Ice Storm - Power Outage - Cold Injury?

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Ice Storm - Power Outage - Cold Injury?

Postby Yusani » Thu Feb 18, 2021 4:38 pm

Hello. We live in Texas and were hit by the ice storm this week. Monday night I went to bed and everything was fine but when I woke up the house was very cold because the power had gone out. I do not know how cold. We have an RV so I went outside and fired up the propane heater in the RV and carried our dragon in there. I noticed he was sort of quivering when he would move. We heated the RV to 80 degrees and kept it there during the day and brought it down into the 70s during the night. We did not have electricity to run his lights. He stayed in a hiding spot most of the time. Wednesday morning I knew of a friend who had power so I carried him over to her house and set up his lights. They held power for several hours and then lost it. I don't think their house got below 60 degrees because they only lost power a few hours. My power came back on and I came and got him this morning. He is back in his normal habitat. He has not eaten since Monday and I noticed that he is still quivering a bit sometimes when he moves. As he was climbing down his rock he fell down. He got back up and craweled up his hammock. It also seems he may be slightly favoring one side of his body. I have an apt scheduled with a vet for 10 tomorrow. What is happening and what can I do?
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Re: Ice Storm - Power Outage - Cold Injury?

Postby KarrieRee » Thu Feb 18, 2021 5:10 pm

I flagged your post to Tracie Drache613 shes our vet tech mod and I believe shes in Tx as well
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Re: Ice Storm - Power Outage - Cold Injury?

Postby Drache613 » Fri Feb 19, 2021 1:45 am

Hello,

They can normally sustain temperatures to the 40's without permanent damage as it has
been reported in the wild. Though, you don't want to keep them at those temperatures but
they are usually ok short term when subjected to those temperatures.
Was he favoring that side of his body before he got cold?
Are you up & running with power yet?
I don't think it could be a cold injury, but a slight possibility. Do you think he could have a
calcium issue perhaps?

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Re: Ice Storm - Power Outage - Cold Injury?

Postby Yusani » Fri Feb 19, 2021 10:50 pm

Thank you. The thought that he could have momentarily been exposed to temps as low as the 40s without permanent damage is encouraging.

We did a vet consult today and she is thinking calcium issues as well. Perhaps he was on the cusp on a problem already and the cold sort of pushed him over the edge? He had no symptoms until the cold. We will be changing up his vitamin regimen (less D3), switching his T8 bulb to a T5, and taking him for blood work on Monday.
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Re: Ice Storm - Power Outage - Cold Injury?

Postby Drache613 » Sat Feb 20, 2021 12:06 am

Hello,

That is good to hear he hasn't had anymore complications from the cold. How is he doing?
Sometimes a stressful situation can bring out symptoms from an underlying health problem
so that is possible he had low calcium levels previously to that situation.
Good, the T5 tube would be better than the T8 which would help him with calcium absorption.
Give calcium without D3 for now, especially if you upgrade to a T5 tube bulb. Which brand
are you going to go with, the Reptisun 10 or the Arcadia D3 12% or 14%?
Are you keeping him warm overnight right now?
Keep us posted on how he is doing.

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Re: Ice Storm - Power Outage - Cold Injury?

Postby Yusani » Wed Feb 24, 2021 7:12 pm

I am afraid you are right, a stressful situation brought out an underlying health problem.

The good news is the twitchy movements and favoring one side seem to have stopped.

He is still not eating well after the freeze. We took him to the vet and had bloodwork done. The vet said his calcium is extremely high. She said normal is up to 8mg/dL and his is 42 mg/dL. She said that his creatine kinase is also elevated. It was 400 and normal range is 200. (I forgot to take down the units.)

The vet said creatine kinase can be elevated when they have not eaten lately - which is how it has been since the freeze.

She said the calcium level is too high to be due to over-supplementing. She said that it is high either because "he" is actually a "she" and she has eggs that need to come out, or if he is male, she suspects cancer. We are going back Friday for sexing and an X-ray.

In response to the husbandry questions, we bought the Reptisun T5 bulb and I have bought the ZooMed Repticalcium without D3.

I am taking this harder than one might expect considering he is in fact a lizard. I had nightmares last night worrying about him!
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Re: Ice Storm - Power Outage - Cold Injury?

Postby Drache613 » Wed Feb 24, 2021 11:42 pm

Hello,

That is a high calcium level. I am glad they are going to do an x-ray, because it is highly
possible he is a female, with eggs. That would actually be the best scenario. If you can
get a copy of the blood test that would be great!
The creatinase or CPK often elevates after stress or injury or a tail stick, too.
Great, the Reptisun 10 T5 is a very nice bulb!
They are never just a lizard & when you are attached, they touch your soul. Please let us
know how things are going.

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Re: Ice Storm - Power Outage - Cold Injury?

Postby Yusani » Fri Feb 26, 2021 5:26 pm

The x-ray showed Jupiter is a female and has eggs. The vet said that the x-ray showed the eggs were still high up and have not been shelled yet. The vet also said that the x-ray showed Jupiter has good strong bones. She wants us to syringe feed her Oxbow Critical Care Herbivore and give an oral antibiotic via syringe and a calcium supplement via syringe daily. She said we should only be offering insects 2-3 times per week.

The vet said that the eggs will either be re-absorbed or she will lay them. She said the antibiotics are because she is at risk for having infection since she has non-fertile eggs inside her body. She said that we need to come back in 2 weeks and do another ex-ray and see if the eggs have traveled down, if they are smaller, or if they are exactly the same. She said if they are exactly the same they need to be removed surgically. The vet says we should not provide a dig box or a nesting box because she will eat the sand and become impacted. She said that to prevent her from having eggs again, we should take her light hours down from 12 to 9 and feed her less insects and more greens.

Do you agree with this course of action?
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Re: Ice Storm - Power Outage - Cold Injury?

Postby SandP » Tue Mar 02, 2021 4:31 pm

Absolutely not. Taking antibiotics just because something may happen does nothing but kill off all her good bacteria and possibly make her feel unwell. Also to say not to have a lay box is in my opinion dangerous and I can't believe a vet would suggest that. If she has eggs and needs to lay them not providing her with a spot to do that can cause her to become egg bound and can kill her. I have never heard either of those things to prevent a dragon from producing eggs. Personally I wouldn't give her the antibiotics, would make her a lay box and find a new vet.
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