Iguanas are one of the most popular type of lizard kept as house pets. However, despite being popular they are one of the most difficult kinds of lizards to take care of and most people who choose to keep iguanas as pets are not aware of how difficult it is to maintain them. That’s why most if not all end up having stunted growth due to unhealthy diets and restricted habitats. If you’re a beginner and are looking into iguanas as pets then here’s a couple of things you need to know.
They grow big
Most important thing to know about iguanas is that they grow up to 17 pounds in weight and up to six feet long! Younger iguanas can be smaller so new owners tend to put them in habitats that are enough for that size not knowing that they can grow a lot bigger in a few years. Commercially available habitats often sold in pet shops will become useless after a few years because iguanas will outgrow them. It is recommended that you go for custom habitats instead.
With bigger habitats you need to provide more light, iguanas like to bask in the heat so temperatures inside its habitat should never go below 75 degree Fahrenheit. Provide heat lamps and UVB bulbs as well as branches, iguanas are tree-dwelling and likes to perch on trees to bask in the light, the heat allows them to generate vitamin D to help them digest their food better.
They have a third eye
It might not be apparent at first glance but if you look closely just right above their heads, what looks like a small pale scale is actually an iguana’s third eye. This third eye also known as the parietal eye can sense movement as well as light but it cannot discern shapes and colors. In the wild, the third eye helps them spot attacks from birds flying above them. The scariest predator for iguanas are hawks, if iguanas hear a hawk’s cry nearby they tend to freeze and are unable to move.
They are social
Iguanas are social creatures, they prefer to live and eat together so buying more iguanas and keeping them together could be better for their health and growth however, iguanas are very dangerous when provoked they have very sharp teeth and can definitely pierce through human skin, they also have salmonella in their stomachs which does not affect the animal but can be very dangerous for humans. To avoid harmful situations, a big enclosure would be necessary to keep iguanas live happily together and proper handling is also advised as well as regular hygienic practices when socializing with iguanas.
Iguanas are categorized as omnivores because they eat plants as well as insects but more studies are showing that it is healthier to feed iguanas fresh leaves instead of insects. If handled properly, iguanas can live for as long as 20 years.
Do you want to get an iguana? Download the YepiPet app! It is important to keep track of their health by keeping well maintained habitats, a balanced diet and a constant eye on their daily activities. These tasks are difficult to handle alone but it is definitely easier with YepiPet. YepiPet is now equipped with multi-species care and can help you keep your iguanas happy and healthy, because iguanas can be good pets but they require meticulous care. YepiPet is available for download on iOS and Android.