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Iguana Care Sheet
So you're thinking of buying a pet lizard, and that pet lizard happens to be an iguana. Think long and hard about this decision. You might be crazy!

Even though they can be wonderful and tame pet lizards, a lot of work goes into producing such a pet. You don't want an iguana bite from a giant green iguana. They can remove digits from children. Their force is nothing to consider lightly. The owner of this store was nearly killed by an Iguana. The medical cost of the injury was 20K. Iguanas are the most popular Lizard sold in a pet store. It is also the largest adopted pet in America. Over 10,000 are up for adoption a year in America. Suffice it to say, this lizard is probably not the best beginner pet lizard. Hopefully the iguana facts on this page will help. If you want one please look into adoption.

Cage One reason a pet iguana can be a challenging lizard is the fact that they can grow between 4 and 6 feet long. In addition to this length they like to climb and actually prefer to hang out high up in the trees. A minimum 12' x 8' (height and width) with a minimum of 4 feet in depth is needed to maintain a happy healthy igy. This will cost you hundreds of dollars. Some people dedicate one room of their house, like a spare bedroom, in providing an iguana habitat. They need their cage misted at least once a day -preferably twice, this is done to maintain the near 85% humidity level that is needed. Because they like to climb, branches or something similar should be provided. As far as substrate -newspaper paper towels or reptile carpet should work fine.
Lighting Iguanas need a UVB light. This type of light provides your pet iguana with simulated sunlight. Without this, they cannot control the absorption of vitamin D. You also need to provide a heat lamp. An iguana needs a body temperature of around 85 to be able to digest its food. A mercury vapor bulb provides the necessary UVB light, in addition to providing heat. It's also considerably more expensive. Predict to spend about $150 on bulbs alone a year and about $500 a year in electricity.
They need a basking spot (hottest spot in cage) of around 95. You need to have the light(s) on a timer, so you don't have to either remember, or wake up at a certain time like 6 a.m. They need around 12 hours of light to simulate their natural iguana habitat. Never use a heat rock with an iguana, they have been known to cause burns in many different pet lizards. Take these iguana facts to heart as they might save your pet from injury. You need to create a temperature gradient with all pet lizards. This allows them to heat up or cool down depending on where they are in their cage.
Food Iguanas are vegetarians. All studies show that a strictly vegetarian diet produces the healthiest, happiest and longest lived pet iguana. At least 50% of an iguana's diet should be made up of a variety of dark leafy greens(so should yours!-human). Greens such as mustard greens, dandelion greens, parsley, collard greens and turnip greens. 30 to 40% of their diet can be made up of other vegetables such as bell peppers, green beans, butternut and a yellow squashes (cooked and then allowed to cool), zucchini and asparagus. Other foods such as fruits can make up five to 10% of the diet of a pet iguana. Fruits such as tomatoes (yes that's a fruit) apples, pears and berries. The cost of feeding an adult Iguana is about $12 a day or $4380.00 a year!
Water Water needs to be provided in your iguana habitat. The water dish needs to be changed and cleaned daily. If he fits in it, he is happy! The do like to soak.
Closing If you're serious about acquiring a pet iguana then you need to do much more research in the form of multiple different care sheets and reading a book or two on this wonderful pet lizard. PLEASE do NOT let children play with the iguana unattended. If you buy it keep it! The above iguana facts should help you in deciding if this lizard is right for you.
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