Swollen casque

Nadya_a16

New Member
I’ve had my veiled chameleon Karma for a little over a year now and I live in Texas we not so long ago had a winter storm with power outages and I had to keep my little guy warm by holding him under my shirt against my skin. His old cage suited him fine until this storm but during the rolling blackouts he was getting so close to the heat lamp he burned the top of his little head and his casque started getting swollen. I’ve since bought him and entirely new cage and moved everything down a bit so he can’t get close to the heat lamp anymore since he’s gotten bigger and I have since taken him to the vet his burn has been treated and healed and the vet suspected a respiratory infection so I had to give my little guy antibiotic shots. He’s finished them and the vet has run blood work and can’t find anything concerning the swollen casque she even tried to get a sample from it and came back with nothing not even air. I’m turning to the forum for any information on what could be wrong with him he’s never had any issues like this before. His poop looks normal and urates are white as normal with the little yellow but at the end as always. I have yet to get plexiglass to surround his new cage to keep the humidity up but he gets misted regularly. There are no live plants in his cage yet since I’m trying to find some organic ones that wouldn’t have any pesticides and he has a drip system to drink from which proves to work since he’s so hydrated. The vet advised I supplement him at every feeding instead of every other feeding to help strengthen his immune system so he gets 6-7 calcium dusted crickets every day. He is still very active and eats and goes potty everyday and still strong and sweet he’s always been a sweet boy since I handle him regularly as long as no one besides myself takes him from the cage and has happy colors. The calcium powder has no D3 to keep him balanced and his light has been tested for UV and is providing enough heat and UV for him. The vet can’t find anything out of the ordinary but will see him again if his condition worsens I’m still just worried about his swelling. I provided a photo I took before his bedtime. If anyone could provide some insight I would be so grateful I have already spent so much money on his new enclosure and frequent vet visits but I’m ready to spend whatever to make sure he’s happy and healthy. :(

0F407CA3-DED4-4635-9DB0-DBFE5B8B4BDC.jpeg
 

nightanole

Chameleon Enthusiast
He has a sinus issue. Next stage the eyes will start swelling. Final stage the jaw will refuse to open.

Id start hunting for a vet that has cured this, and hope it clears up in a few days on its own.
 

CasqueAbove

Chameleon Enthusiast
The cask is fat. he is obese. this is one of the places the store fat. But the first place is internal where it does organ damage and you can't see it. A diet will take care of that.
For the rest I see some issues. Can you fill out this form so we can help. Do not panic he looks good over all and some adjustments and he will feel great.
Oh and you may want to look for a more experienced vet. He did not need the needle in his head.

Here is some recommended information to include when asking for help in the health clinic forum. By providing this information you will receive more accurate and beneficial responses. It might not be necessary to answer all these questions, but the more you provide the better. Please remember that even the most knowledgeable person can only guess at what your problem may be. Only an experienced reptile veterinarian who can directly examine your animal can give a true diagnosis of your chameleon's health.


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nightanole

Chameleon Enthusiast
The cask is fat. he is obese. this is one of the places the store fat. But the first place is internal where it does organ damage and you can't see it. A diet will take care of that.
For the rest I see some issues. Can you fill out this form so we can help. Do not panic he looks good over all and some adjustments and he will feel great.
Oh and you may want to look for a more experienced vet. He did not need the needle in his head.

While just below the skin is fat pads, there is other stuff up there too. My vet drained a good amount of clear fluid, to the point it looks concave again. It just filled back up with fluid within an hour.

In my case it was a drainage issue. the casque swelled, then the eyes got puffy, then the jaw would not open all the way.

Veiled_chameleon_skulls.jpg
 

CasqueAbove

Chameleon Enthusiast
While just below the skin is fat pads, there is other stuff up there too. My vet drained a good amount of clear fluid, to the point it looks concave again. It just filled back up with fluid within an hour.

In my case it was a drainage issue. the casque swelled, then the eyes got puffy, then the jaw would not open all the way.

View attachment 299051

There is more than one reason of course. They tested with a needle and got nothing so I say probably fat.
The main thing is an experienced vet should have an idea just by feeling it. or seeing other signs. I see your point about there being a sinus infection that did not get cured. Without us being there a could vet is only way to tell.
I would bet having experienced it you could tell the difference with hands on.
 

nightanole

Chameleon Enthusiast
There is more than one reason of course. They tested with a needle and got nothing so I say probably fat.
The main thing is an experienced vet should have an idea just by feeling it. or seeing other signs. I see your point about there being a sinus infection that did not get cured. Without us being there a could vet is only way to tell.
I would bet having experienced it you could tell the difference with hands on.

