Hiding/sleeping, + for pinworms but vet won't treat

aparadoxinflux

New member
Hi all, I think this is my first post here, though I've lurked a whole lot. I'm hoping to get some advice because I really feel at a loss and frustrated with my vet right now.

I have an 11-month old beardie named Zuko that I brought home in March-- when I brought him home he came with a clear fecal from the breeder. I brought him to my vet for an establishing visit back in the beginning of August to just get him examined and get a fecal, especially since he was having some runny/not super formed poops.

The vet said she didn't see anything out of the ordinary in the exam, but when the fecal came back it came back positive for pinworms and coccidia. She said she didn't want to treat the pinworms but did want to treat for the coccidia, so we started on a treatment of ponazuril (two doses over 48 hours). I went through the super duper cleaning with a steam cleaner and ammonia-based cleaner, had him in a quarantine set-up with paper towel substrate (he's usually on tile) and just a basic hide and a basking spot made out of plastic bowls from the dollar store so they'd be easy to clean.

Since that first vet visit and stripping his enclosure, he hasn’t been himself. He stopped eating much at all (no interest in roaches, maybe he'll eat a few super worms and if I'm lucky a bite of his greens), where before he was scarfing down 20 roaches in a feeding. And I'm not even sure if this is just him being suddenly not interested in roaches, because he was and is still eating silkworms and hornworm treats fine, and will eat some superworms as well (never been a BSFL fan though).

He's been constantly hiding in the corner in the shade under his hammock under the basking spot, and I have to pick him up and put him under it because he won't voluntarily bask. He's also been digging/scratching at the corner of his cage (the vet examined him and thought he may be female but honestly its been inconclusive--we can't tell whether we see hemipenes or not and he's got relatively small but still definitely visible femoral pores, but regardless, she didn't feel any eggs to indicate being gravid).

After two weeks we did a follow up fecal and he came back clear of the coccidia, but still with what she said was a somewhat high level of pinworms (didn't give me a number because they did it in house and just told me it was a significant amount??). My vet really strongly suggested not treating the pinworms because she said the treatment can have bad side effects, but I'm concerned because obviously, there are still symptoms happening. She said they almost never treat for pinworms unless there's an overbearing load and they're sure its presenting illness.

I was hoping that his lethargy was mostly from stress of having his cage upended, but it's been back together for nearly a month now, all his enrichment back in, and he's still acting the same. When I take him out of his enclosure after he's warmed up he acts fine, when he's in the enclosure he just goes right back to that shady corner.

Despite not really eating much at all though, he's not losing weight and is in fact still gaining weight, and occasionally pooping, if at a much less frequent rate than before.

So something like this makes me think, "okay maybe he's just going through brumation?" but the vet has been really adamant that unless I'm actually changing temps and lights in the tank, he wouldn't be brumating -- but I've seen enough of you all having this same issue that this makes me sort of not trust what she's saying. And she's an ARAV certified vet so I'm so confused.

For husbandry details -- he's in a 36x24x18 melamine enclosure right now, ambient temps (measured with a digital thermometer) on the cool side are 82 right now, 95 on the hot side, and basking usually is between 100-110 measured with a temp gun. UVB is a reptisun T5 10.0, 24" so about 2/3 of tank (and only about 5 months old--new one is in the mail), and overlaps with the basking bulb. Humidity is usually between 40%-50% (that's another thing--everywhere i've read has suggested under 40% humidity but the vet said 40%-60%?), and substrate is tile. I want to change him to soil and play sand at some point but gotta clear all this, first.

I’m just not sure why he’s still been just hiding and laying down and not moving much, eyes at half-mast like he’s getting ready to sleep, for pretty much a full month now. And if it is the pinworms, wouldn't he be losing weight?

We also just did bloodwork to rule anything else out (so that's another $200 I've spent this month), and I just got the call back today and she didn't see anything diagnostic-- the only thing she saw was that his acidophil cells were a little elevated. The next thing she's suggesting is an x-ray, and if that doesn't come up with anything, we can move to ultrasound. I'm hesitant to keep going through all this testing if in fact nothing is actually going on and it's brumation and he's healthy, or in fact this is actually all pinworms related and we should just dang treat.

Could this all be pinworms, and should I really advocate more for treating them? I talked more with her and she said they really don't ever treat them unless super serious, and if we were going to actually do so she'd want to do another fecal and send the sample off for more vigorous testing to get an actual count, and get a second opinion, etc, because she kept saying the side effects of the medication could be liver damage, bone marrow damage, and death.
What the hell is going on, and do I need to seek out another vet? could be going on? Am I just going through a bunch of needless stuff and he's just brumating a little young?

