Stuck Shed Help

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keegan150
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Stuck Shed Help

Postby keegan150 » Tue May 29, 2018 8:05 pm

I just got a blue tongue skink from a local reptile shop and I was told that he was about to shed because he has these hard spiked up scales. After asking some other owners they were thinking it was stuck shed so i tried to give him a soak and the spots became brown and soft, which further leads me to believe they are stuck shed. I tried rubbing them with my fingers/nails/q tip/paper towels, and this got some of the shed to come out. I didn't want to do it too much as to stress him out as little as possible so I put him away. Before returning him to the enclosure I noticed more brown areas on the bottom of his back legs. I didn't any pictures of that but they just looks hard lumps, as if there is a scale with a stuck shed underneath it. Hopefully people from this forum have some advice. I have pictures of what it looks like when he isn't soaked. Any advice is appreciated. He is a halmahera skink and he is very small, maybe 7 inches long.
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kayla990
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Re: Stuck Shed Help

Postby kayla990 » Wed May 30, 2018 5:34 am

Congrats on the new Bluey - hmm I'm a bit wary about what the pet shops say. I'm hoping it is from the start of a shed, but so far I've not seen raised scales during our owns Halmahera's shed.. just to be on the safe side, have you checked for mites? As raised scales is one indicator for that (use a damp kitchen paper and wipe down to see if you find any).

Besides for the soaks, have you got a large water dish in the enclosure? (If not, good to get one he can fit in, but not too deep so he can easily get back out). How are you doing with the humidity? As Halmaheras do best around 90% average humidity. I'll see what others say, but I'm wondering you've got an Irian Jaya as the bands are relatively thick and near full black legs (though you'll still want to aim for high humidity regardless for now). Do you know if the scales are slightly milky-coloured under the body? We tend to see that happen maybe 4-5 days before the shedding happens.

Quick tips for increasing humidity: substrates such as cococoir or mulch mixed with sphagnum moss work well (which can also be mixed in with the type you have already). Along with manual daily spraying, you can use fogger machines on a timer if it dips a lot during the day.

Keep us updated!
- Hons. Degree Animal Management -4 years volunteer in a Zoo -10 years volunteer in animal shelters -Enclosure enthusiast
keegan150
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Re: Stuck Shed Help

Postby keegan150 » Wed May 30, 2018 9:29 am

Yeah when I was working with him I didn't notice any mites crawling around after rubbing the scales down. And yeah I have a shallow dish that he can fit his body and my humidity is 90-80% except for near the basking spot where it is usually in the low 70s.ive provided a wet box hide with sphagnum as well as filled one of my cork tubes with sphagnum. I'm using lugarti reptile bedding as a base with a layer of cypress mulch on top and on opposite side of the basking spot I have a layer or sphagnum on the surface.

I wouldn't describe them as milky colored. They look light brown when I soak them, I've gotten a picture of the area I'm particularly worried about now. And a better body shot if you want to identify him better.
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kayla990
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Re: Stuck Shed Help

Postby kayla990 » Wed May 30, 2018 10:10 am

Awesome, thanks for the info - sounds like you're well set up already :D

Glad to hear it's unlikely to be mites too. Ahh, looks like he'll shed in a few days (as usually the black pattern on the tail/belly scales go slightly cloudy/milky coloured instead of pure black like in your picture, and will continue getting whiter until he begins to shed fully). Also - back to thinking Halmahera again, thanks for the further pics :D

It's strange with the brown marks.. I think you could be right suspecting stuck sheds (as doesn't seem inflamed or irritated). I would suspect if it is old shed (possible multiple sheds if they didn't keep on top of things at the pet store) that it will reduce over time on it's own. If however you see the skin looking tight or restrictive (any swelling or redness) then will need to help out more. In the meantime, I would recommend continuing with the soaking where you feel comfortable doing so.

I may be overlooking things, but does he seem to use his joints ok when moving? I'm not sure why but they seem to be more puffy and pointy than expected (such as the back right side leg at the joint of his foot and leg.... and the front leg; left elbow has an odd 'point' to it that seems unusual).

Glad he's with you though, seems like you know what you're doing ^__^
- Hons. Degree Animal Management -4 years volunteer in a Zoo -10 years volunteer in animal shelters -Enclosure enthusiast
keegan150
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Re: Stuck Shed Help

Postby keegan150 » Wed May 30, 2018 11:49 am

Yeah the brown areas seemed to be softening up with soaking so I'll continue to try that. His locomotion seems normal as far as I'm aware. I doesn't seem like he gets tripped up or walks with a limp or anything like that. I think those bumps you see are just areas where he has the stick shed making him look bumpy
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Re: Stuck Shed Help

Postby splashy07 » Fri Jun 01, 2018 12:25 pm

Keep an eye out for mites regardless. Halys come in with them more often than not. Hope not, such a cute little thing. I second that he's in the right hands, and found a great home. Congrats on your new pet, and all the best.
keegan150
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Re: Stuck Shed Help

Postby keegan150 » Fri Jun 01, 2018 6:47 pm

Yeah I'm definitely paying attention for anything. An update, after a few days of soaking and such, the situation has improved for the most part. He actually is going into shedding himself it seems, which I think was good timing for both of us. Him shedding is making it easier to soak and rub away the layers of stuck shed on hes legs. The little bumps of scaled turned out to be single scales of laters of stuck shed and after his actual shed came off they took the lumps away but it now looks like a scarred area that I'm sure will heal over time. The only concern I have moving forward is that the worst areas of stuck shed leave the skin/scales a bit raw (as in pinkish in color). I worry of infections, so i applied some neosporin where I felt it was necessary. Thanks for all your help everyone, I hope I am doing the best for my new baby bluey :)

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