First Impressions on Green Iguanas as Pets


– So I really never wear
gloves while handling reptiles, but my hands are so perfect right now. There’s like, no cuts. They’re just smooth
and don’t cause me pain every time I touch something, so I’m gonna keep it that way. They’re really not comfortable. And it’s gonna be really hard to grab it. But I like my clean hands. Hello. How are you? She’s a little rambunctious. Hello. Oh, my god. Okay, welcome to first
impressions on green iguanas. This is a series I used to do where I would basically
tell you about an animal that I’ve only had for a few months, and what my first few
months has been like. So here’s the newest installment. I guess this works. It’s not what I had planned,
but this is a green iguana that we have had for either, we got it either late 2018 or early 2019. Given to us by somebody
that watches the channel. They were not the primary care,
or the original caretakers. They got the iguana from someone else that was basically
abusing or neglecting it. They fixed him up quite well. He still wasn’t quite there, so we’re kind of doing
the last little bit. And then we’ll rehome
him to the final home. So we’re kind of the third home. And then he’ll have a fourth home. Some people don’t like the idea of that. They say that we should
keep him permanently since he’s been around to
so many places already, and it’ll be a bit more stressful. But for one, I shouldn’t keep an animal that I’m not actually really
interested in keeping myself, which kind of gives you an idea of maybe what my first impressions have been like. But there’s a lot of
details that I’ll go into. But it also takes up a ton
of space and resources. This is a pretty large enclosure. And he’s still a very small animal. He’s gonna need something
way bigger than this. He also consumes a lot of
food and a lot of time. So if we had unlimited space, I would love to keep him around. But because we can use this space for… Just this spot could have
a shelf with, I don’t know, 10 more geckos or something
that we could help out. So we wanna kind of keep things moving. Again, if I was really interested in him, I could get him for myself. But it’s not something I
plan on doing at this time. So why is that, and what’s
the experience been like? Well, right off the bat, as you saw, I had some trouble getting
him out of the enclosure. I’m not the only one that does that. It happens a lot. He’s hard to deal with. – He just takes to it in no time. Oh, god. – And admittedly, I have
not handled him recently. So I’m sure that made it
more uncomfortable for him since he wasn’t used to
it these past few weeks. So for those of you that don’t know, green iguanas are a species
that are very readily available. I just went to Petco because
I was out of insects, and it would take too
long to order then online. And they have green iguanas there now. It’s their new animal. $60 for a baby iguana. There were like a dozen of
them in a little enclosure. Right next to the leopard geckos and all the other little easy animals. So although, of course, people
should do their own research, a lot of people just read that label on the thing and that’s their
care for the next 30 years. Anyway, that’s not really related. So my experiences with this animal. As expected, green iguanas
are not super simple. They’re not the most tame,
just right off the bat. They love you. No, they’re not like, and
a simple little ball python or leopard gecko that might
take a few weeks to adjust. Now, some things that I adore about him. This was my very first impression,
which was a good thing. He doesn’t poop or pee on you. That is like, the worst defense mech… Well, worst for me, best defense mechanism for any animal in my room. Because I don’t like
being pooped or peed on. Maybe you can relate, I don’t know. But he doesn’t. He poops a lot. You see his bowl right
now, is like, brown. Because you have to change it out daily because he poops so much. But he doesn’t do it on
you and it’s so nice. So if he wanted to,
hopefully he’s not listening. I don’t think he understands me. If he pooped on me, I
would not be handling him as comfortably as I am or
letting him in my nest of a head. But because he’s not a Savannah monitor, he doesn’t do that. He just tail whips and
scratches and hisses. He doesn’t even bite, actually. Green iguanas get super big. Including their tail, they
can get like 6-plus feet as adults and they grow pretty quickly. He was underweight when I got him. He’s still underweight
and he eats so much food. He is always consuming food. I learned it’s a bit harder
to get weight up on an animal that is completely herbivorous because… Say a leopard gecko, we have
some underweight leopard geckos right now that we got in. They’re very easy to deal with. Usually we feed them dubia roaches. Or just give ’em some
superworms and wax worms and horn worms or whatever else and they gain weight super fast. You just mix those in with the dubias, their tail gets thicker, and then you’re good to go. Just wax them, wane them off? Wax them off, and then
slowly take them off of those fatter insects
and then they’re all good. Iguanas on the other
hand, it’s not as easy. Because although there are
things with more calories, like fruit or whatever,
you don’t wanna just completely sugar them up
and give them diabetes. But thankfully, he’s on his way. And hopefully he’ll be
available very soon. Just rip the BAND-AID
off, get it over with, get him to that next
home that can actually really work with him
super close, one on one and get him used to them. Because unfortunately, based
on what I’ve been told, even if an iguana gets used to you, it doesn’t mean they’re used to people. Because they know who you are. So, yeah, attitude wise, he’s pretty much fine in the room now. He doesn’t freak out
every time you walk in. I honestly don’t even
remember he’s in here because he’s just so quiet now. Because he used to, when you come in, he would be hissing and
jumping and freaking out. But now it’s chill, which is nice to see. Until you open it up
and wanna work with him. But even then, just
putting food in his bowl, he’ll kind of go to the
back of the enclosure. Maybe jump around a bit. And then once it’s
closed, he’ll start eating after a few minutes, no problem. And like I said, once he’s out… He’s not happy right now,
but he’s not freaking out. He’s not running away. He just kind of keeps his place and fights you if he needs to. Which is purely defense, because I’m the one who
took him out of his home. A bit about the enclosure in between. Like I said, it’s pretty big. This is like a ferret
