variety of issues


New member
Hello, thanks for hosting this forum. I'm sorry for no pics today but I'm writing from work. I have raised a 3 year old beardie named Lemon from 5.5 inches to her now 18 inch size, and she was, until recently, 704 grams.
I believe the husbandry is excellent, in a 4'x4' tank with heat lamps, reptisun bulb, calcium powder mixed with vionate, and we breed our own dubia roaches and mealworms.

When Lemon was little, she got a small injury near the tip of the tail from a light water bottle falling. You could see the pinch but the tail stayed supple and not black.

Something else happened more recently, although I never saw it happen - a second injury to the tail causing a bend, and sometime later, the tail started turning black below the earlier injury. I can't be sure if the second aggravated the first or not.

We took her into the vet because of the darkening but the tail was still supple, the vet was not concerned, and so we only did the home remedy treatment seen on youtube with neosporin/triple antibiotic ointment and Betadine.

She seemed fine, then stopped eating. For a while she did not lose weight, then 4-6 weeks passed, she would not eat, and the tail rot definitely showed a circulation problem overnight one day. The vet amputated the tip.

Before the surgery I was sent home with oral antibiotic to prepare her for surgery on appointment day, then after the surgery I was sent home with injections for every 3rd day. I did not do the 1st 2 very well. I believe that little or none got into her. I did better on the 3rd and 4th shot but then the tail darkened above the surgery site.

The vet sent us an hour away to the specialist...I didn't know the animal hospital where we were going did not consider themselves to be that. Anyway, the specialist found abnormalities such as discoloration in the mouth and a hole in the fold where one rear leg meets the body, an abscess, and she also described some red in her coloring that she said was abnormal but I thought was always there, along with some dots on the belly. And obviously she by now had lost weight and her belly was empty. She recommended, or led me to the idea of euthanasia at this point. Or we could have done some more things (I can't remember exactly) with a 50/50 shot of survival and a 100% shot of a long recovery if it went that way.

We took her home for a night and she was still so lively that we could not imagine euthanizing. I still have the oral antibiotic and 2 products from a gecko treatment some time ago - Reptaboost and Rot Guard. In a desperate attempt to help, I have been giving her those 3 things daily while waiting for an appointment that we have today.

Lemon has gained back significant weight in the last week, her waste has remained normal although a little more liquidy last night (understandable), and she has a vet appointment today.

I may have caused the problem with failing to get the antibiotic into her well enough after the surgery (although the specialist an hour away didn't think so), or by doing something I never did before, earlier in the summer letting her enjoy the cicadas (although everything I read says that shouldn't be a problem either). Regardless, moving forward we have this appointment today and I am wondering - can she live as happy and healthy as possible for a while on Reptaboost and Rot Guard, or is there something else if she is never going to catch bugs again? She looks at the food but hasn't gone for it since the beginning of this story still. I tried some crickets recently to change the stimulation.

She does open her mouth to be fed the reptaboost and rot guard paste/liquid (with calcium and vionate mixed in). Any advice is appreciated. Sorry for the length!

EDIT - one more thing - long ago we helped a gecko by using Oxbow Critical Care Carnivore. Maybe that's a viable solution, at least for a while.


New member
Original Poster
One more thing since it doesn't look like my edit worked - maybe Oxbow Critical Care Carnivore would work?

AHBD Sicko
Hi there, I'm sorry to hear about poor Lemon's trouble and how concerning this is for you. When you get a chance, post pics ASAP of her tail [ dry ] as well as her full body and pics of her enclosure. It's good that she's getting some supplements in her . At 700 grams at 18" that would have been overweight but at least it helped her out while she fasted for a while. Cicadas are highly nutritious and would not contribute to any of her problems, only if she picked up parasites from them or possibly if they had been sprayed with pesticides. The Critical care is fine, just don't feed too much or too often so that she will get hungry for regular food again. From your description it doesn't sound like she needs to be put down, you can probably help her along. Put some pics of your girl ASAP though, especially of her tail .

Drache613 Sicko
Staff member

So sorry for all of the trouble your girl has had, stemming from a tail injury.
Do you have any pictures you could post so we could see the condition of her & the tail?
I agree, cicadas shouldn't pose any health threat nor cause any type of infection in which
she has been through.
Are you still giving any antibiotics for her?
What are you putting on her tail currently, any type of cream or ointment on it?
I don't think she needs to be put down either, she deserves a chance to get better.
Since she is at a good weight, she wont need a lot of Critical Care/Carnivore Care to maintain
her weight. Just enough to help support her nutritional status. How much do you give to her,
ml wise?
I love the name, Lemon, very sweet. The tank size of 4x4 is great as well. Which UVB light
do you use, just so we can double check everything?

Let us know how she is doing.


New member
Original Poster
I want to thank everyone for reading and replying to this. After her vacation, we got our original vet back. She thought the specialist from the hour away was crazy for thinking of euthanasia.
We continued the remaining oral antibiotic, added "recovery" medical dog food, carnicare's herbivore product, a deworming just as a precaution, and everything looks fine. Lots of force feeding going on for this 21 days before the next vet visit, but Lemon is lively and plump again. Sorry for this delay and failing to do the is just a bit overwhelming right now. The UVB is a reptisun long bulb, the 10.0. She's not grabbing food on her own yet, but she knows that for now we are stuffing her each day!
I'll try to remember to keep you posted if/when that happens.

KarrieRee Sicko
Beardie name(s)
Hiccup he is 4 and Blaze is 3
Make sure the UVB is properly placed
inside the tank for a fine screen mesh 12-15 inches directly over the basking decor piece
top of screen MUST BE A WIDE HOLE 8-10 inches directly over the basking decor piece
this is extremely important

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