So update on Fernie... He's now on Tramadol and Allopurinol for pain and treatment of gout. I know I'm supposed to reduce his protein intake though I haven't been able to regulate it as much as Fernie has. He used to eat 40 and now he eats 25-35 a day probably due to the illness. He won't eat extra veggies offered to him any other time than in the morning when he normally gets them. The vet said while reducing his cricket intake would be good if we could supplement him with veggies, if he's not taking the extra veggies than to continue feeding him as normal. He pretty much said we're damned if we do and damned if we don't considering if he's not eating much at all, that will harm him more quickly than the protein being digested. Overall, he's doing okay. He's much better than he was prior to the medications though I'm aware the painkiller probably has something to do with it. We are bathing him four times a day and giving him around 3-4 mls of water orally as well. He actually made his way around his tank on his own today though I don't exactly encourage that right now as he has a lot of trouble walking. He's very brightly colored (citrus) in the morning and we give him his pain meds around 1-2 pm after his first cricket feeding. After we administer the tramadol however, he gets very dark and kinda just lays there for a few hours. We think the tramadol may be upsetting his stomach a little because he won't accept food until 4-5 hours after this medication. We were wondering if we were to give it to him in the evening about an hour before lights out, if that would be better for him and he could sleep through any unpleasant side effects? I just wasn't sure if it would be as effective the next day though it is supposed to last 24 hours. I know their metabolism is slow so I wasn't sure if it would be appropriate to give it to him close to light out. Can anyone help me out with this? I would also like to move this thread to a less urgent board considering he's hopefully on the mend and its no longer an emergency. How do I do this?
Also, I'd like to note: When he does get dark and depressed after the pain meds, if we give him a bath he brightens right up only to go dark again when returned to his tank. His basking temp is around 100-102 degrees. I'd prefer it to be a little higher, but when he could move around on his own he never liked temperatures above 101 degrees and would always move out of the heat to a cooler area. Does anyone know why he'd brighten up in the tub only to go dark again in his tank?
How is your boy doing today?
I have not seen or heard of NSHP having a high uric acid level, normally only gout.
Though the calcium to phosphorus ratios could be related to the NSHP however. Has he had an Adeno test done yet?
If he wont eat greens, make a greens slurry to give to him daily. That will help to get fluids into him, also.
Which calcium are you giving now? How much D3 was he given? It doesn't always cause trouble, but if given too often could possibly may have done damage. Has he had UVB lighting the entire time? I do agree, he is very young to have full blown gout.
I think that tophi most likely represent the cause of swelling on the areas of concern. Has the swelling gotten any better?
Is he enjoying the black cherry juice I hope?
He may not like it quite as hot so maybe try to keep the basking to around 98 so he doesn't get overheated & will bask longer.
Maybe that will help with him darkening up in his tank. He could be getting too hot right now.
The Tramadol could be upsetting his tummy some. I would give at least 2 hours before bedtime just so it has time to assimilate some before lights out.
I can move your thread if you would like. I hope that he is doing a lot better now. Keep us posted on Fernie.
Hi there, thanks for checking in. He hasn't had an adeno test done yet. Our vet said its very common for them to test positive even with no symptoms. So he said that we could have one done but it wouldn't really tell us a whole lot if he did test positive and either way, if it were adeno, we wouldn't be able to do anything for it. We thought we were going to lose him yesterday. He was extremely weak and lethargic and didn't eat one single thing, not even his favorite butternut squash. He was very dehydrated even though he is bathed very frequently and given water orally. His breathing was a little irregular and he was very dark. His spine was twisted a little and he was in a strange position most of the day. We called the vet and made an appointment to have him euthanized today. However, when this morning rolled around, we gave him a nice long soak in the bath and he pooped out a very massive poop. His spine straightened out after that, and he started eating some veggies again. Now he is colorful and basking with a good posture. We figure he was slightly impacted due to the dehydration so we have cut out the crickets for the next week and are supplementing him with extra veggies (which is eating!) and some chicken baby food mixed with carrot baby food. Our vet said that would be find as long as it didn't go on for weeks. We have ordered a critical care formula in the meantime and it should be in this week. We figure that we should allow his gut to heal a little bit before giving crickets again and keep his foods soft for now. He is still drinking the black cherry juice. And the swelling may have gone down a little on his front elbow but its hard to tell because it is still very swollen.
