Are Chameleons Good Pets?

Well, you will be happy to know that yes chameleons can make a great pet, but there are a lot of things you should know before jumping in to get one of these reptiles.

They require a lot of care but you will not get the reward of snuggles or admiration from these guys like you would a dog or sometimes a cat (we know they can be loners too! While the information below is general you will want to do a deeper dive into finding out more about the specific breed you are interested in to ensure you can meet their unique needs.

This species typically live for about 6-8 years as a pet and male veiled chameleons have been known to grow up to a foot long which is pretty big and will require a larger enclosure! image credit: Vaughan Leiberum/Flickr These are a more difficult species to keep as a pet due to their high sensitivity to change. They are smaller than the Veiled breed typically only measuring up to 8 inches in length and live no more than 5 years on average.

image credit: Philip Gould One of the cooler looking chameleons in our opinion because this one features horns on the males! image credit: Nany Merolle/Flickr Last, but certainly not least is the Panther Chameleon which is the brightest colored of the bunch! While each species of chameleon requires variations in their housing and care needs there are some general concepts that remain the same for all.

If this is not an option sometimes ice cubes on a screen at the top of the cage letting the droplets drip through to the leaves can work too. Typically chameleons enjoy a variety of insects as their main source of food like worms, crickets, wax moths etc. You should try to find a veterinarian that has experience with reptiles to ensure their health is properly assessed and maintained.

You may have some trouble finding local stores that offer what your chameleon needs to stay happy and healthy, but Chewy offers a large selection of food and habitat needs to make sure you have one happy pet! But typically chameleons only bite humans if they are provoked or feel a sense of danger. Because chameleons are generally a more independent animal that can stress easily they are not the best option for younger kids.

We also hope you will talk to those that have experience with this species so they can really offer you the best way to bring a chameleon into your home. This nonprofit organization is solely dedicated to helping chameleon lovers learn more about them and how to properly care for them. We highly recommend reviewing these forums before making a decision on the breed you want and if it really is the right pet for your family!

There are a few great books out there to help you learn more about these amazing creatures before you decide to get one to make sure it is right for you! Because chameleons do require very special care and equipment to keep them healthy and happy and sometimes owners do not realize how much work they are, they give them up to rescues. We love this story from a couple of years ago about the heroes that saved over 100 chameleons and geckos it is people like this that you want to seek out so you can adopt!

If your answer to the question do chameleons make good pets is no for your family, you can still help them in other ways! Donate to a local rescue or even something simple like sharing a post can make a huge difference. While I would not recommend them for a first time pet owner If you read all of the above and are willing to do what is needed to keep your chameleons happy and healthy then go ahead and adopt one.

Are chameleons good for beginners?

Chameleons are not the easiest pets, or easiest reptiles to keep. That said however, they can make good pets ; even for beginners! … Chameleons also require a commitment to care and maintenance on a level that exceeds what other reptiles require.

Are pet chameleons friendly?

Ultimately they prefer to be left alone. If you define friendly as not being aggressive towards you then yes, chameleons are friendly as most chameleons, while aggressive at times, aren’t aggressive all the time and will eventually learn to be accepting, even if mildly, of your presence.

Do chameleons like to be handled?

No chameleon enjoys being handled by people. … Chameleons should only be considered as pets on par with tropical fish – great to behold, but not intended to be actually touched or held.

Does chameleon poop smell?

Chameleon poop is not particularly messy or smelly. You should clean it as soon as you see it in the enclosure but don’t worry if you don’t notice it right away and the poop has dried up. This will in fact make it easier to clean.

Chameleons are captivating creatures that can change color, move their eyes independently of each other, and catch prey with their long, sticky tongues. It is no wonder that so many are keen to keep these exotic reptiles as pets.

If you are considering offering a home to a chameleon, keep in mind that these reptiles have unique habitat and feeding requirements that make them more difficult to care for than some other small or exotic pets. This reptile requires specific conditions to stay healthy and happy, therefore providing a suitable cage setup is no small task.