I’m just concerned he’s not getting enough UVB or heat, and if he's not eating much, I'm concerned I'm not getting enough supplementation into him and all this could develop MBD.

Photo of him in the spot he’s been hanging out in, below his hammock, for tax and so this doesn't get buried.

239384052_10105237778052658_225955442238110166_n.jpg
 

Drache613

BD.org Sicko
Staff member
Moderator
Hello,

That can definitely be a frustrating situation. Actually, deworming is very safe, so I am not
sure why the vet doesn't want to treat pinworms if the levels are that high.
At his age, he can definitely brumate, that is very normal. If he is not losing weight, it sounds
like he is very healthy. If his pinworm levels are that high, he may or may not lose weight but
it can cause lethargic behavior or other problems.
The vet cannot determine the sex of your dragon? If you gently lift the tail up to where it curls
slightly so we can see the back end of him we should be able to determine the sex for you.
If it is female then she could be developing eggs but males do like to scratch around also if
they are trying to brumate.
If you have or can get a copy of the blood tests that would be great.
He should have adjusted to any new tank changes by now so I doubt that would be causing
any of the issues. The humidity levels are usually best kept at a range of 30-40% really to help
keep respiratory issues from developing.


Let us know how he is doing.
Tracie
 

aparadoxinflux

New member
Original Poster
Drache613":2ptyht6w said:
Hello,

That can definitely be a frustrating situation. Actually, deworming is very safe, so I am not
sure why the vet doesn't want to treat pinworms if the levels are that high.
At his age, he can definitely brumate, that is very normal. If he is not losing weight, it sounds
like he is very healthy. If his pinworm levels are that high, he may or may not lose weight but
it can cause lethargic behavior or other problems.
The vet cannot determine the sex of your dragon? If you gently lift the tail up to where it curls
slightly so we can see the back end of him we should be able to determine the sex for you.
If it is female then she could be developing eggs but males do like to scratch around also if
they are trying to brumate.
If you have or can get a copy of the blood tests that would be great.
He should have adjusted to any new tank changes by now so I doubt that would be causing
any of the issues. The humidity levels are usually best kept at a range of 30-40% really to help
keep respiratory issues from developing.


Let us know how he is doing.
Tracie

Yeah honestly I feel totally confused and anxious and I have no idea what to do, and if there is indeed something wrong with him I don’t want to just…let it keep happening. I don’t know why my vet is so against the dewormer to try, especially if he’s been this lethargic for so longer and her answer isn’t “well then it’s probably brumation!”. What is your advice— should I push her for the deworming and see?

What risks ARE there from doing a round of the fenbenzadole? Do you see any reason to continue with other diagnostic testing like x-rays and ultrasound before trying deworming treatment?

In terms of the sex— yeah I got him at 5 months old and the breeder told me he was definitely male, and based on everything I’ve read and seen I thought so too, but then this vet said he was female when she didn’t see huge pores and said she didn’t see hemipenes (but I think I do see the bulges when I look at his tail)— we even tried with the flashlight but couldn’t see enough to make out?
Here’s some photos of him:

UVrjJ5U.jpg


RbZRNFa.jpg
 

aparadoxinflux

New member
Original Poster
Hi all, just bumping this thread to see if anyone has any replies to my update, and also if anyone might be able to properly sex my beardie based on the pictures I added?
 

Drache613

BD.org Sicko
Staff member
Moderator
Hello,

So sorry I missed your update!
That is a healthy looking male, as the lateral bulges are definite. The pores sometimes take
time to develop & get larger.
How is he doing today?
The primary risks of deworming would be lethargic behavior, toxicity or overdose if not dosed
properly, dehydration, & sometimes reduced appetite. Most of the time deworming is very safe
& is routinely done by a good number of reptile owners.
Is he still being lazy & wanting to sleep more?
I don't think deworming would hurt him so you can definitely ask the vet again for deworming
him. If she wont do it, I have an online reptile supply store & sell it too, in liquid or paste form.
If you want to do a deworming, I can send you my website link.

Let us know how he is doing.

