A pet iguana has become popular since the last decade for a good reason – they’re an awesome pet to have. Your other pet lover friends would certainly envy you if you own a colorful, exotic pet iguana. However, like other exotic pets, iguanas need certain care and maintenance that can be time-consuming and costly. Make sure you know what you’re getting before taking home a lizard for a pet.
Why Pet Iguana
For hard core pet lovers, there’s some prestige and pride in owning exotic pets like an iguana. Exotic pets, especially one with long claws and not-so-commendable personality, are a challenge to take care of; only extreme and hard core animal lovers would dare have iguanas as pets. Once you get things down with iguanas though, they can be entertaining to observe and have in the house for show and tell.
How to Choose a Pet Iguana
If you think you’re ready for a pet iguana, you must know how to choose one to get what you’re expecting of. The first thing that iguana lovers are looking for when shopping for an iguana is the lizard’s color patterns. For this, green iguanas are the favorite. But there are other stunning iguana color patterns like the blue iguana with orange back spikes and tail and many other color patterns too. Health is the second consideration when choosing a pet iguana. The eyes have to look clear and the skin must not be flaky or missing some scales – worse if the iguana is missing some back spikes. And lastly, get an active iguana who likes to explore your hands and climb up your back when handled. At least you get some interaction from an otherwise very lazy pet.
Pet Iguana Temperament
Pet iguanas are notorious for being ill tempered – so make sure you’re ready to receive few tail blows or claw scratches if the iguana is feeling baddy. Especially as your iguana gets older, there’s some tendency that it’ll slowly going to become little Godzilla. That’s why you need to be equipped with leather gloves that run up your shoulder when handling an iguana – and you should never let young children handle an iguana alone. Iguanas tend to be gentle to people that are constantly around them, however. So make sure you give them plenty of handling and association in your free time.
Pet Iguana Diet
A lot of pet iguanas end in vets’ office due to malnourishment. Remember that your pet iguana came from the tropics and only eat fresh green vegetables and some fruits. There’s not much calcium and protein in these food items, so you need to inject them in your pet iguana’s diet by adding in calcium supplement and protein-rich green veggies like green beans and dandelion greens.
Pet Iguana Pen
Since your pet iguana came from hot, humid climate in the tropics, you need to replicate its natural surroundings in its pen. You need the right heat lamp because iguanas like to bask under the heat to digest their food and promote metabolism. The lamp should produce anywhere from 85 to 100 degrees Fahrenheit for your iguanas to be happy and healthy. They love to climb on logs or rocks to bask, so its pen must be large enough to accommodate a tree trunk or a big stone.
Pet Iguana Care
The care of pet iguanas boils down to three important things: diet, shelter, and association. You have to give proper diet to your iguanas to promote healthy skin coloration and texture and to avoid common iguana health problems such as bone degeneration. Its shelter should mimic its natural habitat in the tropics; that is to say it has to be warm and has plenty of hideouts in case the lizard is feeling shy. Lastly, you must give your iguana enough association to prevent reverting its attitude to wild iguanas. Although enough association won’t prevent your iguana from behaving bad once in a while, it’s going to limit it.
These are the things you can expect if you decide to have a pet iguana. So make sure you’re up for the challenge because iguanas are not for everybody, really.