Possibly Sick? (Long Story)

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Possibly Sick? (Long Story)

Postby laceyridley » Tue Sep 17, 2019 7:36 am

I have had Kuzco since he was just a few weeks old. He is now over 2 years old. Once he reached what I thought was full growth around 1-1 1/2 years old, he stopped shedding. Completely. Not once all year last year. It baffled me, but everything I researched said sometimes they do that as they get older. So that is what I assumed.

Now, has has completely changed. He seems to be in constant shed mode. It starts out on his tail and back, then his beard and face, then his arms and feet. As soon as I think he is finished, another round starts. And it isn't a quick shed either. It takes a week or longer for him to go through it. He gets super dry and crusty, despite the tank having a water dish and I give him a soak to help him feel better. It is almost cringy when he gets so crusty.

To add to it, he has recently developed a nasty case of the runs. I'm talking full blown diarrhea. It isn't foul smelling like parasites, and he is not lethargic at all. If anything, he is more active than usual. He also has doubled his appetite. It almost feels as if he is making up for lost time or something with food and shedding.

The only things that have recently been changed are his lighting and his diet, slightly. It was time for a new uvb (yes, I use proper tube for that) so when I purchased it, I went ahead and got him new basking bulbs as well. His temperature doesn't seem to be an issue to him because he is so active.

I am not sure if the new bulbs are just that much better than what he had before or what. There is not a reptile vet anywhere near us. The closest is 1 hour away, and Kuzco hates traveling. He doesn't even like me holding him anymore since he went through puberty. He is what is known as a Twang personality. I have tried every trick in the book to make him happy and he seems happiest when I leave him alone and just feed him lol. He gets a steady diet of Bok Choy because he HATES mustard greens and is only semi okay with collard. He gets regular feedings of Dubia as well. He went without those for a couple of weeks when our local store was out and I had to make the decision to just start ordering online.

Seriously though, any ideas? Kinda seems like parasites, but then again kinda doesn't so I am confused!
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Re: Possibly Sick? (Long Story)

Postby AHBD » Tue Sep 17, 2019 9:19 am

Hi there, nothing there seems abnormal except if the diarrhea is chronic and long term. When adults shed it does seem crazy long at times but having had beardies since the 90's I can tell you that it's nothing harmful in the least. One thing to see about is whether the new bulb is making the tank too hot. Do you have a reliable thermometer ? BTW, are you positive that Kuzco is a male ? Please post some pics of the trouble maker [ :) ] as well as his entire set up. Also post a pic of his vent [ rear end ] like in this picture. Scroll past the article to see the pics a few paragraphs down.

https://www.beardeddragon.org/articles/sexing/

And here's how to post pics :

https://www.beardeddragon.org/useruploads/ Then use the XIMG to upload them.
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Re: Possibly Sick? (Long Story)

Postby laceyridley » Tue Sep 17, 2019 9:23 am

I will work on pictures of his enclosure when I get home. Our thermometer died so I have a crappy stick on one in the meantime. Unfortunately, since he doesn't like being held, there isn't a way to get a picture of his rear. I just sexed him based on research I had done. That was quiet some time ago. Doing it now would be impossible!
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Re: Possibly Sick? (Long Story)

Postby laceyridley » Thu Sep 19, 2019 5:23 am

[Click image to enlarge]
[Click image to enlarge]
I took a few pictures this morning. He has his basking bulb, his uvb (its the tube kind, whichever one that is okay outside the screen. I can never remember so I always have to look it up at replacement time) and a CHE on the cool side that we only use during the winter. And yes, it gets cold enough in our house to use it then. My husband likes to freeze us out at night. If I don't use the CHE, Kuzco goes into full brumation for several months. Given that he is a little guy, I don't want him doing that if possible. I worry about his health declining if he does. Yes I know a healthy beardie will be fine to brumate, but he has always been on the small side since I got him. And yes, he is missing the majority of his tail. Accidental sibling rivalry at the breeder before I got him. [Click image to enlarge]
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Re: Possibly Sick? (Long Story)

