter off from the larger chips, and they end up ingesting them and becoming impacted. Plus, the bacterial infection in his eyes is being harbored in the wood chips and is reinfecting his eyes over and over again. So no more loose substrate, for now dump out the wood chips, completely disinfect his tank and everything inside of it, and put down paper towels, which can be thrown away and replaced when they get dirty. You can put down ceramic tile or non adhesive shelf liner if you want to later, but for now you must get the wood chips out of there.

Your Reptile One UVB tube is junk, it actually does put out appropriate UVB from what I've read, the problem is that they also emit horrible, eye-damaging rays along with the UVB light. You need to buy a Reptisun 10.0 (not a 5.0) T8 tube the same length as the fixture you already have, and make sure that it is mounted INSIDE OF HIS TANK, not on top of a mesh or glass lid!!! UVB light does not penetrate glass at all, and that mesh absorbs up to 50% or more of the UVB. So use either 3M Command Hooks or Industrial Strength Velcro (rated up to 16 pounds) to mount the Reptisun 10.0 T8 under the lid, and it must be within 8" inches of where he sits on his basking spot at the furthest for him to receive adequate UVB light. Also, please make sure your UVB fixture doesn't have any kind of clear plastic or glass cover over the UVB tube, that will block all UVB light. There should be nothing between your beardie and the actual UVB tube.

As already mentioned, a CHE is not an appropriate basking bulb, they must have bright white light to bask with right alongside the UVB light, so they get both at the same time! This mimics natural sunlight. So if he's lethargic or not eating it's due to a combination of little to no UVB, inadequate UVB, and zero basking light. All you need is a regular, household INDOOR halogen flood bulb from Lowes, probably either a 75 watt or 100 watt, whichever gets his 3 temperature zones within the correct ranges, which if incorrect can effect his digestion of food.

Basking Spot: 99-103 for an adult, 105-110 for a baby, if he mouth gapes it's too hot

Hot Side: 88-93 maximum

Cool Side: 75-80 maximum

After you remove the wood chips, disinfect his tank, and get him into clean paper towels, you may want to go to Walmart or a drug store and buy a bottle of saline eyewash or Eyedrops that are just saline and nothing else. Wipe the conjunctivitis out of his eyes gently with a tissue, then put a few drops in each eye. I'd do this at least twice a day until they get better.

I'd just turn off that Reptile One UVB light completely, he can go a week or so without a UVB light. It's doing no good and it's hurting him. You will need to go out and buy a halogen indoor flood bulb though, and screw it into the fixture your CHE is in. Then turn off that UVB light and work on ordering or going out and buying the Reptisun 10.0 T8. But that UVB is causing half the problem, so I'd just take him outside for an hour a day until you can get the Reptisun.

I'd bet that his eyes will be 100% better in as little as a week after getting rid of the wood chips and that Reptile One UVB light.


Very well written EllenD! :D Ty for clearing that up about the gaping part you mention :lol: I used to see him do this alot but lately i do not see him and was wondering why he wasnt doing so much. I fixed the too hot basking temperature! :P

Having the right UVB light is soooo crucial to the beardies eye's health. From personal experience i had the coconut bark chips for my chameleon and it was not very nice at all. The bark chips got into his eyes, had the coil UVB bulbs he ended up closing his eyes a lot! Unfortunately he passed away and only had him for a month :shock: was really sad but because the stupid petstore gave me wrong advice he suffered. I feel bad but thats over now. Decided to get a beardie instead because they are hardy species but please do not make the mistake i did and really take care of beardies health. Most problems occur from husbandry. I learned my valuable lesson. Getting the right setup , husbandry is most important.
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Re: Eye problems, possible UV problem?

Postby TheRamiRocketMan » Sun Jul 16, 2017 6:44 pm

Thank you so much for all your help! You have really enlightened me on the subtleties of lizard habitat setups. The pet store was giving out rubbish advice and I'll try to fix up the setup ASAP.

As for the questions, Crunch is approximately 9 years old, I don't know exactly because I bought her off a breeder. I measure the temperature with a metal probe placed under the basking spot at the same height crunch basks at, and I bathe crunch a lot to make sure she gets her fluids and because she enjoys it so much.

For now, I'm going to remove the substrate and start taking Crunch outside to get adequate UVB (its winter in Australia right now so it's a bit difficult for reptiles but I'm taking her out for multiple short doses per day). Also the UV mount is INSIDE the tank with nothing obscuring it, but it doesn't have a reflector.

On my shopping list now I have:
Exoterra, Arcadia, Zoo Med or Reptisun UVB 24 inch bulb.
A bright basking light to replace my ceramic one (from one of the companies above) or a halogen bulb and mount to position next to the ceramic heater.

I also need to remove the wood chips, disinfect the tank and placed down paper towel substrate, and I need to move the UV mount so it is 8 inches from the basking spot.