enclosure or something. I think it’s made for small mammals. It’s been working, overall. But humidity is just crazy. There’s plastic all over it right now. It’s just like floor plastic, like while you’re painting or whatever. That was an attempt to
keep more humidity in. It’s not really working. It still gets sprayed all the time, like multiple times a day. If you saw that reptile ASMR,
you got an idea about that. And it still just dries out so fast. And this is a pretty humid room. There’s a huge bowl in there. He’s got his leg in everything. It’s all covered in plastic, but that moisture just does not stay in. So that’s been the biggest difficulty. Other than that, everything’s
been going well with him. Or going consistent with him. So their intelligence is definitely at a whole ‘nother level. Because generally you think of reptiles as not the smartest animals on earth. Please see ranking my
lizards smartest to dumbest. That’ll prove that. But the iguana’s definitely up there. He is crazy aware. He knows what’s going on. He knows really how to
communicate with you. Get across what he wants. He probably thinks I’m the stupid one because I’m not getting what he’s saying. Well, most of the time I am getting it, I just have to ignore it because we have to work with him anyway. Like if he starts hissing or
tail whipping or backing away, he’s like, Just stop and
I’ll stop tail whipping you. But I can’t stop because
I gotta get my work done. His claws are, by far,
the strongest in the room. Thankfully, I have not
felt a bite from him. A bite from an adult iguana can take your thumb off or whatever. A bite from him would
probably tear pretty well but nothing that would
need medical assistance. I don’t think. But either way, he does not try to bite. He just scratches, which isn’t
even a defense mechanism. It’s just him climbing. Because five minutes of handling, like I said I’m wearing gloves this time, but five minutes of handling, usually your hands just look crazy, like you went through a
briar patch or something. And it feels pretty good on
my head, I’m not gonna lie. It’s kind of like a head
scratch, just a little sharper. It’s like acupuncture in my scalp. So the future for this guy
would be pretty interesting. I’m trying to think what
my impressions would be if he stayed like this the entire time. Like he stayed this size, basically. And that would be pretty different. I still wouldn’t be too keen on keeping this one myself right now, it’s just not in the right place or time. I don’t have enough passion
about iguanas at the moment. But if he were like beardy size forever, it would be a little different. Just knowing what he’s
going to become is crazy. And that’s one of the
reason it’s important to stay consistent with working with them because if you slip up and
start forgetting like I have, they’re gonna be seven feet and they’re gonna wanna kill you. If you don’t take advantage
of every moment you can to really work with them,
you’re probably gonna regret it. So that’s why we’re trying to
work quickly with this dude without just completely power feeding and voring him to the point of exploding. Do I regret at all taking this animal? Well, no because we’re helping it. But what if I had bought this for myself and I was keeping him full time. I think that would be
super exciting in a way knowing that you’ll get
to grow up together. And see him change, and
he’ll really get used to you if worked with properly and
if he’s works back with you because it’s more of a
mutual thing with iguanas. Like a lot of common, just
easier lizards or animals, it’s all up to you. But it’s a little bit up to him when it comes to actually
forming a relationship with the animal. So year, diet wise,
it’s been an easy diet. Just lots of different types of fruits and veggies and greens. It’s definitely a lot
of it, but he loves it. Thankfully he’s a very easy eater. It would be crazy if he wouldn’t eat well, and you had to assist
feed him or something. That would not be fun. So green iguanas are pretty crazy species when it comes to size and
care and attitude and color. Like, it’s a crazy color,
it’s so bright green. And it’s a really cool looking animal. But there’s certainly a lot
that comes along with it. It’s kind of just all the hard
things about reptile keeping that people don’t really
expect when getting into it. So I can’t imagine what
keeping an adult iguana all by myself would be like right now. If he had the attitude
of this little thing, which is why I’m very glad
that he is not that big. There’s a lot on the line for his future and how he is cared for
up until this point. Super glad that we got
this experience with him. And we’re gonna continue
having this experience up until he’s at his final home. So, yeah, I was really
excited when we got him. But I was excited for the fact that he was going to be more difficult. So he is pretty much what I expected because I’ve learned
about them a good bit. But now that he’s here, I’m still glad we got this experience. And I don’t regret taking
him in or anything. First impressions are,
yeah, they live up to their name of what green
iguanas are known for, being difficult and potentially
dangerous as they grow. And fast growing,
because he’s grown a lot. Definitely some unique
things that stand out that I didn’t expect. Like the fact that they don’t poop on you. And they really don’t lash
out and bite if they’re angry or whatever, at least this individual. Of course, it’s all gonna be different. Don’t take this guy as an
example for the whole species. But that’s another one of the cool things is that they are so
individualized between them. Because, I don’t know, every corn snake, you can pretty much
predict the personality. Maybe a little nippy as babies. And then pretty chill as
adults if you work with them. But iguanas are just so different and so individualized with
so much unique personality. It’s very cool to see. So I do kind of hope
that we get to work with more iguanas so we can really
compare this experience. ’cause I’m sure it’s gonna be different. Maybe better but also
could be a lot worse. What do you think of the species? Do you have any tips on the
stupid humidity in this thing? I guess it should really just be like a full wooden or glass
enclosure or something. But I really thought the
plastic would help, but nope. It’s also pretty ugly now. But, oh well. This is the green iguana. And before I end the video, now I have to get him
back in the enclosure. Yeah, I’m also impressed I finally had to succumb to using gloves. I never thought I’d do it with an animal. I can’t, I have this very
tiny viewfinder on my camera. And that’s all I have to go off. I’m just gonna let him
hop in the enclosure. Did it work? Hey, look at that, team work.

