Underweight/impacted bluey? Help!

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Underweight/impacted bluey? Help!

Postby Antjedotc » Fri Feb 28, 2020 8:36 pm

Hello, this is my first post on here! I'm looking for help regarding my halmahera. I purchased him from an expo around a month ago, and he seemed a little underweight (68 grams, hip bones visible and a little spine). He ate very well for the first few weeks, until last weekend.

Basically, he pooped during the vet trip, and the vet noticed a piece of cypress mulch in it. After that, i switched his substrate to reptile carpet and mounds of sphagnum moss.

Ever since, he hasn't had much appetite, and he hasn't pooped even once (which is unusual for him)! I gave him a warm bath, and he did expel some urates, but no actual poop.

I'm worried about my little guy. He seems to be only a few months old, so he's probably pretty sensitive.
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Re: Underweight/impacted bluey? Help!

Postby Janella » Sat Feb 29, 2020 7:33 pm

So first and foremost, a piece of mulch in them, isn't going to hurt them to much. Now if your skink had an issue of eating the mulch for some reason, I would switch substrates. I wouldn't have switched to reptile carpet and the moss. These lizards absolutely love to burrow. I like using Zilla jungle mix with reptile bark on top. Some people use just plan too soil, eco earth, or similar. If your skink hasn't pooped in a week, I would contact your vet again and it may be time to do an x-ray to check for impaction. In the meantime I would soak your skink for 20 minutes each day. Also you could do gentle massage of the under belly to help get things moving in his abdomen. Also make sure your temps and humidity are correct as well. Sometimes, if they aren't skinks will stop eating.
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Re: Underweight/impacted bluey? Help!

Postby kingofnobbys » Sat Feb 29, 2020 10:22 pm

A week isn't very long between poos , now if you were talking 2 or 3 weeks , then I'd be start wondering .

It can take 2 to 5 days for food to be processed by a skink (food into mouth ==> poo out other end ) depending is activity levels and temperatures in the tank. Even longer if moving into dormancy ( as a lot of skinks do in the colder latitudes ( higher than 40 deg Lat ).

If you think there's a blockage , cut back on the solid foods until the skink poos ( else you are just adding to the putrifying blockage in the GIT).

There are natural laxatives than can be given orally , my fav for skinks and dragons is olive oil, for a full grown adult about 0.4ml by mouth , for a juvenile about 100g maybe 0.2ml by mouth , usually does the trick inside 2 days , if not repeat .
Gentle tummy rubs while in a luke warm bath ( 32 ish deg C ) often helps a lizard poo.

if the bit of substrate is large and indigestible , a vet can take an xray to see where it is and it's size and to determine if there's an issue.
Forcing it through under pressure using water pumped into the vent or stomache is a LAST RESORT , especially water pumped into the stomache !!! too easily can fine it's way into the lungs (very bad news !!) .
And be aware that giving a enema is a VERY DANGEROUS procedure , a lot of lizards end up dead within hours of this procedure.

Make sure the vet is a REGISTERED REPTILE VET who has experience with skinks , else I'd only allow them to take xrays.
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Re: Underweight/impacted bluey? Help!

Postby Janella » Sun Mar 01, 2020 4:16 am

So , I do agree that it can take a skink days to process food stools, however when there was already a concern about a potential foreign body and no stool had been produced since then, you need to be concerned.

There is the natural laxatives that was suggested in the previous post that can be used. Some reptile vets even swear by mixing it with a little applesauce to make it taste sweeter.

Lastly I would never ever suggest forcing water into a reptile. All I said was a soak with gentle stomach massage will help move things through. You only want to use enough water that it rests just under your skinks shoulder area. I used to work with a reptile vet and we did this all the time to help saturation to loosen sheds and help move stool through a reptile. My specialist reptile vet who has over 30 years experience also does this. Again it is just soaking, NOT an enema or putting water down your skinks mouth. Enemas can be done on reptiles, but again it needs to be done with a highly qualified reptile vet who knows what they are doing. As I suggested with your reptile, I would go back for an x-ray first and verify if indeed there is a blockage or not. Perhaps your skinks poo was all cleared out at last visit and if your pet isn't eating that is why your not seeing any poos yet.

If this was my pet, I would pet a call into your vet and say your pet isn't eating and you haven't seen stool. See what they say.

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