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Skink not eating/hibernating?

Posted: Sun Feb 19, 2012 3:07 pm
by Phobia
So Donatello is about 9 months old now; everything was going good and he was eating fairly well until about November. He suddenly would only take a few nibbles of his food, and wouldn't come out of his bedding for days at a time. So I did a little research, and oh, he's trying to hibernate! I read that it isn't really good for the younger skinks to hibernate so I tried keeping him active, which failed miserably. So I've been letting him hibernate for the last few months; although its not really hibernating since he'd grace the world with his presence every two or three weeks. He also hasn't eaten a decent meal since November, maybe late October. Also, I don't believe he's eaten a decent meal with veggies EVER. He hates them. :/ Anyway, these last couple of weeks he's becoming active again, but still won't eat and actually goes out of his way to avoid any food I offer him. The veggies I've been offering him I get in a little baggy from the local Petco; its a mix of finely chopped bok choy, zucchini, carrots, green beans and peas, (its made for iguanas, uromastyx, bearded dragons and other veggie eaters) and I mix them in with the IAMS adult chicken food. (which he used to dive right into) I was told by another BTS owner that sometimes juvenile lizards will sometimes just stop eating for a while for no real reason. I know reptiles are pretty hardy, but as a first time lizard owner, I'm getting a little worried. ;w;

And on a side note, he hasn't lost any weight at all! Three months of no food and attempting to hibernate which should burn up fat reserves, and he still so pudgy. When he does come out, he's as alert as ever and isn't acting anything like a lizard that just rolled out of the burrow after three weeks. Any ideas when he might stop his little hunger strike and stop trying to hibernate?

(PS; Back in November I tried crickets to get him to eat. They worked, but then it was like he forgot all about his actual food, so I stopped giving him them. I also I haven't tried any fruits yet since he's not even accepting veggies. My friend's iguana did the same so she ended up ONLY feeding her fuirts; she eventually got all these diseases like rubber jaw and MBD and died. ;o; )

Re: Skink not eating/hibernating?

Posted: Sun Feb 19, 2012 3:17 pm
by Katrina
Hi Phobia!

Donatello is brumating, rather than hibernating. There is nothing wrong with juvenile skinks brumating - it is completely normal, just like they would do in the wild. If he hasn`t lost any weight, then don`t worry - he is just fine. Keep offering healthy meals about once or twice a week. Canned dog or cat food is good, with the greens and veggies mixed in well. Add some calcium powder on top. If he doesn`t eat, don`t worry - he might still be waking up, or he might be wanting to look for a girlfriend rather than eat. Either way, as long as he isn`t losing weight they can go for a long time without food.

If he won`t eat his veggies, then just use tough love - keep mixing them in with his meat or dog food until he will eat it. He will eventually get hungry and if you mix it in well then he can`t pick it out. :D It sounds like everything is normal, so keep doing what you have been doing and don`t worry. It is great that you are monitoring his weight - as long as he isn`t losing quite a bit of weight, then everything should be just fine. Double check that your temperatures are good. Good luck! He should start eating fairly soon, but don`t worry - keep offering healthy meals until he eats everything including the veggies.

Re: Skink not eating/hibernating?

Posted: Sun Feb 19, 2012 4:10 pm
by Richard.C
katrina,s spot on,even when u try to keep them warm,if they can sense the cold outside they will go into brumation mode,usually if your cool end temps are low they will happily stay down there and brumate,if your tyke is holding weight theres nothing to worry about,soon when back ground temps rise he/she will start trying to eat you out of the house,being a young animal,you can try adding more protein in its diet,and gradually add more greens along the way,some need to learn to eat greens,so mixing it with preffered food can help

Re: Skink not eating/hibernating?

Posted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 12:06 pm
by Street
That sounds similar to what mines doing at the moment. I just came on here to find out why and looks like I found my answer!

Hes barely eaten anything since the start of the year, about when it started getting really cold outside actually so my house is colder at night and during the day when I'm in work! I've been giving him food a couple times a week and he just ignores it most of the time especially if theres veg involved! He normally loves snails but he won't even look at them at the moment although he has eaten some egg when I've put it in for him.

Guess I'll just have for it to warm up a bit and keep leaving him food, just doesn't seem right when he doesn't eat for a few weeks!

Re: Skink not eating/hibernating?

Posted: Thu Oct 23, 2014 11:59 pm
by Jameshill
I would say, Its very important to take care of the diet and also the food that you are giving to him. Give him the healthy food.

Re: Skink not eating/hibernating?

Posted: Fri Oct 24, 2014 5:30 am
by Richard.C
Thix threads got cob webs all over it,its that old so im locking thread