100 thoughts on “First Impressions on Green Iguanas as Pets

  1. One tip, don't allow him to sit on your head. For them, it is seen as being a king of the House. Try to keep him on your shoulder and if you are not confident yet about him, just in your hands/or some where near by. I know at first it is hard to keep them stil, but he will learn it. Just practice every day.

  2. I used a fogger with a crested gecko, it was nice, but you had to use distilled water. You might also find a desk top/counter top fountain at like at a dollar store, anything that'll cause water to fall through the air. A bottle with a hole that slowly drips; essentially the simplest construction.

  3. I'm dealing with the exact same thing but he's twice that size and he bites…hard. you're blessed he's as calm as he is, trust me ive seen worse

  4. My sister got one when it was a baby and it’s now about 5 feet long (tail included) and he’s pretty nice to humans, as in he doesn’t whip everyone he sees. We live in Florida and have a huge outdoor cage and we monitor his water and food plus he also has dandelions growing in his cage so he always has food

  5. My daughter had an iguana that just walked around the house set in the windows and chilled she also had a monitor that was in a huge ass cage and I had to feed it might live mice while she was on vacation that thing scared the crap out of me!!

  6. I live in Cancún, México and theres tons of this BIG BOIS in my school just running around. I still get spooked by them, I turn to my car and see a fucking godzilla waiting for me. And other times they fight eachother, and other times they run the whole parking lot in an scarily small amount of time.
    Theres been many times where they ENTER HOUSES, and not always by the front door. THEY COME FROM THE TOILET.
    I love reptiles and hope to house one one day. But not these fuckers, they look really nice but they make me anxious

  7. I took care of a green iguana once, wc. It sadly didn't survive, but boi. If I ever were to own a large lizard, an iguana is the last thing I would get. Juveniles don't bite much, but sub adult males reaching sexual maturity are super territorial and can inflict maiming wounds. Their tails are also quite painful as they get larger.

