When you have a Chameleon, you likely know its habits, when it is not feeling well, and if something does not look right. When your pet has poop stuck in its vent or cloaca, your first instinct may be to grab and pull. If the poop is stuck, pulling is not a viable option.
If your chameleon has poop stuck in its vent (cloaca), you can try to soak it in warm water for fifteen to twenty minutes to see if it softens it. The stool is likely very dry and hard, so loosening it requires hydration. You could also try lubricating around the edges with some K-Y jelly.
If you have ever had this happen to your chameleon, you want to know what to do. In this article, you will learn what to do, why this could happen, how to prevent the “clog” from occurring, and the best way to keep everything free-flowing for your chameleon. So read on for more information.
Your Chameleon Has Poop Stuck In Its Vent – What Now?
Knowing what to do when your chameleon has poop stuck in its vent will help keep you calm and sure of how to help your pet. The stool will be hard and dry, so do not just try to pull it away.
Soaking your chameleon’s anal area for about 15 – 20 minutes in warm water may soften the poop enough for you to remove it.
The “poop” hanging out could be a prolapse, which would not be poop. However, a prolapse could come from straining to poop. The intestine or sex organs could hang out and become dried out.
If this is the case, you can attempt a sugar water solution to help reduce swelling. Take a cup of sugar and add enough warm water for the sugar to dissolve.
Place the backend of your chameleon into the warm water. Give it something to grasp. Let your chameleon sit for about 15 minutes.
When dry, coat K-Y Jelly around the area, which will not soften but may grease the area.
This application can supply enough moisture and lubrication to allow the organ to be gently pushed back inside the anal cavity. If these interventions do not help, you may need to take your chameleon to the vet.
Why Does This Happen?
If your chameleon has poop stuck in its anus, it may be due to constipation. They may be experiencing lethargy or lack of appetite, and their stool will likely be dry and hard.
The leading causes of constipation in chameleons:
- Inadequate mist in the enclosure
- Consuming bugs that are too big
- Temperature too cool
The main issue is being able to release the poop from the vent because if you fail to do this, more stools can form, and your chameleon can become impacted.
Tip: Give your chameleon a little cod liver oil in a syringe, but only once weekly, or a small drop of mineral oil on the food.
How to Prevent it in the Future
The main factor involved in a constipated chameleon is lack of hydration. They also need the correct humidity level in their enclosure.
The following explains these factors in more detail.
Hydration is Important
You can help your chameleon with proper hydration by misting the enclosure or the greens you feed them. Mist some water on their lettuce (if your chameleon eats greens) and see if it helps to move the poop through the anus.
One of the best and harmless ways to get your chameleon to drink is to provide water through a dropper, as they can be reluctant to drink independently. Try this, and the poop may loosen.
You can also increase the chameleon’s fiber intake by feeding its live prey a high-fiber diet, and when the chameleon feasts upon the insect, it ingests the fiber that the bug ate. (This is called gut-loading.)
The right amount of fiber can motivate the poop to come out. Ensure you give them enough water because the fiber may not help.
You can also moisten their vent, which you can do by soaking your chameleon’s anus in warm water for fifteen to twenty minutes or providing sufficient hydration.
Misting the foliage inside the enclosure will ensure that they ingest enough water. You can set up a misting system that will keep them hydrated.
Tip: Misting your chameleon’s enclosure or their greens can be a huge help.
Keep the Temperature Even
To help make defecation easier for your chameleon, you should maintain the humidity of its enclosure.
Humidity helps the chameleon remain healthy and ensures their body processes are normal.
Misting the enclosure is also important to maintain the humidity, as water collects on the glass and the plants. Misting and the heat lamp create a humid environment to help keep your chameleon healthy.
They Should Only Eat Proper Size Insects
When a chameleon eats a bug bigger than it should, it does not digest it properly, as the insect is not long enough in the digestive tract.
Eating too big insects is not ideal for your chameleon, as the feeder insects might come out as they go in. In the long term, this will cause impaction.
If your chameleon has poop stuck in its vent, it is most likely due to constipation. You can try soaking their anus in warm water to help release the trapped stool, which will moisten the area.
It is also essential to keep them properly hydrated and their enclosure humid.