I’m sorry this part II has been in the works so long, but I wanted to give it some time before jumping to any conclusions one way or another. I have gotten a lot of emails regarding the Reptaid so I definitely wanted to address what I saw while giving it a fair chance.
Over the span of several weeks I gave Guinevere her doses of Reptaid separately from her Carnivore care and found that she detested the taste of it. She has never reacted so violently when syringe fed any sort of liquids, so I can only assume that Reptaid tastes really terribly, or perhaps because of the alcohol content it stung her mouth. In any case, I began mixing the two doses together to camouflage the taste of it and that had better results. In the weeks that followed I began to see her energy pick up just a little, as she returned to walking around her cage more actively than before. This could have been thanks to the boost in diet from the Carnivore Care, however, and not necessarily only the Reptaid. But although her energy was up her mouth looked no better and no worse, so I do not think that the treatment was helping her fight the infection any more than just giving her metabolism the energy it required.
Finally, even though she remained steady and strong the entire time, even once we returned to the vet for some more testing and to try new medication, she passed away in her sleep one night. She curled up for bed one evening and in the morning she was gone, so I hope that it was not a difficult end for her. I have seen a lot of very sick chameleons that were clearly suffering and deteriorating towards the end and I am glad that this did not appear to be the case with Guinevere, she remained an active, eating, sweet lizard right up until the end so I hope she was comfortable.
In the end, I don’t know that Reptaid did anything beneficial. I am certain that the Carnivore Care gave her the pep in energy that she needed to regain strength and be active again, but I don’t feel comfortable attributing any benefits or blame on Reptaid. I would advise that no one rely on Reptaid to cure, treat, or diagnose anything (always seek professional help for anything serious!) but in very minor cases it might have its slight benefits. I’m just not certain at this point.
So the only thing I definitely want to do in this post is to take a moment to remember Guinevere, who has been such a cornerstone of this blog for the almost 2 years I had her. Despite all the treatments, the vet visits, the manhandling, and the force-feeding she remained such a wonderful, sweet, docile, and trusting chameleon. She never attempted to bite and always forgave you for doing things to her so long as you had food to offer. I did my best to treat her like a queen the time I had her, giving her special accommodations to make life with her handicaps as easy as possible. In the process she taught me all sorts of things about Meller’s and chameleon care in general. And I hope she thought she had a wonderful life, enjoying the beautiful Florida sunshine, spending warm afternoons in summer showers, and eating the assortment of delicious things I always had for her.
So, goodbye Lady! You will be sorely and deeply missed.