Postby KarrieRee » Thu Sep 19, 2019 5:36 am

We need to know what your UVB is? Please find the box -- to me it looks like its a T 8 the T 5's are usually longer fixture --- if its the T 8 it needs to go inside the tank --- the UVB rays are not getting thru that screen --- he does not look healthy -- he looks thin --- what are his basking temps and how are you taking them? digital probe? infrared heat gun? stick ons? What are you feeding for insects??
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Re: Possibly Sick? (Long Story)

Postby laceyridley » Thu Sep 19, 2019 6:09 am

I went back and looked at my previous amazon orders. My dumbass did get the T8. I'm blaming pregnancy brain. Although, I still doubt UVB is the main problem. He is 1000 times more energetic since I got him this new bulb. But, like I said earlier, the previous bulb was past it's 6 month mark and needed replacing so it's possible he wasn't getting any at all last time and now is getting a smidge. I will have to find a way to mount it. He does like to climb all the way to the top of everything, so I do worry he may burn himself if he climbs on it. We had a digital thermometer mounted on the inside of the tank, but it died. I have a stick on one right now just to get us through until I can buy a new one. I want a temp gun, but haven't been able to find a good deal on one yet. His temperatures have always been around 80-85°f in the center of the tank, and 95-105°f under his basking light. It took us a while to find the bulb that worked when we went through our first winter with him, but we finally got it. He hates crickets, and loves supers. I avoid the supers because they aren't that good nutritionally. He gets a steady supply of dubia with his greens. I'm really thinking it may be too much Vitamin A, because he LOVES Bok Choy. So much that, that's the green he got for a few months. I read on a different site that it was a good staple. But now, I'm finding out that it is only an occasional green because it can cause too much Vitamin A. It's rare, but it does happen. I got him some turnips and squash this time instead of Bok Choy, and his diarrhea cleared up over night and his poop is back to normal. I also changed who I order his dubia from this time to see if that might help. Like I said, we don't have a vet anywhere near us and I HATE it! It makes the entire reptile experience a trial and error process and even though I do immense research, I always find contradictory information. It drives me nuts. I've considered getting him a multivitamin, but if too much Vitamin A is the culprit, I don't want to do that. I've got a picture of him before he started having issues.[Click image to enlarge]
and a picture of what he looked like after [Click image to enlarge]
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Re: Possibly Sick? (Long Story)

Postby AHBD » Thu Sep 19, 2019 6:17 am

That's a decent set up, maybe one nice basking log going from the left to right where the basking bulb. I use basking logs over hammocks any day , hammocks don't retain heat and they offer no support to the body . They can also snag their claws. I don't think he looks unhealthy or really too skinny, just a lean lizard. :) Closer pics could show his body condition though. So for now you just have a stick on thermometer but used to have a digital ? Anyway, you do want to be sure about the temps. How many watts is the heat bulb ? And like Karrie said if the uvb is a Reptisun 10.0 t8 you can mount it under the screen to be more effective using picture hanging wire or something similar. Here's how to do it :

https://www.beardeddragon.org/useruploa ... _large.jpg
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Re: Possibly Sick? (Long Story)

Postby KarrieRee » Thu Sep 19, 2019 6:18 am

Ok yes get the UVB in the tank ---- 6-8 inches from basking area ---- and you need a temp gauge ASAP--
correct basking temps are a must - heat guns can be purchased at Home Depot or Lowes for around $10-12-- digital probes at Pet Smart or Petco---- the UVB needs to be so 6-8 inches and so he can sit directly under it and they do not get hot---- here is a pic of the some one mounted theirs - you can use this stuff for mounting--- command Velcro fasteners- picture hanging wire – plastic zip ties
https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Nylon-Cable ... 1991102297
[Click image to enlarge]

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Re: Possibly Sick? (Long Story)

