Thinking about getting a chameleon but don’t know how to care for it? Follow these six effective ways to take care of your pet chameleon easily.
All your friends have dogs or cats as pets but you’re looking for something exotic yet easy to maintain and keep you company.
From a possible list of such pets, a chameleon is an option but you’re not sure if you can keep it properly.
Pet chameleons require much more maintenance than dogs or cats. One reason for this is that, unlike dogs and cats, chameleons don’t like being caged or held.
With this guide for beginners on how to take care of your pet chameleon, you’ll know everything that you need to know to make your buddy feel at home.
1. Watch the Diet
Just like any other lizard, the chameleon loves to eat insects and worms. Crickets, worms, roaches, etc. are some of their favorites. You should feed around six insects or worms every two to three days.
However, don’t give them insects from around the house to feed on as you don’t know if they can cause any harm to your pet. Instead, get insects like roaches from a dependable source like https://www.topflightdubia.com/.
Chameleons will occasionally eat green vegetables and leaves. However, there are some that you should avoid, like spinach, lettuce, cabbage, etc. Leave some vegetables in the terrarium and the chameleon will eat them when they feel like it.
Lastly, chameleons love water droplets. They will drink water from leaves on any rainy day. So their water delivery should have a droplet system. This is convenient and preferred for chameleons. You should supply water once or twice per day.
2. Notice Behavioral Patterns
You need to keep a close eye on your chameleon’s behavior. Unlike dogs or cats, they don’t make noise or sound when in distress. So you need to be aware of what’s going on with them.
When your pet chameleon shows a darker color, that basically means they are stressed. You should change their location and ensure that they have enough air and proper lights. These can help them overcome stress.
Dehydration, low body temperature, malnutrition, etc. will make the chameleon less vibrant or dull. These can be early warning signals that your pet chameleon is developing a problem.
To overcome issues like these, consulting a vet can be a wise decision. But before doing so, give your pet chameleon some alone time.
Another important thing to consider is the camouflage of the chameleon. If they try to blend in more with the environment, they might be feeling threatened. So you may need to consider their placement to determine why it is happening.
Chameleons use energy when changing colors. If they are frequently changing colors, that may not be an issue. However, if they look dizzy, you need to leave them as they are. Sometimes, giving them alone time is the best medicine.
3. Choose the Ideal Shelter
Chameleons are wild lizards. For shelter, they climb trees and hide behind pieces of bark. But pet chameleons won’t find such freedom in the house, so you need to buy a terrarium that’s large enough for them to feel safe.
The ideal terrarium is 1m in length, 1m wide, and 1.3m in height. That size will be perfect for any adult chameleon.
However, going for a bigger terrarium is never a bad choice. So if you want your pet chameleon to have more space, you can expand the terrarium. Pet chameleons love to roam around, and it keeps them stress-free.
Also, you can throw in some wood bark or logs for your pet chameleon to imitate a forest-like experience. Having a spacious terrarium for your pet chameleon is a good thing.
4. Keep an Eye on Location and Temperature
Exposing chameleons to light is very necessary. They require UV rays to stay healthy and happy. They also require UVA and UVB sunlight. You need to expose them to direct sunlight. Avoid using a glass window, as it blocks all the necessary UV rays. For about 10 hours per day, make sure they are in the sunlight.
Chameleons love an ambient temperature. The optimum basking spot for your chameleon is 85° to 95° Fahrenheit. The terrarium’s temperature should be within 70° to 85° Fahrenheit.
You can use an additional heat emitter or UVB lamps for your pet chameleon. Remember to keep the light duration between 10-12 hours. Continuous exposure to light can be dangerous for chameleons.
5. Carefully Handle Your Chameleon
Another important consideration about chameleons is handling. You may want to cuddle your chameleon and play with it just like other pets. But that can have major drawbacks for them.
As mentioned before, chameleons love peace and quiet. You need to ensure that it gets enough alone time. Frequently touching them or cuddling them will make them stressed. They are not a big fan of it.
However, don’t be dissatisfied. You can play with your chameleon occasionally. But you need to be careful not to stress them. Gain their trust first, and help them be as comfortable as they can be.
6. Choose the Perfect Environment for Shedding
Just like any other reptiles, your pet chameleon will shed. This is more frequent at an early age. As the reptile ages, the frequency of shedding lowers.
To ensure proper shedding, you need to keep it at the perfect humidity level. That works as a catalyst, and your pet chameleon will require less energy. Also, chameleons shed their skin little by little. It won’t fully shed its whole skin like a snake.
7. Clean the Terrarium Weekly
Lastly, it is always a good idea to keep the environment of your pet chameleon clean.
You should clean its terrarium on a weekly basis. Proper sanitization is essential.
That’s about everything regarding the guide to taking care of a chameleon. Hopefully, you are now more confident about taking care of your pet.
Getting a pet is an exciting idea and even more so if it’s not the usual cat or dog. But you also need to remember that there are certain ways to maintain their diet and living conditions to make them feel at home.
In this guide, we have covered the dietary requirements, the signs that show your chameleon is uncomfortable, and other pointers to help you take care of your pet chameleon properly.
Have fun with your new friend!