Why Won’t My Chameleon Eat – 5 Reasons You Should Need to Know

Why Won’t My Chameleon Eat - 5 Reasons You Should Need to Know

Has your chameleon recently been not eating anything? Are you worried about this affecting their health as they starve themselves to falling extremely weak and acquiring terrible diseases?

Why won’t my chameleon eat? That question may often come to the mind of a chameleon handler as they might eventually encounter this sort of behavior from their chameleon.

As chameleons are complex reptiles, it is essential to know the environment they prefer and the best diet for them. Just keep reading below for more!

Why is My Chameleon Not Eating

Why won’t my chameleon eat? Why is he refusing to eat anything? Chameleons are generally not heavy eaters, as Chameleons generally can thrive on water alone for up to a week alone.

The problem that might arise is when your chameleon still doesn’t eat after more than a week; some of the reasons listed below can affect a chameleon’s appetite:

Your Chameleon Is Shedding Her Skin

If you have a young chameleon that is currently growing up, it will shed their skins more than usual and, therefore, may have a reduced appetite and eat less; in this case, not eating for a week would be a regular thing for the chameleon, there is nothing to be alarmed for in this case.

Your Chameleon Might Be in Stress

Stress is one of my main reason. Why won’t my chameleon eat? Stress can be a daunting problem for a chameleon, as too much stress can even prove to be fatal for them. In times of stress, a chameleon may display symptoms such as aggressive behavior, reduction in appetite, and hiding from the owner.

Your Chameleon Getting Aged

Getting aged is one of the main reasons Why I won’t my chameleon eat. If your chameleon is getting older, it might need to eat less as they advance into its final stages; an average chameleon’s age is between 2-7 years, which, keeping in mind, its diet should be adjusted accordingly.

Check this article to learn How to Tell if a Chameleon is Dying, Learn if Your Chameleon is Sick. 

Your Chameleon Need Mating

Like it or not, every animal, whether biped or not, will express a desire to mate and reproduce at one point. This goes for reptiles too. A chameleon will often put food on the afterburner as they look for a female companion to mate with while fighting off other male competitors who are also looking for the same.

If you do not intend to breed chameleons, then it would be a good idea to keep the female and male chameleons away from each other in the same house. To make them happy and avoid worrying about Why won’t my chameleon eat.

Your Chameleon Might Be in Pain

A chameleon will also refuse to eat food if they are in pain; it could result from impaction (undigested food or a foreign object in the digestive system) or even MBD (Metabolic Bone Disease).

Parasites might also have infested your chameleon body; this can stem from being fed earthworms or any worm that is mainly wild and is not cleaned.

In this case, it would be a good idea to get your chameleon checked by an animal vet before taking further action. Make sure to consult your Vet if you think Why won’t my chameleon eat.

Besides these, you may also check whether the food you are serving them is up to their satisfaction or if the environment the chameleon is in might just be making them rather restless.

Check this article to learn What Chameleons Eat. List of Worms, Insects, and Fruits

Why won’t my chameleon eat? There might be some underlying issue, which would be essential to get your chameleon checked by an animal vet.

Will a Chameleon Starve Itself?

Why won’t my Chameleon eat, and will it starve itself? Due to their defensive and slightly predatory nature, Chameleons will try to keep whatever sort of pain or hunger they are experiencing to themselves.

This sort of behavior can especially come into effect if a chameleon is not served their usual food, is feeling ill, or is shedding skin; a chameleon can indeed potentially starve itself till they are unable to eat by itself, which may result in the chameleon handler force-feeding the Chameleon to keep them going.

Check this article to know How Long Can Chameleons Go Without food and water.

The one thing that is important to look for when “Why won’t my chameleon eat” is to make sure why your Chameleon is starving itself. What is the reason and why they are doing so? There might be a reason for this unhealthy behavior, as starvation may eventually result in the development of Metabolic Bone Disease.

How Do You Force Feed a Chameleon?

Force-feeding, in general, should be a last resort as a chameleon or any animal will experience immense stress due to the effort of force-feeding them.

The most recommended method for force-feeding chameleons if they refuse to eat anything is to use a syringe to try and gently squirt them with a vitamin supplement.

Or, in worse cases, pick and open their mouth to squirt the fluids from the syringe inside or feed them a worm such as a mealworm; you may do this by gently holding them from behind their jaws and making them open their mouth.

You think, why won’t my chameleon eat? It is important to note that this may not always work and may cause your chameleon a lot of stress along with a potential for damaging their body; hence it is recommended to get them checked up by an animal vet before doing this.

Otherwise, you may also try the ‘shower’ method, which is essentially getting in a shower with your chameleon, putting a fake or real plant in such a way that the showerhead water bounces off the plant to the wall, releasing amounts of mists which may rehydrate a dehydrated and starved chameleon. Do worry too much during that time. Why won’t my chameleon eat?


Why won’t my chameleon eat? There can be several reasons for a chameleon not eating food, such as getting served the same thing and getting fed up with it or not receiving their favorite food. Still, it would help if you got your chameleon checked by a vet for any more profound underlying medical condition in case your chameleon refuses to eat for weeks.

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