  8. These things live in the wild here I live one time a couple of years I fell asleep with the door open and woke up with a green iguana the length of my forearm the on my arm
    It was as startled as I was and ran straight out out of the room
    I had scratches allover my arm from that

    They are pretty but I wouldn't keep them as pets
    I can't imagine how painful a tail whip from a larger iguana would be I've only been whipped by a baby iguana when I tried to pet one as a child and it stung

  9. I've been thinking about doing the opposite of this to keep my basement apartment less humid this summer. You could get a cheap smart plug (~$20), a super cheap humidifier from CVS (I've seen em for $10 here) and a smart humidity sensor. Set the plug to go off at anything below the desired humidity, and all you'll have to do then is make sure the device is filled. Even the cheap one I got for the winter which just went off via the outside humidity would stay full for a full day of running constantly.

  10. Iguanas are so cool, wish I could have one but they’re a lot
    Of work and need very specific things…. I like how feisty he is

  11. Ouch…sorry, but diabetes is NOT caused just by eating sugar. I know it's a meme/trope/joke, but the number of people who think it is… It's especially frustrating for Type 1 diabetics, for whom its a genetic condition (the pancreas stops producing enough/any insulin) and who can end up consuming more sugar in their diet after diagnosis (to correct low blood sugars) than they were before.

  12. Chicken of the tree! They are actually delicious. If you live in Florida you can hunt endless amounts of them to eat.

  13. it took nearly ten years for my iguana to calm down and quite being an asshole and now he got loose and is stuck 30 feet up a tree.

    well, he's technically not stuck since I'm sure he can get down easily enough. It's just… we can't get him down. Soooo we just got to catch him on the ground.

    anyway, green iguanas are not easy pets. My guy has an solid sided indoor cage that's the size of a walk in closet, and an outdoor cage for the summer which is about ten times that size. outdoor cages are super important in my opinion. Males, when they are breeding condition, can become dangerous, since they want to either fight or fuck, and either one involves biting. They can and do bite, and when they do they can slice you right open to the bone. My guy ripped through my leather coat. Their teeth are small, nearly invisible, but extremely sharp and can rip right through you. They're not predatory, but the males can be territorial and if they view you as a rival they will attack.

    Humidity is provided by a room humidifier set directing into his solid-sided cage. I don't bother with a humidifier in his outdoor cage, but there's a variety of hose mister things you can use.

    A good way to get weight up on them is to make sure they're getting enough bulk. not just leafy greens, but also vegetables like zucchini, squash, etc. And I find vegetables high in protein like green beans help a lot as well (NO animal protein whatsoever! it's super bad for their kidneys!). I've had my iguana for 15 years, and if i find his dumb butt I can expect to have him another ten. they are not easy pets, they get really big compared to other lizards, and the green iguanas can have a bad attitude. I've seen other iguana species get as friendly as a dog, but i have not really seen green iguanas get that nice. That said, they are goofy and fairly smart for a reptile and it can be fun trying to outsmart them. it is a constant battle to keep him out of the cat food. Be aware that they are NOT afraid of heights. My guy jumped 15 feet off a balcony to and ran off when my back was turned. They are arboreal and heights simply do not intimidate them. The nice thing about them is that they do chill out as they get older, when they get bigger they seem to realize they don't need to worry about predators as much and quit being so scared of you.

