Another Rescue!!!

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Gray-bearded Member
Yesterday I drove the 30 minutes to my hometown to pick-up some emergency Superworms since my online vendor isn't shipping right now due to the weather (I live in central Pennsylvania, it's been in the low teens to the 40's for the past 2 months). There's an independent pet shop there that opened when I was 12, and they specialize in reptiles and fish. They had what looked to be a very old juvenile/very young adult male dragon in a tank, no stickers or any info on the tank, and he was obviously very, very thin, and that dull, all-brown color they get when they haven't shed properly in a long time, with patches of black retained shed on his beard and legs, and some sticky, dark blueish-green stuff all over his beard and his head. He was rough. I asked about him, and I had to bring him home...

Someone found him last Thursday just sitting in a cemetery in State College, just shivering and not moving with a full black beard, but obviously alive and alert. They grabbed him and took him to the Petco in State College, who refused to take him in. So they asked around and were directed to the pet shop in Philipsburg 24 miles away, so they took him in. I know the owners of the pet shop, the employee called them, so yesterday I brought him home. I named him Fender!

After letting him bask under a nice, strong T5 UVB tube in a temporary 99L plastic tub, I gave him a bath, where he turned from a horrible, dirty, dull brown color all over to the most beautiful light gray all over, with a light gray and white striped tail. He almost looks like a Wit Blit. I must have taken off 2 entire layers of retained shed, and whatever the thick, greasy bluish-green stuff is, it's almost all off, it's the consistency of JB Weld, that's what it reminds me of...who knows how long he has been outside or what he's been in. The students left Penn State the middle-end of December, and they are notorious for just releasing Bearded Dragons, Snakes, etc. when the semesters end, and he was found in the cemetery that Joe Paterno is buried in, so I don't think that's a coincidence at all, you'd have to be from here to understand, it's ridiculous and sad...welcome to Happy Valley.

Anyway, he's a sweetheart, he rode home on my shoulder yesterday in the car, and he snuggled last night under the comforter on the couch with me. He accidentally bit my hand today while I was feeding him some BSFL, and I got my first Beardie bite ever that broke the skin...that hurts!

Now we just need to get some weight on him! He's not emaciated, but he's extremely think. He's eating like a machine so far, so hopefully that continues. He pooped both yesterday and today in his bath and then again in his tank today, and it's like black tar. The pet shop said he hadn't really eaten since the people brought him in, and they thought he probably has parasites, we'll see. I'm taking him to my CRV on Monday to get checked-out, but overall I think he's okay health-wise, just been abandoned, starved, and scared. It's literally been in the teens here overnight the past month, so I don't know how he survived it, but he did. He's 17" long with a small tail nip that is completely healed, but I bet he only weighs 200 grams at most, probably closer to 150. Poor little dude, just thrown outside to die...not this Dragon!

I'm going to get some photos up tomorrow once my phone charges, it died in the middle of taking them, lol. Just thought I'd do Fender's introduction. He's now got the blackest beard I've every seen in my life as he got a glance at Izzy while I was feeding her...He's a bobber... :blob8:

CooperDragon Sicko
Staff member
He's lucky we've got a bit of a thaw going recently! I'm so glad he found his way to you. You will give him a great home and the best chance to thrive =) I look forward to reading updates and seeing photos of Fender :blob8:


Gray-bearded Member
Original Poster
I'm working on the photos, my cellphone won't charge, I had it plugged in all night and no charging. I think I accidentally crushed the metal pins inside the to AT&T today, this will not be cheap...

Fender is doing really well, he fell asleep on me again last night on the couch, and when I put him back in his tank he immediately sported the blackest beard I have ever seen in my life! I mean, it was black as coal! He's got a little separation-anxiety, and I don't blame him...

That's exactly what I said Cooper, had he been dumped outside a couple of weeks earlier he'd be dead for sure, it was down to 0 for a week or so, it was so cold the batteries in both my truck and car were killed, and I remember how literally frozen I was out there first thing in the morning with my jumpbox, trying to start my car. And I had on heavy-duty UnderArmor, ski boots, and a winter ski jacket...poor guy would have been a Beardie-cicle...I don't know how people can do these things, just put an ad on Craigslist and rehome him for free, at least you're not putting him out in the freezing cold to a certain death. There are people that would sooner let a Beardie die than give them away for free, they want $300 for an adult beardie and their stuff so they recoup their's just a shame.

One question for anyone who might be reading, and I know I have no photos but I think you'll get the idea...I mentioned that Fender has this thick, oily, sticky stuff on his beard in 2 spots that is a dark bluish-green in color, and looks the consistency of JB Weld. Well he's had 2 baths, a little has come off from just soaking him in the water, but yesterday I noticed when he was wet that his entire body has a very "oily" feeling to it, like he's covered in baby oil or something similar. I can only feel it on his body when he's wet, but the very thick, sticky, bluish-green stuff on his beard is there all the time, and when it gets wet his entire beard feels "goopy", like it's got bubble gum all over it, but it doesn't...Any idea on what I could use on him or let him soak in that might help get whatever this oily, sticky stuff he got into off of him? I gently tried to brush off the blue, gum-like stuff off of him with a soft toothbrush in the bath, but it didn't help at all. It's not bubble gum, but that's kind of what it looks like, but it's much more oily and goopy, like JB Weld. That's a perfect comparison as to what it is (if you know what JB Weld is like)...

Could a dab of Orange-Fast cleaner on the spots with warm water be alright? I'm not going to soak him in it (I did try regular old blue Dawn Dishwashing detergent, but that didn't help), just put a little dab on each of the spots where the blue-green goop is, that Orange handcleaner usually gets everything off, and I always keep some in my workshop. I read the ingredients and there's nothing at all toxic, in fact it's actually pretty natural stuff...

CooperDragon Sicko
Staff member
The battery in my car died too. The guy at the parts store said they completely sold out of batteries a few weeks ago and were carrying extra stock. A few years ago (January) a sherif was driving around a rural road near Dubuque (IA) and saw a dragon laying on the side of the road. He stopped and picked her up. She was lifeless but he brought her to a vet in town and the vet slowly warmed her up. After a while she came to and they were able to get her fully revived. She was lucky both the sherif stopped for her and the vet knew how to revive her. She is now the in house dragon mascot at the vet's office =). These little guys sure can be tough when they need to be.

As far as the oily and waxy skin goes, Dundee had that to an extent when I first brought him in. I think it was just layers of filth or perhaps a reaction to some kind of irritant. I gave him regular warm baths and added dr bronner's baby mild soap to the bath. After a little while this seemed to do the trick and his skin returned pretty much to normal. I'd give that a try.
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