Angry Iguana Problems :(
Posted by Laura Lynch on 8/20/2015, 1:48 pm
My Husband and I have a 5 foot Iguana that my Husband rescued from someone who knew nothing about how to care for one. Poor Ignatius (the Iguana) was in a cage that was far too small and was being fed kale! There was a large dog where Ignatius was living that would hang by his cage, and that got him in the habit of charging the glass of his cage, to the point where his nose would get bloody at times! It just broke our hearts so we finally were able to get him away from this place, and while it did take a month or two we were finally to build him a large habitat. I thought once he was in a large cage and could roam free, combined with a good diet and no large dog, it would solve his aggressive tendencies, that he would finally be happy. We had a small house inside the cage that he could hide in for the first couple months, we have multiple levels he can climb on, we have two heat bulbs and a large UV bulb in a shop light. He has a well balanced diet. When we first got him in his new cage he did calm down quite a bit for awhile. I was able to get him out and give him a bath a couple of times which he seemed to enjoy. He was weak from being in such a small cage, and didn't have very good use of his muscles so he allowed me to pick him up and carry him to and from the tub without any fuss. A couple of months ago the person whose house he had been staying at, with the dog and poor diet, came to visit and see him. Once he saw them he became very aggressive and even lunged at me later on that day, which he had never done in all the time he'd lived with us! He had lunged at my Husband all along and we figured that was due to the fact that he was an aggressive male, and once we got him in the large cage, that had been happening less frequently. Since he saw that person again, he has been lunging at the wall of his cage any time anyone walks by. Even when there's no one around sometimes he will attack the wall! He bobs his head constantly. The front wall of his cage is covered in chicken wire and with him charging at people as they go by, his poor chin has started to bleed! It looks painful and I've wondered if that is part of the reason for his aggression, but I don't know how to get his chin to heal because he continues to smash his face at the wall! He has also become VERY strong after spending a number of months in this large cage and he is VERY fast! There are times when we can't get in to feed him because he charges the door every time we open it. Since he has started to lunge at me I haven't given him baths. I'm not scared of him, but I do have a healthy respect for the damage Iguanas can do and now that he is acting aggressive to even me, I'm cautious about pushing my luck. He has never intentionally hurt me, and once I started wearing gloves and long sleeves I rarely even got scratched. He seemed so happy swimming in the bathtub, but I'm apprehensive about putting myself in front of him with his aggression so high... I'm sorry this was so long! I just wanted to give as much background info as possible in the hopes that maybe someone has had a similar experience or some advice to offer. Part of me feels that if I stand up to him (well covered, with gloves etc) he will back down and let me pick him up. Part of me worries he might not lol. We need to figure out some way to get him to calm down soon because we haven't been able to clean his cage the way I'd like or care for his spikes, and I just want him to be happy again like he was when we first got him in the big cage. |
Any advice would be greatly appreciated!!