  14. Maybe instead of lining the outside with plastic only try lining it with a tarp should keep some more moisture in

  15. Idk about you but i dont like being pooped or pee'd on idk if that's something you can relate to
    awkward pause

  16. I owned a Green Iguana for seventeen years. As much as I loved that animal they’re probably some of the worst herp pets. Hard to feed, shit non-stop, need a large and expensive enclosure, require lots of handling — and even then some will probably never tame down in the way that many other reptiles will…Males and females both have troublesome reproductive issues (females laying eggs are a pain in the ass — males in the breeding season are absolute bastards)…

  17. It has always amazed me that the demand for them could possibly justify the hundreds of these guys I used to see at pet stores. I had a really nice female iggy I was watching for like 6 months. She was like 5 ft when I got her and super docile. But she was the exception. They are cheap to buy and fairly expensive to care for when you consider how much time you have to spend with them to keep them happy. I cringe to think of a child having an iggy. I know stores will order dozens and not give a hoot if 15 die . I see them less now than I did a while back since they are now invasive species a bit south of where I live in Florida

  18. I think Clints reptiles has it best….are they a good pet lizard? NO ABSOLUTELY NOT.

    If you want a iguana get a rock iguana not a green one if you must.

  19. I saw blue iguanas at a recent herp show, and they were stunning! Still a handful I'm sure, but real stunners.

  20. we used to have an iguana at my herpetology extra curricular. He was awesome. He was very old, sweet, smart… enjoyed head rubs…

  21. Didn't expect the warp speed that moved at first, tail whip was class aswell. Prolly doesn't help with ythe plastic obscuring it's view causing it to freak when you open the door, it's obviously a very aware reptile

  22. I’m not sure what I should do but someone has this green iguana and it’s being kept in a box and looks veryyyy unhealthy and I can’t really tell if the tail it cut in the picture but anyways I have many pets in the house so when I bring it home I won’t be able to keep it for that long and I don’t know where to take him/her so if would be great if anyone had any suggestions because I do not want to leave it with the person because I’m sure that it’s not going to live for much longer but on the other hand I’m unable to keep an iguana at the moment

  23. That was hilarious- you literally couldn’t have scripted that when he ran back past the camera in the opposite direction- a true drama-guana… he’s just rehearsing for the lead role in 50 shades or grey ?

  24. From what i learend if your iguana is crazy try not to put them down untiil there calm it teaches them them to get put down you have to be behaived .

  25. That poor thing looks way to skinny. Seriously you think you know so much about reptiles but know nothing. The caging is completely wrong, wrong lighting, and probably underfed. Stop abusing these animals. Stop keeping reptiles. It's very obvious you have no clue what this animal requires to keep.

  26. If he doesn't bite that's a good thing because those bites are nasty. I've been in an reptilian exhibition a few times and other than the reptiles they are keeping they do also have a section dedicated to photos of reptile bites that weren't treated properly and there's also pictures of Iguana bites. Whilst it's obviously not as dramatic as a bite from a venomous snake it's still really brutal, the wounds usually get infected and necrotic and really, it's a lot worse than you would expect from a non-venomous herbivore. I guess what I wanted to say with this is, if you get bitten by something, especially if it's a large lizard, just visit a doctor rightaway. Even if it doesn't look that bad to begin with you really need to get that wound cleaned or it is almost guaranteed to go bad sooner or later.

  27. I have a green iganan his name is mr.iggs and I love him so much and he's so Mello and just chill I love them as pets but alot of heard work and dedication too

    And funny story when I first got him he scratched up my arms pretty bad and I went to school and my chior teacher had my principal call me into the office cuz she thought I was cutting ?
    Best? high ? school ? moment ?2019??

  28. At reptile show, wife: "we aren't buying anything". After 2hrs she see's a baby blue iguana "awww I like this one!" "Seriously woman, of all the animals in here?"

  29. I’m 11 years old I have a 8 yea old iguana had him Sense I was 3 and he bit my finger and he took a big chunk off

  30. Oh boy, I looked this video up because I previously watched 'Clint's Reptiles' about green iguanas. I really couldn't believe what he was telling there, even more extreme than in your vid – gory stuff about naturally gifted finger clippers. I just couldn't believe: When I was about your age (some 40 years ago), I came into contact with a boy whose family had a male green iguana 'Felix'. BTW that guy is still one of my best friends, still owning the nickname 'Iguan'. Felix was substantially bigger than your specimen and when he got nearly as big as a small dachshund they sold him to a family with something like a greenhouse or winter garden as a habitat. Felix was a real gentleman and only went for the bathroom in his cage, which sat on top of a sideboard in the dining room. Therefore his cage (containing some branches and the usual heating and UVB lamps) was kept open during the afternoon and evening hours, when family members where at home. He was free to go in the house wherever he wanted – you might imagine how scratched that sideboard looked ;). Mostly, Felix was sitting on top of his enclosure – between times of 'sunbathing' in the cage. In the evening, he sometimes payed a visit to the family members in the living room, watching tv with them. He always was chill and nice. As a visitor, I often stroke his head and nobody told me, "Watch up for your fingers!" So really, I don't know what to believe, but you already said that these guys come along with very different personalities – and I probably should mention that my friend's family had Felix since he was a tiny little baby – and, of course, I will talk with my old buddy Iguan about your and Clint's vids.