Yea, in my case it literally felt like a 2nd degree burn bubble, and you could move it around and stuff.
 

CasqueAbove

Chameleon Enthusiast
Is everyone sure there is fat stored in the casque?
Not 100%. I have heard other thigs as well. I believe it is one reason and the most common. I assume there is nothing critical by the fact that they can burn it completely off with no ill signs.
 

nightanole

Chameleon Enthusiast
Is everyone sure there is fat stored in the casque?

Yup. Its not "full of fat" but there are two fat stores just under the skin, just like a panther. And we also know there is a "fan" muscle up there. Not sure what is in the center, is it a sinus, fluid, or what. I dont think its completely solid, else it wouldnt need a bone, and it would be a very heavy hood ornament :p
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Queen
Not 100%. I have heard other thigs as well. I believe it is one reason and the most common. I assume there is nothing critical by the fact that they can burn it completely off with no ill signs.
Petr Necas said..."The casque itself is made of muscle and fat and supported by bone." Previous to that he had said it was muscle but then he said... "I did more investigations and what seemed to be fat is in fact edematic swelling of the muscle, nomdat present" in a thread titled "Purpose of the casque".

Chris Anderson said..."The structure of the casque is made up of bone and the space between the bones is filled primarily with jaw adductor muscles (the muscles responsible for closing the mouth and bite force). The casque thus creates an increased surface for jaw adductor muscles to attach and an increased space to store the bodies of these muscles. As a result, the enlarged casque serves not only a sexual selection and species recognition function, but also serves to increase the force they are able to bite with. Chamaeleo calyptratus thus have a disproportionately high bite force for their body size when compared to other chameleons"...
https://www.chameleonforums.com/threads/chameleon-bite-power.136710/#post-1175788
 

CasqueAbove

Chameleon Enthusiast
Petr Necas said..."The casque itself is made of muscle and fat and supported by bone." Previous to that he had said it was muscle but then he said... "I did more investigations and what seemed to be fat is in fact edematic swelling of the muscle, nomdat present" in a thread titled "Purpose of the casque".

Chris Anderson said..."The structure of the casque is made up of bone and the space between the bones is filled primarily with jaw adductor muscles (the muscles responsible for closing the mouth and bite force). The casque thus creates an increased surface for jaw adductor muscles to attach and an increased space to store the bodies of these muscles. As a result, the enlarged casque serves not only a sexual selection and species recognition function, but also serves to increase the force they are able to bite with. Chamaeleo calyptratus thus have a disproportionately high bite force for their body size when compared to other chameleons"...
https://www.chameleonforums.com/threads/chameleon-bite-power.136710/#post-1175788

I know the muscle theory and clearly there is some accuracy to it. However I have always wondered about Veils loosing their casks. I does not seem to affect them at least not that I have heard of. I do believe there is mussel but it , at least in the upper part of the cask, can not be a primary force. Wouldn't we see weakened jaws in severe cask burns, and refusal to open jaws when burn is new.
This is why I believe that what ever it is it is superficial. I do believe it is just a display or show for some reason and serves no real purpose. This has been what I have gathered through research.
That said it must have something there. We know of the bone. The rest is going to be a combo of muscle tissue and fat. I would bet if you could see it it is like marbled beef. The ratio of fat to muscle would be dependent on the life of the animal. This is my theory on it not fact. Just what I piece together from what I find.
 

kinyonga

Chameleon Queen
You said..."Wouldn't we see weakened jaws in severe cask burns, and refusal to open jaws when burn is new"...I would have thought that could be a possibility. I'm trying to find the necropsy that shows the fat deposits in the body and casque where it's said to be muscle but all I can find is that one that talks about the fat...

We need to stop hijacking the thread. My apologies @Nadya_a16
 
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jannb

Chameleon Enthusiast
I live in Lewisville, Texas Ive been taking him to Texas Avian and Exotic

Are you seeing Dr. Thielen? She is on a TV show there and should be good.

Dr. Greg Moore DMV is Lao suppose to be good.

817-481-2014
200 W State Hwy 114, Southlake TX 76092
 

Nadya_a16

New Member
Are you seeing Dr. Thielen? She is on a TV show there and should be good.

Dr. Greg Moore DMV is Lao suppose to be good.

817-481-2014
200 W State Hwy 114, Southlake TX 76092
I’m with Dr. Antinoff at Texas Avian and Exotic I will try Dr. Greg Moore :) I’ve read some... disturbing reviews about Dr. Thielen and honestly I’m quite frightened.
 
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