We are giving him just regular calcium with nothing added right now...no D3. Its a good brand...repta something. Repta-cal? He was initially given the calcium with the D3 everyday for about a month and a half as that's what we were told by the pet store. It has 48 000 IU of D3 in it. He has had UVB lighting since we had him, we use a mercury vapor bulb by exo terra at 125 watts.
Thank you for all your advice, it has been so helpful. I'll make a green slurry for him right away and keep his basking temp around 98 degrees. Hopefully that helps him out after his pain medication. He doesn't seem to have a problem with his normal basking temp prior to the medication. And yes, you can move this thread to a less urgent board. In two weeks we will be testing his blood to see if the allopurinol is having any effects and go from there. We will keep you updated. Again, thanks so much!
Also, if it were NSPH, how would we go about correcting the imbalance of calcium to phosphorous? We are making sure that the veggies he eats have the correct ratio but I'm not sure what else we could be doing. Is a value of 3.4 very low for calcium?
Poor guy, he was impacted then. I am glad that cleared out for him & his spine straightened out also.
I think you are doing everything you can to get his calcium to phosphorus levels evened out. That level of calcium the 3.4ml/dl is very low. The average should be between 8-12. The oversupplementation could have caused it, I will agree.
The medication could contribute to dehydration so continue bathing daily with oral fluids. The critical care should help also. Using chicken or turkey baby food will help also. Hopefully he can start eating crickets again real soon. I hope he likes the greens slurry, too.
I hope the black cherry juice is helping him out. The allopurinol will work, but it will take some time. Did you get a chance to get any pictures?
The repcal calcium is fine, you can give that daily for him, just once a day.
You are using the Solar Glo 125 watt? That is an ok bulb. Do you have a way to test the UVB for it? I have experience with that bulb & we are using one right now which is pretty decent. Though we had to send two back due to poor UVB output.
With Adeno, it could have a lot to do with calcium malabsorption possibly. You can be proactive & treat if you know they are positive, just to help out.
I will go ahead & move it to the Health forum, ok?
I will check back soon.
I haven't had a chance yet to get any pictures but I recently discovered I can bluetooth them to my computer from my phone. I'll do that today and have them up by this afternoon. His poops are still very large and malformed...instead of being straight and cylinder like, they are more balloon shaped. Yesterday, when he cleared his impaction, we noticed a red/orange tinge to his urates. We have been keeping an eye out for color changes. However, today, they are back to normal...very white. His spine is still slightly curved, though it may be due to the way he's holding himself. I think one of his arms is giving him grief as it keeps it very close to his body and doesn't want to bend it open. If he sits perfectly straight in my hands, his spine is almost perfectly straight. I think when we get the blood test done in two weeks, we will have another x-ray done as well. His first two x-rays looked good as far as the bones go. Though in his most swollen arm, the joint at the elbow was slightly cloudy. I want to make sure he is not also developing a metabolic disorder. When I post the pictures, I'll make sure to get a shot of his spine when he is sitting on his own and again in my hands so you can see the difference and compare. I'd hate for him to develop any permanent deformities.
Oh, and no, we don't have a way to test the uvb output unfortunately. The devices we were looking at cost a couple hundred dollars. His lamp is mounted ontop his tank screen. Its not a mesh screen though, its metal, and has lots of open spaces in between the rungs. I'll take a picture of that as well. We were concerned about the uvb getting through recently and we can open up a part on the tank which we can mount the lamp right over so that its unfiltered. But the temperature tends to go up significantly and its hard to keep it steady. We are going to replace this lamp soon anyway as its going on four months of use. However, if we were to order in a inside the tank uvb tube...which one would you recommend? We know that the repti-sun 10.0 is a good one and the arcadia 12%. We aren't sure which one is better. And would you recommend using those brands over the MVB? From the studies I've read online, the MVB is supposed to have the highest uvb output. Maybe there's a better one on the market?