Again, thank you so much, your advice has been invaluable and Crunches life should be better for it.
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Re: Eye problems, possible UV problem?

Postby TheRamiRocketMan » Sun Jul 16, 2017 9:20 pm

~UPDATE~
Just raced down to the store and bought an Exo Terra ReptiGlo 2.0 and an Exo Terra 100W Intense Basking Spot heat lamp. I've also replaced the woodchips for paper towel (after cleaning/disinfecting the entire tank). I have to say, Crunch is already looking much better. She is keeping both eyes open for much longer and she is moving around more. It's amazing how things which seem so subtle to us can make such a big difference.
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Re: Eye problems, possible UV problem?

Postby kingofnobbys » Sun Jul 16, 2017 11:48 pm

TheRamiRocketMan wrote:~UPDATE~
Just raced down to the store and bought an Exo Terra ReptiGlo 2.0
<<< a 2%uvb tube is entirely inadequate , I'd take it back and exchange for either an Exo Terra or Zoo Med or Arcadia tube the same size rated AT LEAST 10% UVB , ditch the Reptile One T8 tube , only good place for that is in the whiz bin .
I highly recommend you invest in a slip on reflector for your size UVB tube (this will focus the UV and virtually double the UVA and UVB at the basking spot .....see http://arcadia-reptile.com/fluorescent- ... tors-t5t8/
or buy a new Reflector Hood .

IF buying a new reflector hood go for a T5 and upgrade the UVB tube to a Exo Terra or Zoo Med T5HO 10%UVB or Arcadia T5HO 12%UVB tube , the T5HO tubes are much more powerful than T8 tubes rated at the same %UVB AmazingAmazon have reflector hoods and most the T5HO tubes.
.


and an Exo Terra 100W Intense Basking Spot heat lamp.
<<<< these Neodymium globes are OK , barely.... when it is 6 months old it will require replacement , I recommend you replace it with a Philips clear colourless par38 incandescent indoor/outdoor spot (heat, bright white light , no UVA , no UVB ) from Bunnings .

I've also replaced the woodchips for paper towel (after cleaning/disinfecting the entire tank). I have to say, Crunch is already looking much better. She is keeping both eyes open for much longer and she is moving around more. It's amazing how things which seem so subtle to us can make such a big difference.
CBDs: Puff ( RIP 10Dec2015 (3.2 years old (aneurism)) ,Rex (RIP 16Mar2017 at 4.6 yrs old (unexplained death)) , both adopted at 6wks old..Toothless & Peppa : (5 wks old 19dec2015).
Eastern BT Skinks : George & Mildred (born Sept 2010).
Eastern Water Skinks : Lucky (wild juvenile), rescued from a cat.Taken by a SI and far too soon, 9mths with us. RIP 21Jul2010.Wriggles - (rescued injured), small lizard thought she was a big lizard, 7-8 yrs old, died in her sleep, RIP 2Feb2016.)
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Re: Eye problems, possible UV problem?

Postby TheRamiRocketMan » Thu Jul 20, 2017 12:39 am

Took back the 2.0 for a 10.0 but they were sold out of my size. They've ordered one in for me which should be in by next week. In the meantime I've just been putting Crunch outside for UV. She ate some crickets and did the most massive poo so I think she'll be fine. She is keeping her eyes open a lot more but she misses being able to dig. Every night she is scratching at the paper towel trying to dig a hole, so I think I'm going to shred some up so she has the option to at least bury herself if she wants to.
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Re: Eye problems, possible UV problem?

Postby kingofnobbys » Thu Jul 20, 2017 12:41 am

TheRamiRocketMan wrote:Took back the 2.0 for a 10.0 but they were sold out of my size. They've ordered one in for me which should be in by next week. In the meantime I've just been putting Crunch outside for UV. She ate some crickets and did the most massive poo so I think she'll be fine. She is keeping her eyes open a lot more but she misses being able to dig. Every night she is scratching at the paper towel trying to dig a hole, so I think I'm going to shred some up so she has the option to at least bury herself if she wants to.


Lay 3 or 4 sheets of paper toweling in the fav scratching spot. This works wonders.
CBDs: Puff ( RIP 10Dec2015 (3.2 years old (aneurism)) ,Rex (RIP 16Mar2017 at 4.6 yrs old (unexplained death)) , both adopted at 6wks old..Toothless & Peppa : (5 wks old 19dec2015).
Eastern BT Skinks : George & Mildred (born Sept 2010).
Eastern Water Skinks : Lucky (wild juvenile), rescued from a cat.Taken by a SI and far too soon, 9mths with us. RIP 21Jul2010.Wriggles - (rescued injured), small lizard thought she was a big lizard, 7-8 yrs old, died in her sleep, RIP 2Feb2016.)
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