Chameleons live in the trees, which means their tall enclosure must include a large number of branches and plants to provide the dense foliage that these reptiles have in their natural habitats. Chameleons also require extra supplies like a UVA/UVB light source, thermometers, humidity gauges, and misters or drip systems. Learning a chameleons habits and nature can help you properly read signs of distress or happiness.

Chameleons are highly susceptible to stress, but their displays of anxiety can easily be missed or misunderstood. It is very important to be able to understand when your chameleon is anxious since elevated stress-levels can make these pets more prone to illness or disease . Other common health issues for chameleons may include calcium and vitamin A deficiencies, stomatitis, and metabolic bone disease.

Do you love the slow-paced, quirky-eyed, ever-changing look of the chameleon? These exciting creatures have quite a fascinating appeal. If you arent familiar with owning a chameleon, you might be wondering if they would make a good pet for you.

Scientific Name: Chamaeleonidae Family: Chamaeleonidae Rafinesque Natural Habitat: Rainforests, tropical climates Temperature: 70-80 degrees Fahrenheit Temperament: Shy, slow, solitary Type: Arboreal Colors: Brown, green, red, blue, orange, yellow Length: 12-20 inches Weight: 0.4-7 ounces Lifespan: 2-10 years Experience Level: Intermediate Chameleons, scientifically called Chamaeleonidae, hail from hot climates from rainforests to deserts.

They typically live in tropical climates of Africa, South Europe, Asia, Madagascar, and Hawaii. If the idea of showing off your chameleon excites youyou might want to take note of their personality. Image Credit: PixabayIf you wanted a chameleon that will hang out on your shirt all day, that isnt going to happen.

Chameleons can get very sick or irritated by certain perfumes or laundry detergents, so be careful when you touch them with your hands or stick them onto your clothes. Image Credit: PixabayChameleons are generally small lizards, only reaching about 18 to 24 inches, tail included. These lizards require a cage that is at least 4 L x 4 H. They will spend most of their time leisurely climbing up the branches, snoozing as they bask.

You can buy misting systems that go off automatically every few hours, keeping the plants watered and giving moisture to your chameleon. Image Credit: PixabayYou cant just feed a chameleon anythingthey have pretty strict requirements. Most owners dip gut-loaded insects into the powder to take care of nutritional needs in one swoop.

Alternatively, not having enough vitamin D3 can create unhealthy bone structure and poor skin health. Image: Wikimedia CommonsIf youre a first-time reptile owner, chameleons can be a challenging pick. They require extremely specific environmental conditions, become sick easily, and dont handle external stressors very well.

Image Credit: PixabayYou might never see your chameleon at the bottom of their cage unless something is medically wrong with them. Rubber tree Golden pothos Jade Hibiscus Spider plant Weeping fig Image by DEZALB from PixabayIts widespread knowledge that chameleons can change color to blend with their environment.

Chameleons can shift the space between crystals, which changes the light reflection from the skin. It might be a bit trickier finding an exotic vet who has chameleon medical experience. But before you purchase your chameleon, youll want to check out local exotic vets so you can plan for routine care.

Regular veterinarians that take care of more common pets like dogs and cats might not have the experience to provide reptile exams. Choose Physical Appearance the intriguing look of a chameleon is probably what attracted you to the idea in the first place. Choose a chameleon that melds with the image you have in your headbut dont buy solely on this factor.

So, not only are you caring for a sometimes challenging reptile, but youll also have to create a natural environment with healthy, lush plants and proper moisture. Make sure you have an exotic vet in line so you can take your chameleon for routine checkups or for emergency visits. If youre looking for an easygoing reptile that doesnt mind frequent handling, you might want to search for other cold-blooded cuties.

Nicole is the proud mom of Baby, a Burmese cat and Rosa, a New Zealand Huntaway. A Canadian expat, Nicole now lives on a lush forest property with her Kiwi husband in New Zealand.

Chameleons come in all shapes and sizes, with considerable variation. Their lengths can range from a mere one inch (2.5 cm) to 30 inches (76 cm) long.

