As the number of people keeping pet chameleons in their homes continues to climb, the number of questions that we see people asking also continues to increase each month too.
Due to there being so many people who are brand new to keeping a pet reptile choosing to start with a chameleon, we commonly see some questions that experienced reptile keepers overlook so we wanted to focus on these today.
Due to chameleon poop being unique, just like many other types of reptile poop, we see a range of different questions about chameleon poop from each month and wanted to answer them in this article.
Our hope is that we will be able to help as many of our readers who are new to keeping a pet chameleon better understand their chameleon’s poop, what it should be like, and how to tell if there are any potential problems.
What Does Chameleon Poop Look Like?
Chameleon poop is going to look different depending on what the chameleon has been eating and how long it has been since they last went to the bathroom.
A chameleon that has been eating mostly live insects is going to have very different looking poop than a chameleon that has been eating only fruits and vegetables.
The reason for this difference is that live insects have an exoskeleton made of chitin.
This chitin is not always digested by the chameleon’s stomach and can show up in their poop looking like the insect it once was.
Fruits and vegetables, on the other hand, are going to be mostly digested by the time they are excreted and will look more like mush.
The size of the chameleon is also going to play a role in what their poop looks like.
A baby or juvenile chameleon is going to have very small, pellets while an adult chameleon is going to have larger, log-shaped poop or poop that looks like two main parts joined by the urate.
What Does Chameleon Poop Smell Like?
Healthy chameleon poop is not going to have a very strong smell to it.
This is due to chameleon having a membrane around it that seals any scene into it so they tend not to have smelly poop when the chameleon is healthy, on a suitable diet, hydrated, and free from parasites.
If your chameleon’s poop does small then it is often a sign of parasites in the poop as they can stop the membrane from being formed around the poop that seals the smell in.
In some cases, a poor diet, issues with internal organs, and dehydration can also cause a chameleon’s poop to smell more due to issues with the membrane.
How Frequently Should A Chameleon Poop?
As we mentioned, the diet of the chameleon is going to have a big impact on what their poop looks like but it can also affect the frequency of their poop as well.
A chameleon that eats a lot of live insects is going to defecate more often than a chameleon that only eats fruits and vegetables.
This is due to the insects being higher in protein which is harder for the chameleon to digest and breaks down in their stomach much quicker.
Fruits and vegetables, on the other hand, are going to take longer to break down and be digested so the chameleon will not need to poop as often.
The age of your chameleon will also play a role in how frequently it poops too.
A younger chameleon will usually poop once every other day where as an older chameleon may only poop once or twice per week with this being natural and healthy in some cases.
Some adult chameleons may not poop for around two weeks in certain situations with this also being considered natural but the longer the chameleon goes without pooping, the more risk there is.
This is usually due to constipation or the chameleon not eating much and although constipation can be a serious issue, some chameleons can just go through phases where they don’t eat much for around two weeks.
Why Is My Chameleons Poop White?
It is totally normal for chameleon poop to have a urate sack with it that is usually white but can sometimes have a tint of yellow or orange to it too.
This is because chameleon poop and pee at the same time and the pee is turned into urate by the chameleon resulting in the white sack that you see.
In some cases, all of the chameleon’s poop can be white and this is usually an indication of a serious health problem and you should seek assistance from a veterinarian as soon as possible.
If all of your chameleon poop is white then it could be due to problems with parasites, kidney disease, a poor diet, or issues with other internal organs.
What Does It Mean When A Chameleons Poop Is Yellow?
The most common reason that a chameleon’s poop will be yellow is due to the chameleon reabsorbing the nutrients from the urate that would usually be white causing the urate sack to be yellow.
This is relatively common in chameleon but tends to be less common in pet chameleon due to most of their diets being optimized to exactly what the chameleon requires.
A chameleons poop being yellow is also an indication that they are not getting enough vitamin A in their diet.
This vitamin is essential for good eye sight and a healthy immune system and if your chameleon is not getting enough of it then it can cause problems.
In some cases, a chameleons poop being yellow can also be an indication of a liver problem so it is always best to seek assistance from a veterinarian as soon as possible if you notice this.
If your chameleons poop is orange or has hints of orange on the urate then this is usually a strong signal that your chameleon is dehydrated, especially if the urate is starting to crystalise too.
How Do You Clean Chameleon Poop?
Cleaning up your chameleons poop is actually very simple and easy to do.
All you need is a small container of warm water and a little bit of paper towel.
Place the paper towel over the top of the poop and then soak it with the warm water.
The warm water will help to break down the poop making it much easier to pick up.
Once the poop is soaked, simply lift the paper towel off of the cage floor and dispose of it in the bin.
Repeat this process until all of the poop is removed from the cage.
You may need to clean the cage more often if your chameleon eats a lot of live insects as these can often leave a residue on the cage floor.