Baby Bearded Dragon can’t use front legs properly

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Baby Bearded Dragon can’t use front legs properly

Postby jt117 » Tue Dec 04, 2018 10:23 pm

I’ve had my baby bearded dragon for about a month now. He was purchased at Petsmart and was very energetic and healthy. Recently he has been having trouble operating his front two legs and I feel so bad for him. He is almost stumbling over himself to get to crickets so I place them very close to him so he can eat. He’s in a 40 gal terrarium set up with proper carpet and a little hut. He is almost always in his hut now and doesn’t move much. I give him 10-12 crickets a day powdered in calcium and he has 2 lamps on all day and one night basking for night. It’s around 75 degrees at night and only about 92-97 during the day. I have recently been giving him 2 mealworms a day along with crickets. I’m worried he may be impacted or something even worse. Can anyone help me try to diagnose the problem and see what methods I can try to solve it for the little guy.
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Re: Baby Bearded Dragon can’t use front legs properly

Postby Drache613 » Wed Dec 05, 2018 1:43 am

Hello,

Can you review a little more of your tank setup for us, such as the type/brand of UVB light, the
type of basking light & how you are measuring his basking temperatures?
A 40 gallon tank should be fine for his housing, are you feeding him outside of his tank, too?
How large are the crickets you feed him? They need to be smaller than the space between his
eyes, to avoid impaction issues. Since he has reptile carpet, he shouldn't have impaction issues
from loose substrate.
Based on your description, he probably isn't receiving adequate UVB exposure. Let us know
the type/brand of UVB you are using. If you have a picture or two of his tank setup, along with
him, that would be great.

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Re: Baby Bearded Dragon can’t use front legs properly

Postby jt117 » Wed Dec 05, 2018 9:48 am

I always buy the smallest crickets that my local pet store has, I have just recently started going to a new store that is much more conscious of not putting larger crickets in the mix. I would separate the larger crickets anyway. I just purchased and placed a UVB on top of his tank today. I did not have one prior to this. I also bought him a brand new container of calcium powder to dust the crickets with just incase the one I was using was causing an issue. The UVB that I just started using this morning is called "Reptile UVB 150". It is a 13W bulb and is made by Exo Terra. I believe that I have come to the conclusion that my lack of knowledge with UVB is what caused him to have this issue. I took him to a reptile vet today and she also gave me a calcium supplement that i will give him twice a day for the next month. My main question is should I take out his hut? He has been hiding under this hut for the last couple of days and I do not want him to continue hiding and not get the maximum amount of light from the newly placed UVB.
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Re: Baby Bearded Dragon can’t use front legs properly

Postby CooperDragon » Wed Dec 05, 2018 11:27 am

I'll bet lack of UVB is the issue as you said. Unfortunately the 13w isn't powerful enough for a bearded dragon. If you want one that will fit your existing fixture, go with a 26w Exo Terra UVB200. These bulbs are decent in small enclosures and should sit about 6-8'' above the main basking area. You don't have to remove the hide but I would make the basking area very easy to access (flat, low, etc) since he's having trouble getting around. A high calcium diet (maybe some black soldier fly larvae?) along with proper UVB exposure should help a lot.

In the long run I would invest in a 22'' T5 Arcadia 12% UVB light and fixture. They are excellent bulbs with a strong output. They can sit about 12'' above the main basking area and will produce UVB similar to mid morning sunlight.
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Re: Baby Bearded Dragon can’t use front legs properly

Postby jt117 » Wed Dec 05, 2018 12:14 pm

I actually just checked I bought two UVB’s. I have one that is also Exo Terra and it’s a UVB 150 26W. It’s larger than the one I mentioned. Do you think I’ll be good to use that? Or should I look for a UVB 200 26W. Also if I can get by with the UVB150, should I still hang it above the cage and not directly on top?
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Re: Baby Bearded Dragon can’t use front legs properly

Postby Aaradimian » Wed Dec 05, 2018 3:04 pm

jt117 wrote: he has 2 lamps on all day and one night basking for night.


I just noticed you said he has a night light. He won't need any extra heat at night unless the temp. gets lower than the low-sixties Fahrenheit. If that bulb puts out any visible light, that might explain the hiding. I made the mistake of having a red heat bulb over my beardie until I learned from this forum that this is a bad idea. There is a thing called a CHE that can be used for supplemental heating if it's really necessary. It doesn't emit any visible light, and so won't disrupt their sleep patterns.
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Re: Baby Bearded Dragon can’t use front legs properly

Postby jt117 » Wed Dec 05, 2018 4:54 pm

So should I just throw another bulb in my double lamp. I have one large lamp that emits the most heat and a double lamp that I Just put a UVB in. The other bulb on the double is a red night basking bulb. Do you think I should just put another standard bulb in there to try and get the heat up? I’ve been having trouble keeping the heat above 87 since I put the UVB in.
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Re: Baby Bearded Dragon can’t use front legs properly

Postby Aaradimian » Thu Dec 06, 2018 8:01 am

jt117 wrote:So should I just throw another bulb in my double lamp. I have one large lamp that emits the most heat and a double lamp that I Just put a UVB in. The other bulb on the double is a red night basking bulb. Do you think I should just put another standard bulb in there to try and get the heat up? I’ve been having trouble keeping the heat above 87 since I put the UVB in.


I upgraded my beardie's viv recently and posted a similar question because the whole temperature thing had me confused: is it ambient air temp, surface temp, how to measure, etc. The response I got was that it is the surface temp. that matters, so I'd concentrate on getting that to the desired temp of around 105 F in the basking spot, tapering off to around 80 on the cool side. I'd definitely ditch the red night light because that will apparently disrupt their sleep and may also hurt their eyes. As for reading the temps, the forum recommends using an IR gun or probe-style thermometer rather than those cheap dial ones you get at the pet stores.

To be honest, I never had luck with the probes and question their effectiveness a bit because the probe's color will influence the reading with white light. I had a black-tipped probe that was reading way higher than the IR gun I borrowed from a friend, and it was also reading higher than a silver meat probe I put in the same spot as an alternate reading source. Given all of this, I trusted the IR gun's reading since it was the most expensive of the 3, and adjusted from there based on my dragon's use of his basking spot. There's a trick to using the IR gun properly, and I think there's a thread on it somewhere here. The main thing is that the gun needs to be within an inch or so of the target spot.

The above seems to have worked, so that's the best I can guide you from my experience.
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Re: Baby Bearded Dragon can’t use front legs properly

Postby CooperDragon » Thu Dec 06, 2018 8:48 am

The uvb 150 26w is ok for now. I’d set that about 6” pver the main basking area.
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Re: Baby Bearded Dragon can’t use front legs properly

Postby Drache613 » Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:58 pm

Hello,

How is your baby doing today, has he made some improvements for you?
If you have new pictures of your lighting placement, definitely post some for us so we can see
how they are all placed.
Usually I recommend the tube bulbs, especially for reptiles that have calcium issues I feel that
they would recover better if they were under a strong T5 tube UVB light.
Let us know how he is doing.

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