ON BUYING A NEW IGUANA


La version franšaise de cette page se trouve: http://www.iguana.infos.org/IC/ic-buy_ig-fr.html

My standard letter to people about to buy an iguana is at http://www.geeky-boy.com/ig_letter.txt. This page is a short and sweet summary.

The short answer is that most people probably shouldn't get an iguana, ESPECIALLY if a child is supposed to be the primary care giver.

If you're still leaning toward getting an iguana, check out Melissa Kaplan's short summary of requirements: http://www.anapsid.org/part1.html#summary Also, take a look at a Chicago Tribune article: http://chicagotribune.com/splash/article/0,1051,SAV-9808260270,00.html (there are a few inaccuracies, but most of it is on target).

For another perspective, see Melissa Kaplan's page, "So, you think you want a reptile?". To be honest, I think she goes overboard with the negativity; she wants to discourage people from buying iguanas as much as possible. I don't mind people getting them, so long as they know what they're getting into. Anyway, after her tirade, she gives a list of good "starter" reptiles that are MUCH easier to care for than iguanas. I'm told that "corn snakes" and "bearded dragons" are great.

In an ideal world, every pet owner would become knowledgable about their animals before they got them. Before buying, check out my iguana blurb for new iguana owners: http://www.geeky-boy.com/iguana_blurb.html and be sure to follow the links to Jennifer's and Melissa's pages.


If I sound negative, please understand that I love my iguana. Even knowing what I know now, I would still have gotten him. But I also see scores of iguanas per month being given away in rec.pets.herp from people who can no longer take care of them. And that's just the NET-connected people; there are hundreds of others that get dumped. It's estimated that 90% of reptiles die in their first year of captivity due to people not knowing what they're getting into and not being able to afford the upkeep and vet care.