Postby AHBD » Thu Sep 19, 2019 6:22 am

Well it doesn't sound like he's having any real problem then, good to switch up his veggies like you did. :) The t8's were used for years on top of screens and they really didn't make our lizards ill as long as everything else was in order but hanging it inside will put out more uvb. BTW, you can add kale to his diet as well. If you use a multi vit, just once a week very lightly.
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Re: Possibly Sick? (Long Story)

Postby laceyridley » Thu Sep 19, 2019 6:33 am

His uvb is a Lucky Herp 10.0 T8 15 watt, 18inches long. When he is on his hammock or his other stick in the center of the tank, he is around 4 inches from the uvb bulb. He pretty much stays in that position when he isn't running around. I wish he preferred the basking logs! I removed the one he had because he never used it. He just stayed on the bottom of the tank the entire time. Once we switched to hammocks, he went straight to climbing right on it. Yes, the digital thermometer we had died so now it's just a stick on. I am going to grab a new digital one this weekend.
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Re: Possibly Sick? (Long Story)

Postby KarrieRee » Thu Sep 19, 2019 6:47 am

4 inches from the bulb on top of screen???? Being its a T 8 is there a way you can take the screen off the tank and have the UVB run width wise? What size tank is he in? It looks like there is a bar running middle of tank--- you can set the UVB width wise on that w/ the screen off -- how far is the distance if you set it up that way -- you dont want him closer than 6 inches --and did you take the cover off the bulb -- you want the bulb exposed for better UVB
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Re: Possibly Sick? (Long Story)

Postby laceyridley » Thu Sep 19, 2019 7:11 am

It's a 40 gallon breeder tank because he is such a little dude. There is no way to take the mesh off. Plus I have a cat that will eat him. Everything I have read says the UVB has to span 3/4 of the tank. Switching it to running width wise would change that drastically. My lid is also one the folds open. Meaning there is a hinge in the center. It wouldn't be possible to turn it width wise. The cover was also taken off the bulb, and his hammock was moved down. Not wanting him too close to it is why I have it on too of the screen. He will climb into it if it is placed inside. No doubt about it. He hates being held and is afraid of everything, but if I left it open long enough, he would climb his little tushy right on out. That would wage war with our cat. She would eat him if given the chance.
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Re: Possibly Sick? (Long Story)

Postby KarrieRee » Thu Sep 19, 2019 7:42 am

I would start hand taming him -- get him used to your hand in the tank -- I am doing that w/ one of mine now --- hes in a 20 gallon long at the moment -- you want him to get used to you now so later hes used to you handling him -- you can go slow but definitely work w/ him - I understand about the cat -- but you need to get your UVB set up thats gonna benefit him or he will continue to decline in health
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Re: Possibly Sick? (Long Story)

Postby laceyridley » Thu Sep 19, 2019 7:48 am

I wish trying to hand take him worked. He was very tame as a baby. I even brought him to work with me on a regular basis. Once he hit puberty, he changed. I've tried everything to get him accustomed. Placing my hand in the tank, ensuring I do my best to pick him up from underneath so he doesn't think I'm gonna eat him, placing a shirt in the tank so he can get used to my scent again, and trying to hold him daily. The only way I can get him out now is how I have to do it for his bath. I have to use a hand towel and make a beardie burrito. He still fights me, but once I scoop him up and wrap him, he is content and calms down. The second the towel goes away, he gets royally pissed and tries to bite me. Full Blackbeard, mouth gaping, hissing, and even snapping at me. He was never like that before. He went through puberty around 6 months and has been that way every since. When he was a baby, I could stick my hand in and he would hope right on with no issues. Puberty changed him. I researched beardie personalities and found that though it is rare, there are some that are just grumpy and do best when left alone. They are called twang personality. I still don't leave him alone of course. I try daily, and have been for over a year now, but he just won't have it. I won't give up though!
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Re: Possibly Sick? (Long Story)

Postby KarrieRee » Thu Sep 19, 2019 8:07 am

I am wondering about the lighting - they say it has alot to do w / behavior-- nothing about personality- others on here are gonna haft to weigh in on the aggressive behavior-- they aren't usually aggressive- another choice about UVB is going to the T 5-- that can sit on top of screen
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