Iguana Basics FAQ
This FAQ was created to provide a 'quick reference guide' to some of the basics of iguana care. It covers just some of the common questions asked by new iguana owners. It is, however, no substitute for the wonderful resources of the IguanaDen group! If you have questions about anything here in the FAQ or questions that were not covered in the FAQ, please do not hesitate to post your questions to the group.
Special thanks to those at BabyIguana who originally created most of the FAQ questions and answers!
let the pet store tell you that an ig will only grow as big as the cage
it is in!!! That's NOT true!!! Don't waste your money on a
you an idea how fast they grow, an iguana will outgrow a 75 gallon tank
within the first year. That's a very good reason to start with a cage
that is bigger. Its important to remember air circulation and also that
you have to keep the humidity up. Also, that you have to be able
REQUIRE UVB rays for proper digestion and prevention of MBD (Metabolic
Bone Disease), liver or kidney failure. UVB rays are
can get them out in natural sunshine, at least 30 minutes a day (weather
provided) that will take care of the uvb for that day only!! The UVB must
not be any closer than about 8 inches,
HAVE a basking light...they digest their food by the heat.
you must move it, monitor the temps again!!!!!! This cannot be stressed
enough. In order to maintain those temps,
You will need a basking shelf or branch. The placement of this depends on what height you need to maintain the temps mentioned above. Be sure to make it at least twice the width of the ig. Keep in mind the distance the UVB light needs to be from the ig also. This is almost the hardest area of the cage to get correct..it requires a lot of monitoring of the temps until YOU ARE SURE they are correct.
a shallow dish of fresh water for your ig at all times. Some igs will
'poo' in their water dishes, so you may have to change
HAVE humidity. They are of the Tropical Rain Forest. This means you need
a humidity gage. Humidity needs to be high!!!
in the entire
cage need to be varied. The basking area (branch or shelf nearest the
heat source) has already been covered.
OUT!!!!!! If the temps in the cage will fall below 68-70 degrees at night,
you must use supplemental heat. They make bulbs
Iguanas are herbivores... They DO NOT need animal protein, they cannot digest it... it will KILL them!! (Kidney disease) You will find much information on diets on the web. Basically, the diet needs to consist of Collard Greens, mustard greens, turnip greens, dandelion greens, escarole, endive, chicory, (torn in pieces smaller than their head) winter squash (butternut or acorn squash), parsnips (grated or shredded) all placed in a shallow dish. (This is not a complete foods list, but is a good start.)
are 'good' foods and foods for treats (those used only once in awhile).
Fruits are treats..to be given a few times a week. (This doesn't mean
that you cannot give your ig a
I cannot stress enough the importance of diet. NO COMMERCIAL prepared
ig food..no bugs, worms, tuna, chicken, monkey biscuits, dog or cat foods,
eggs, cottage cheese... NO animal protein!!!!!
This is what you use on the floor of your igs enclosure. DO NOT USE anything that is bark, litter,chips...etc...Many are toxic and more so, your ig will ingest these items and it will KILL them. You can use paper bags, newspaper, paper towels, carpeting (washed well first) or towels. (remove all fraying or loose strings)
ROCKS KILL...they can overheat, they cause burns (igs cannot feel the
heat) they will KILL... if you have one and you ig loves it..
Betadine( diluted), triple anti-biotic ointment, and stop-bleed (or cornstarch). From time to time you may need to doctor up something, so keep these items on hand. If you feel you can't treat it, or you don't know what it is..CALL THE VET!!!! Have a VET before you need one in an emergency
This list is by no means complete!!!! You need to do much research and ask many questions about their care. PLEASE!!!!! I cannot stress enough the importance of reading and asking questions. This list is extremely basic.. there is much much more that goes into the care of your iguana.
please do not hesitate to ask any questions on the list. There are no
stupid questions.....the only stupid questions are the ones unasked. We
are all here for our iguanas. We all want them to have the healthiest
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