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The Iguana Den





IMPORTANT: These pages on health are meant to be general guides, not hard and fast rules. They were not written by vets and are NO SUBSTITUTE for veterinary care. If you suspect something is wrong with your iguana, PLEASE see a qualified veterinarian!

When to See the Vet

Iguanas, like other animals, need to see the vet on at least a yearly basis for a health checkup. Reptiles are notorious for hiding signs of illness or injury until they are advanced, so it is important that your vet be familiar with your iguana and be able to spot subtle signs that they may not be well. Any new iguana should go to the vet within a week or two of arriving at their new home for a fecal and bloodwork. We recommend having bloodwork done once a year to catch any early signs of kidney or liver problems, as well as any calcium imbalances. A fecal test should also be done, at least once a year, preferably twice.

Below are some signs that may warrant a trip to the vet's:

Signs of Possible Illness/Injury
If your iguana is eating less...more( variety of things)
Foul smelling stools(parasites,intestinal upset)
No Stools (blockage, dehydration, other problems)
Stools that are looser than normal(parasites,intestinal upsets)
Iguana breaking its normal pottying habits
More wrinkles on his/her body(dehydration)
Loosing balance when climbing (early mbd or other illness,broken bones)

Falling (as above)
Lumps, bumps that are there, or may have changed
Odd behavior(circling,head tilting,awkward movements)these can be signs of brain
Drinking more or less water(illness, gravid, other)
Wanting to lay in cooler or warmer area all the time(varied things)
Laying in water pan all the time(gravid, other)


Straining to go to the bathroom
Uncontrolled bleeding
Distressed breathing
Lethargic / Unresponsive
Cold feeling when they are under their basking area
Anything that you aren't sure is an an emergency!! A call to your Vet can verify if you need to take your iguana in to be seen asap.

Please remember that these are guidelines, not actual veterinary advice. If you suspect there is something wrong with your iguana, please contact your vet right away. Sometimes just a phone call to describe the symptoms will be enough for your vet to let you know if you need to make a visit or not.

Also, please do not put off seeing a vet for money reasons. Most vets will be willing to work with you to arrange payment plans, or to work within your budget. If you put off a vet visit when you first notice symptoms, you may end up with a LARGER vet bill or possibly a dead iguana by the time you finally do see the vet.



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