Others, like the most commonly Veiled Chameleon, can be purple at hatching and then quickly turn green. Some colors reveal their emotional levels, such as stress, sense of temperature change, excitement and to communicate with other chameleons.

Caring for a Chameleon Tips Wild reptiles are more than likely to be infected with parasites . While selecting a pet chameleon, it is important to determine the health of the animal. In a nutshell, chameleons make good pets , but please dont be in a rush to get one before you thoroughly research their care requirements.

They need housing, lighting, heating, specific water needs, food, vet visits. Originally from Nova Scotia, Canada she has lived in the United States for more than 20 years now.

Can You Bond With A Chameleon?

If you are looking for a pet chameleon to bond with – then this is probably not the right pet for you. They require a lot of care – but you will not get the reward of snuggles or admiration from these guys like you would a dog or sometimes a cat (we know they can be loners too!).

What Are Common Types Of Chameleons?

There are several species of chameleons and understanding the differences in each of these species will help you pick the right chameleon for your family! While the information below is general – you will want to do a deeper dive into finding out more about the specific breed you are interested in to ensure you can meet their unique needs.

Veiled Chameleon

The most popular species for those looking to own a chameleon as a pet! The Veiled Chameleon is known for its ability to adapt well to more captive conditions than some of their counterparts. They can also change colors based on their mood or temperature of their enclosure. The beautiful blue and green colors will magically change before your eyes!This species typically live for about 6-8 years as a pet and male veiled chameleons have been known to grow up to a foot long – which is pretty big and will require a larger enclosure!

Senegal Chameleon

These are a more difficult species to keep as a pet due to their high sensitivity to change.They are smaller than the Veiled breed typically only measuring up to 8 inches in length and live no more than 5 years on average.

Jackson’s Chameleon

One of the cooler looking chameleons in our opinion because this one features horns on the males! The breed does not particularly care for being handled and can become stressed if they are so these are a breed that you are better watching than touching.

Panther Chameleon

Last, but certainly not least is the Panther Chameleon which is the brightest colored of the bunch! You can see beautiful colors ranging from green to yellow to orange! The typical length of a male panther chameleon is 12 to 18 inches and 10 to 14 inches for a female panther chameleon.Males can weight about 140-170 grams on average and females from 70-100 grams.Interested in seeing how one of these guys changes colors?This video is an amazing journey watching a panther chameleon change from green to bright yellow – they sped up the video as it does take a while in real life to happen, but the process is amazing![adinserter block=”6″]

FAQ About Chameleons

While each species of chameleon requires variations in their housing and care needs – there are some general concepts that remain the same for all.You may have some trouble finding local stores that offer what your chameleon needs to stay happy and healthy, but Chewy offers a large selection of food and habitat needs to make sure you have one happy pet!

Where Can I Learn More About Chameleons?

Great question! We hope you will take some time to learn more about them before deciding to add one to your family! We also hope you will talk to those that have experience with this species so they can really offer you the best way to bring a chameleon into your home.

Chameleon Forums

Yep – a forum just for chameleon owners and lovers. It is a fairly active forum that covers everything from care to photographing your chameleon. We highly recommend reviewing these forums before making a decision on the breed you want – and if it really is the right pet for your family!

Books

There are a few great books out there to help you learn more about these amazing creatures before you decide to get one to make sure it is right for you!Both of the books below give an overview of the different breeds and general care.Chameleons: Care and Breeding of Jackson’s, Panther, Veiled and Parson’s[adinserter block=”6″]

Can I Rescue A Chameleon?

As with just about any domestic animal – there are opportunities for you to rescue a chameleon as opposed to buying one. Many will recommend buying a captive bred chameleon if you do decide to purchase one, but we always recommend adopting.

All About Chameleons

Chameleons, scientifically called Chamaeleonidae, hail from hot climates from rainforests to deserts. They typically live in tropical climates of Africa, South Europe, Asia, Madagascar, and Hawaii.Chameleons are famous for being able to blend into their environment by morphing the color of their skin. There are several different species—some with brilliant color-changing capabilities and others who have more subtle shades.Most chameleons are relaxed, shy creatures who really like to be alone. Being as isolated as they are, you won’t have to worry about buying a companion, but you will have to respect their boundaries.If the idea of showing off your chameleon excites you—you might want to take note of their personality. Sure, it’s really wonderful to show friends just what your reptile is capable of, but it can also be very stressful for them.Plus, you’ll have to uphold your end of the bargain—sometimes providing expensive food and care. So, what are all the ins and outs you should know?

