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Anna, Reptile Expert, Biologist
Category: Reptile
Satisfied Customers: 11513
Experience:  Have owned turtles, snakes, amphibians, and lizards. Study and provide habitat for wild herps.
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I have a veiled chameleon that has these raised bumps under

Customer Question

Hi there. I have a veiled chameleon that has these raised bumps under the skin. It started out with 1 very small, now he has 2 and they've gotten bigger over the last few months. It seems almost pimple like. I just don't know what it could possibly be or where to go from here because I can't get a clear answer. He's 2 years old and we feed him crickets and try to hydrate him as much as possible. His cage is all screens and he has plenty of room. Theres been no behavior or physical changes since we started noticing these lumps. It's not burns because he's atleast 6-12 inches away from the bulb when he's basking. I'm not sure what kind of uv bulb we have right now or how often were suppose to replace it either. Can I attach pictures of you need?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Reptile
Expert:  Anna replied 1 year ago.

Hello and welcome. Thank you for requesting me. I appreciate like give for the delay. I was not online at the time you posted your question, and am not sure why I was being shown as online. Your pictures would be very useful. You can upload photos by clicked no on the paper clip icon in the toolbar at the top of the space where you type. Instructions will pop up. Thank you. Anna

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thanks! Ok I attached photos of 3 of them including the 2 biggest ones and he has a couple other really small ones that are hard to get photos of.
Expert:  Anna replied 1 year ago.

Thank you. I'll look at them and get back to you shortly.

Expert:  Anna replied 1 year ago.

One question: do you ever leave live crickets in the enclosures?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Yeah sometimes we do. That was one of the possibilities I was also thinking was if they're biting him. But why would those bumps stay for so long if it is a cricket bite?
Expert:  Anna replied 1 year ago.

They can get infection in them. The best maps do look like cricket bites. In reptiles, pus tends to harden and results in hard little lumps. That is definitely one possibility. Another is that there is a virus present - similar to the one that causes warts in humans. If that's what it is, there is no treatment for it. Cricket bites that get infected can eventually spread through the body causing illness. You'll have to make a decision. If your chameleon is active and eating well, you can take a wait and see approach. I would be sure to not leave any crickets in the cage. If new lumps appear when no crickets are there, you're probably dealing with a virus. If no new ones show up, cricket bites may well be responsible. The other option is to see a reptile vet to get a definite answer without waiting. The vet will be able to palpate the lumps and perhaps take a fine needle aspirate to see if pus is present. I do n't think anything life threatening is going on right now, but you may want to see a vet for your own peace of mind. Otherwise, continue to monitor the situation and remove any other neaten crickets after ten minutes. If you have more questions, let me know in a REPLY. I hope this will turn out to be nothing. Anna

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
thanks for the answer! Do you think it's normal for those bumps to be there for several months and only get a little bigger if it is just cricket bites? You would think if it's an infection that it would spread or cause harm way faster, but I don't know exactly how those kinds of things act in reptile bodies.
Expert:  Anna replied 1 year ago.

You're welcome. Most of the time, cricket bites do result in infection more quickly, but there are no guarantees of that. When dealing with living creatures, anything can happen. Honestly, nobody knows exactly how things work in reptile bodies. However, I am leaning toward the virus option. If that's what it is, and they stay small, you can let it run its course. They may stay the same or even disappear. Sometimes, though, they get much bigger or more numerous tot he point where they can interfere with shedding. In that case, a vet may need to surgically remove them.

Let me know if you need anything else.


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