To Purchase Your
Chameleons find their way to your local pet stores through various paths.
Even though pet stores may display the animals in attractive settings,
you must not only closely examine your potential chameleon physically,
but you should inquire as to where it came from.
you not only
have the RIGHT, but you have an OBLIGATION to ask where your new chameleon
came from! Don't support pet stores that do not take care of their animals
or do not deal with reputable sources. Keep in mind that few stores
use only one source and they usually combine good and bad methods of
- Professional breeder
In my opinion, this is
the optimal source to acquire your chameleon. Professional breeders
can be found at reptile shows, contacted directly, as well as supply
large pet store chains. Connie, who owns "Arboreal Exotics"
in Waterdown is an example of an excellent breeder who I have had
the pleasure of meeting, who supplies many chameleons to large stores,
as well as selling privately and exporting Internationally. If you
are interested in purchasing a chameleon from Connie please call
her at (905) 689-2916.
Adopt from an organization
that works with people who no longer want their reptiles. Many reptiles
are dropped off at local pet stores, by owners who are tired of
them, hoping to make some money off them, or who want to trade them
in for something more novel, or because they have no where else
to drop it off! Although some of these reptiles may be healthy,
usually they have been neglected, hence they are no longer wanted
and find their way back to the pet stores. You will also be unaware
of any health complications or behavioral traits. I see countless
chameleon with severe MBD (calcium deficiency) dropped off at pet
stores, where the managers try to resell them for $150 and up! If
that was not irresponsible enough (selling a sick animal) some actually
take them home to breed them. I would recommend offering to adopt
an animal in this state, but would not offer to purchase it. It
will simply add momentum to a market that supports this kind of
behavior. For more information about adoption please contact Reptile
Rescue or the Chameleon Enthusiast.
- People who breed their
chameleons with no knowledge
People often breed their
own pet chameleons for "fun" or to try to make a few fast
bucks off them or it happens by accident!. Generally speaking, they
have no idea of how to care for chameleons and are not conscientious
of bloodlines. Most pet stores will readily offer to purchase reptiles
from ANYONE, which is a practice which perpetuates breeding chameleon
for "sport" and "quick cash".
- Wild caught
Most wild caught chameleons
are illegal. Professional breeders sometimes have to use them to
"freshen up" their blood lines, however, we are now cultivating
a large enough supply of captive bred chameleons to prevent this
practice (except with the more exotic species). Imagine the stress
a chameleon would go through being captured and transported out
of its natural environment. Only a professional should even deal
with a wild caught chameleon, as they must be treated for parasites
and various diseases.