Chameleons Aren’t Cuddly

If you wanted a chameleon that will hang out on your shirt all day, that isn’t going to happen. Chameleons don’t enjoy being handled. If you hold them too much, it can even have a negative impact on their health.Chameleons can get very sick or irritated by certain perfumes or laundry detergents, so be careful when you touch them with your hands or stick them onto your clothes. Any movements should happen slowly, so you don’t startle them.If you do opt for a chameleon, expect to look but not touch. You won’t want to make it ill with stress, since that can cause a serious health decline. Some lizards can be exceptionally social, like bearded dragons or geckos. But chameleons prefer the quiet quarters of their cage instead.

Chameleons Need Big Enclosures

You won’t have a lack of choices when you pick out your chameleon. They have so many intriguing patterns.When you go to pick out your chameleon, keep these things in mind:Chameleons will vary in appearance and size depending on the type. Some are more vibrant, while others are less flashy. Some are also much easier to care for, while others can create huge responsibilities.Be sure to research your specific type of chameleon when you’re looking to buy. That way, you can create a suitable environment for them.

Chameleons Require Specific Conditions

Chameleons are native to tropical climates where the weather is hot and humid. They need humidity set for at least 65% to 80%. They are comfortable in temperatures between 70 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit. You can buy gauges to monitor temperature and humidity levels in the enclosure.You have to offer water often. They gather most of their hydration by licking droplets from leaves in their cage. You can buy misting systems that go off automatically every few hours, keeping the plants watered and giving moisture to your chameleon.

Chameleons Can Be Very Sensitive

You can’t just feed a chameleon anything—they have pretty strict requirements. Chameleons are considered insectivores, meaning they eat mainly insects. Adults should eat one big meal every other day.When you go to pick out your chameleon, keep these things in mind:Chameleons have lightning-fast tongues, so prepare for quick grabs. Their tongues can be twice the length of their whole body! It’s best to use tongs if you plan to hand-feed your chameleon.Calcium is also a highly necessary mineral in their diet. You’ll need to purchase calcium powder to offer them. Most owners dip gut-loaded insects into the powder to take care of nutritional needs in one swoop.You have to be very careful when you offer calcium powder with added vitamin D3. While this vitamin is essential, they gather most of it through UV light exposure. Too much intake can cause serious complications.Alternatively, not having enough vitamin D3 can create unhealthy bone structure and poor skin health. Make sure lighting, temperature, humidity, and diet correlate with one another.

Not All Chameleons Change Color

You might never see your chameleon at the bottom of their cage—unless something is medically wrong with them. Chameleons love trees, spending most of their time clinging to branches. You have to accommodate their needs by providing (preferably) live plants in their enclosure.When you go to pick out your chameleon, keep these things in mind:Plants and trees add life to your enclosure. Not only are they crucial for the wellbeing of your reptile—they also provide clean air and aesthetic appeal. Since the cage takes up such a large space, it’s an extra perk to make it look natural and eye-catching.

Chameleons Need Vet Care, Too

Don’t mistake it—reptiles need vet care, too. It might be a bit trickier finding an exotic vet who has chameleon medical experience. But before you purchase your chameleon, you’ll want to check out local exotic vets so you can plan for routine care.Regular veterinarians that take care of more common pets like dogs and cats might not have the experience to provide reptile exams. But many vets can refer you to a local place that can. Don’t be afraid to call around to check your options.It would be best if you got your chameleon to the vet of your choice every six to twelve months for necessary checkups. Of course, your chameleon could have minor or major health issues that require more frequent trips. Having a fund set aside for possible emergencies is a smart move—just in case. Exotic vets tend to be a bit pricier than traditional offices.