Zoo Med ReptiSun 10.0 and Arcadia 12% are both top of the line UVB fluorescent tubes. For MVBs, I suggest either the Arcadia or Mega Ray. I had issues with a LONG wait to get my Mega Ray but Harley seems to love it. I've hard good things about Arcadia MVB too but they are EU 230volt so you will need a step up transformer. I personally use both a 100 watt Mega Ray MVB and an 18 inch ReptiSun 10.0 with a 160 watt basking bulb next to the MVB on a lamp dimmer in a 4ft cage.
MVB do have a lot higher UVB. On average from what I've read, MVB is about 3 times the UVB level of a fluorescent tube. Of course it also depends on bulbs. I talked to a guy who has a UVB meter and he told me his Mega Ray after 2-3 hours of being on was producing 130-140 uW/cm2 UVB at 12 inches. I believe ReptiSuns put out around 30-40 uW/cm2 UVB. That is why MVBs are to be no closer than 12 inches and UVB tubes are supposed to be 6-8 inches. Also general rule of thumb is if you are using a MVB, don't use calcium with D3 and if you are using a UVB tube, use calcium with D3. The reason is MVB put out so much UVB which is what reptiles use to make D3 on their own. UVB tubes put a much lower level of UVB so you need to supplement the D3 since the reptile wont be making as much. There are arguments though about how much digested D3 a reptile will actually absorb so who knows.
Bottom line is both the Reptisun 10.0 and Arcadia 12% are equally good. Whichever one is more available in your area and better priced is what I would use. If I had to choose MVB or UVB tube, I would pick MVB but you need to make sure you keep the MVB no closer than 12 inches to the highest point of the beardie. Like I said though, I personally use both but Harley has a cave she can climb into to escape the UVB if she wants.
photobucket link...not sure how else to get them on here.
In the fourth and fifth picture you can see how swollen his left elbow is. The pictures of his foot is for the swollen toes. I'm aware he is underweight, he's been underweight since I've had him due to parasites which we treated and then now this. He was actually gaining weight quite well prior to the onset of gout.
Those are some great questions.
The Megaray a long time ago, used to produce 220uW/cm2 at 12 inches so it is not as strong as it used to be. I know that there have been some issues with all of the MVB's in the past 4-5 years with the type of glass & phosphorus that were being used.
I recommend the HO (high output) Arcadia or Reptisun tubes. They are very good & you can use them with a 65K tube daytime bulb in the dual light fixture along with your Solar Glo for maximum UVB output.
Currently I use the Arcadia MVB with the converter/transformer along with the Arcadia HO tube bulb & it works great.
The swelling could go either way. It could be partial metabolic issues just due to the calcium to phosphorus ratios being off, along with pseudo gout symptoms.
I am glad that he is gaining some weight now, he has been through a lot lately!
Let us know how he is doing.
I've actually been thinking of going with the Arcadia MVB once the MegaRay gets low. I'm guessing with the Arcadia MVB you must get the 230 volt fixture as well or can I use the dual fixture 110 volt plugged into the transformer?
With a heavy heart, I am sad to say we had to euthanize Fernie. Due to the chronic dehydration from the kidney disease, he got impacted again and could not relieve himself on his own. The vet did not have the supplies to perform an enema and the only thing we could give him for the impaction would have further dehydrated him and killed him. Even if we had cleared the impaction, it would have kept happening as the dehydration wasn't going away. He was still on a veggies and slurry only diet. I noticed the day before that his poop had a lot of undigested material in it and was extremely large. His body had become incapable of properly digesting his food as well. When we took him in, the vet said he was extremely impacted. He had lost the function of his back legs as well as was in a considerable amount of pain. But I'm happy to say, Fernie was happy yesterday, his happy color even though he was impacted and paralyzed in his hind legs. He enjoyed a last meal before we brought him in. We cuddled him for a while before we took him. He was such a great lizard with loads of personality. Thanks for all the help and advice on this board. <3