Tracie
 

aparadoxinflux

New member
Original Poster
Drache613":12su96ii said:
Hello,

So sorry I missed your update!
That is a healthy looking male, as the lateral bulges are definite. The pores sometimes take
time to develop & get larger.
How is he doing today?
The primary risks of deworming would be lethargic behavior, toxicity or overdose if not dosed
properly, dehydration, & sometimes reduced appetite. Most of the time deworming is very safe
& is routinely done by a good number of reptile owners.
Is he still being lazy & wanting to sleep more?
I don't think deworming would hurt him so you can definitely ask the vet again for deworming
him. If she wont do it, I have an online reptile supply store & sell it too, in liquid or paste form.
If you want to do a deworming, I can send you my website link.

Let us know how he is doing.

Tracie

Hi Tracie, thanks for responding again! Glad to know he looks healthy to you-- and I definitely saw those bulges, and so was definitely confused when the vet said he was female!!

He's still pretty much the same, I've been consistently just having to lift him out from his corner or inside his hide to put him up to bask, and he really only spends a few minutes up there and then goes right back down. Still not touching his salad really, but tonight when I put him up to bask a bit and fed him when I got home from work, he actually ate a few roaches in addition to some superworms, which made me so happy!

For the deworming, I'm actually seeking out a second opinion and found another herp vet somewhat close to me, and I'm dropping him off tomorrow morning for a drop-off appointment to get looked at, since they had a last-minute opening. Not ideal, since I won't be able to be there in person for the appointment and will have to talk to the vet over the phone, and it's like a 45 minute drive away, but I at least want to speak to another vet for what they think I should do-- and the fact that my current vet sexed him incorrectly, combined with the whole deworming hesitation definitely makes me second-guess her judgment as well.

There's another vet I emailed as well who is a little bit closer, but they didn't have any openings until the end of the month. So I guess I'm just shopping around for someone that I fit with well and trust!

I'll give you all an update after I hear more tomorrow!
 

Ryanps

Member
Following because I am going through almost the exact same thing myself for a similar aged female. Vet appointment early next week to see what is going on.
Ryan
 
Hi! I’m curious to see how your little guy has been? Similarly we just started a dewormer/antibiotics combo and so I’m reading around trying ti understand and see what some can expect. I hope all is well!
 

KimM

Member
Following because I am going through almost the exact same thing myself for a similar aged female. Vet appointment early next week to see what is going on.
Ryan
Following because I’m also dealing with this. Well over 400$ in vet charges and X-rays for vet to basically tell me nothing and do nothing and my beardie seems to jot be improving at all. :( I’m frustrated and not sure what to do when the vet doesn’t even seem to know what she’s talking about. She literally told me to put crushed walnut substrate in his tank after telling me he was possibly impacted. I don’t know what to do anymore and so worried he won’t use his back legs again ☹️☹️☹️
 

KarrieRee

BD.org Sicko
Beardie name(s)
Hiccup he is 4 and Blaze is 3
Following because I’m also dealing with this. Well over 400$ in vet charges and X-rays for vet to basically tell me nothing and do nothing and my beardie seems to jot be improving at all. :( I’m frustrated and not sure what to do when the vet doesn’t even seem to know what she’s talking about. She literally told me to put crushed walnut substrate in his tank after telling me he was possibly impacted. I don’t know what to do anymore and so worried he won’t use his back legs again ☹️☹️☹️
@KimM
Can you please start your own thread so we dont get confused between everyones post and please post your lighting and tank temps how your taking them and a pic of him and your tank please - here is a website to find another vet www.arav.org crushed walnut is not a good substrate - go over the diet as well please
 

KimM

Member
@KimM
Can you please start your own thread so we dont get confused between everyones post and please post your lighting and tank temps how your taking them and a pic of him and your tank please - here is a website to find another vet www.arav.org crushed walnut is not a good substrate - go over the diet as well please
@KarrieRee Apologies, I'm new to this site/forum. I will start a new thread and provide everything you've asked for.
 

Staff online

Members online

Still Needs Help

Latest resources

Latest posts

Latest profile posts

I see my lizard is being given Allopurinol 100ml tablet 10mg/ml (0.4) and tramadol 0.2ml every other day to help with gout. I have tramadol at home can I water it down and give it to her and if so do anyone know how much to water down ?
323A2CAE-899F-4592-90D2-DC37D45A30F1.jpeg

Baby photo! Look at how little and cute I was!!!
C34BF977-474F-4233-BF7E-8C797567E429.jpeg
Buffy snuggling with my partner!!!
Gout in bearded dragons
So freaking handsome I just love youuuuu so much 💕

Forum statistics

Threads
151,471
Messages
1,213,346
Members
73,964
Latest member
annaplant
Top Bottom