  31. That entire intro had me in tears. But no pet stores should definitely not sell these guys, since most people who buy from pet stores don’t particularly do enough research in care before buying them.

  32. I concur with most in the comment section, these make horrible pets. I had one for 4 or 5 years when I was a kid, I wanted a dog and my parents thought a lizard would be easier to hide from our landlord. No one knew what we were getting into! No matter how much I handled her she would whip you, run and bite. I remember one time I soaked her in the tub, I was trying to work with her and some stuck shed. Well my sister decided to barge in to get something, and the time it took for me to look to my sister then back to my iggy, she had clamped down on my thumb. That was when I was 10 and at 33 I still have the scar of the outline of her mouth.

  33. Those gloves and or just trying to snatch her out of her cage like that. With them you have to gain trust. Going in very slow with food. I fed mine insects for the 1st 6moths but you cant keep giving them that cause it will harden their organs. People say not to feed them at all but that's what they eat as hatchlings in the rain forest. You need to build him a wood cage twice the size he is in. Also they have the brain capacity of a labrador. They can be trained to go to the bathroom in one spot only. They can be taught how to know where stuff is in your house. They know what your face looks like and what you smell like. If someone my iguana dont know goes in his cage I feel sorry for him if I'm not here!
    I cut and dyed my hair and after that for 3 weeks he was mad as hell at me every single time I went in his cage. I'd have to stand in there hold his tail and lit his lick me for about 5 mins before he figured out it was me. They are really smart animals

  34. Once they get older and mature, you will love them, even as thier young, some have mellow personalities, others are ass holes at times! They do go crazy mating season. Keep them locked in thier enclosure only if necessary during the wild child time. Moist' humid, heat lamp in one corner, drinking water and plenty of fresh foods. Also wash your hands before handling them so you don't get an expensive vet bill later.

  35. PSA. Unless you are a dedicated professional like our friend here. You should not be owning an iguana. Theres a reason pet stores only ever sell them as babies and you only ever see adult igs at animal rescues.

  36. Ida just given him insects to get his weight up, my young iguanas LOVE superworms (I only give them like a couple a week now and when they get older I’ll stop)

  37. I don’t know how big an adult iguana is so I went on google and my mouth drooopeddd like bro , I feel like some animals are best not as pets , eg iguanas they’re so complex

  38. Why isn’t my iguana eating the hamburger or ground turkey I’ve been giving him? Do I cook it? I’ve been giving it to him raw.

  39. I love iguanas I have keep them in the past and I have always found once there about 2-3 feet long letting them free roam. With a basking rock and light

    I had one so big I had a kitty pool for him

  40. The first mistake here was letting the Iguana onto your head; they believe they've dominated you, and as such, is the Alpha, not you.
    The second was allowing the Iguana to escape your hands.

    If you happen to home another one, don't allow it onto your head or to escape your hands.
    As much as it seems like they can hurt themselves, they're tough and won't be hurting themselves easily.

    I currently have two, and with my first iguana I did both of those things, and I had to spend months breaking the habit of it.

  41. 13 stitches in my face, top lip re-attached and plastic surgery needed due to my "pet" Iguana lunging at me and biting my top lip off. Kept him anyway thought it was my fault. Second time 10 stitches in the forearm-ambulance came due to heavy bleed-i re-homed the son of a bitch. He was 4ft long at the time. They do NOT make good pets once they hit puberty. Both attacks were completely unprovoked of course. Opened his cage to feed him and WHAM. He got out once and CHASED me. I grabbed my broom he bit the end of it and wouldn't let go. So I had a 4ft pissed lizard hanging off my broom. Pet stores should BAN them. It doesn't matter if you "work" with them or not-i did mine daily-they are still wild animals and when they hit mating age are insanely dangerous. I've raised herps for about 25 years now.

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