I lost my beardie this weekend, what did I do wrong?

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I lost my beardie this weekend, what did I do wrong?

Postby JackIsBack77 » Mon Jun 17, 2019 1:32 pm

So as a bit of a backstory, when I first got my beardie, Scorch, I suspected he had some issues with his respiratory system. I ended up taking him to three different vets in all, and none of them really could find an URI. I just let it go after the third one gave me some gentle medicine to see if it would be fixed.

Fast forward to the winter and Scorch did a "typical" brumation cycle. He was still eating and pooping, but he wasn't very active. I did some research on this and found that this is common in reptiles, especially during the winter months (I have a BP who didn't eat for four months but then resumed eating after the winter).

Now, about a week ago I noticed he essentially stopped moving and stopped eating. I was thinking he could somehow be impacted even though he lives on slate tile and I feed him collard greens, butternut squash, endive, wax worms and super worms.

I tried to give him a warm bath to see if maybe he needed to pass anything, but he didn't. He didn't swim in the water. He didn't move. He didn't even change the direction of his eyes. I put him back in his tank and he immediately opened his mouth and started turning black.

I took him to the vet the next morning who told me nothing could be done at that point and he needed to be euthanized. He told me it couldn't really be pinned down to one thing, but that he was just not well. He did, however, rule out impaction. He was one year old.

I kept his basking spot around 100 degrees. I gave him a temperature gradient. He had a UVB 10.0 bulb spanning his cage. I fed him the right diet. I gave him calcium and multi-vitamin supplements. I tried to keep his humidity as close to 35% as I could. Sure, during the winter I didn't clean his cage or feed him as much as I should have, but I don't think I was anywhere near neglect. He still died, and I can't help but feel it was my fault.

What do I do to gain closure? How do I move on and keep reptiles without worrying that I'm going to ultimately be the end of them, too?
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Re: I lost my beardie this weekend, what did I do wrong?

Postby Aaradimian » Mon Jun 17, 2019 3:03 pm

Very sorry you lost Scorch :(

It's possible his death was a result of aspirating water unless you can confirm that he didn't dunk his head and the water wasn't above his nostrils when he was laying there. However, if he'd slowed down prior, it's more likely that there was something wrong that was out of your control. It could easily have been a congenital condition as not all beardies come out of the clutch healthy or well formed sometimes. From across the keyboard, there's no way to tell, but nothing in what you mentioned as far as husbandry sounded out of whack to me in a general sense. Superworms can be a bit hard on their stomachs and if the UV was screened or had the plastic cover over the bulb, those are both problems, but again, there's no smoking gun I can tell from your description.

In order to move on, it's definitely good to grieve for your little friend, but please don't beat yourself up over this! It is possible to do exactly the right things at the right time in the right way and still end up with garbage results. Life is just unfair sometimes and, sadly, bad things happen to good people/beardies. :(
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Re: I lost my beardie this weekend, what did I do wrong?

Postby JackIsBack77 » Mon Jun 17, 2019 3:08 pm

Aaradimian wrote:Very sorry you lost Scorch :(

It's possible his death was a result of aspirating water unless you can confirm that he didn't dunk his head and the water wasn't above his nostrils when he was laying there. However, if he'd slowed down prior, it's more likely that there was something wrong that was out of your control. It could easily have been a congenital condition as not all beardies come out of the clutch healthy or well formed sometimes. From across the keyboard, there's no way to tell, but nothing in what you mentioned as far as husbandry sounded out of whack to me in a general sense. Superworms can be a bit hard on their stomachs and if the UV was screened or had the plastic cover over the bulb, those are both problems, but again, there's no smoking gun I can tell from your description.

In order to move on, it's definitely good to grieve for your little friend, but please don't beat yourself up over this! It is possible to do exactly the right things at the right time in the right way and still end up with garbage results. Life is just unfair sometimes and, sadly, bad things happen to good people/beardies. :(


Thanks for the reply. Unfortunately, the bulb was screened. It wasn't covered by a plastic cover, though. After learning this, I quickly made an adjustment to my BTS' enclosure and did the command hooks and a UV bulb. I don't think it was really MBD that took his life though as the lack of movement was "random". I had him for just over a year, and the vet didn't think it was obvious enough to be MBD when they euthanized him.

He didn't drown, I made sure of that. He was definitely breathing when I took him to the vet.
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Re: I lost my beardie this weekend, what did I do wrong?

Postby Drache613 » Tue Jun 18, 2019 3:04 pm

Hello,

I am terribly sorry you lost Scorch like that! :cry:
I can't think of too many things which would have caused this. He could have had a stroke
perhaps, just not sure. The only way to really know would be to have an autopsy done on
him to see if they can determine what happened.d
He was very young, so that is such a difficult call as to why he passed.
I know how hard it is to lose a dragon & how important getting some type of closure is also.
It will never feel like he is really gone though.

Tracie
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