Keeping Pet Iguanas, The Easy Guide

The green iguana is one of the most commonly kept pet iguanas. The iguana is native to Central and South America, as well as some Caribbean islands. They live mostly in the tropics, especially in humid areas. They are tree dwellers, with older animals often living higher in the trees than younger animals. Iguanas grow, including tail between 150 and 200 centimeters.

The body of a male can grow about 50 centimeters long, that of the female about 40 centimeters. They have dark bands on the tail and body. A crest runs across the back and at the base of the tail, and a large wattle hangs below the head. On the lower jaw is a large, rounded scale.


The iguana is known for its tameness, yet iguanas do not become nearly as tame as their caretakers would like. Iguanas communicate with each other through body language, such as head nods and scratching movements. You can tame your iguana, but it takes a lot of patience. The best method is to earn animals’ trust.

Food Iguana

By nature, iguanas eat mostly leafy vegetables, flowers and fruits. Insects are also sometimes eaten. It is best to feed your iguana a versatile diet. Some vegetables you can feed are kale, endive, cauliflower, carrot and spinach. Cabbages are also healthy to give. In addition, you can give fruits such as strawberries, banana, kiwi and tangerine.

You may also want to know if iguanas can eat meat.

pet iguanas

Housing & care of your pet iguanas

There is a lot involved in setting up, decorating and maintaining a terrarium. Pet iguanas are group animals and therefore should not be kept alone. It is not recommended to keep several males together due to dominance problems.

Purchase a large terrarium with plenty of climbing and hiding places. Put a large water bowl in the terrarium and clean it daily. This is because pet iguanas tend to do their business in the water bowl. These reptiles like to rest and sunbathe on horizontal places such as branches, high up in the terrarium under a heat spot. The temperature in the terrarium should be between 25 and 30 degrees Celsius, with local temperatures of 35 to 40 degrees under heat lamps.

Iguanas need UV light to produce sufficient vitamin D. Day and night should last 12 hours each; this can be controlled by using a timer for the lamps. The humidity in the terrarium should be 60-80% during the day and between 80-100% at night. Spray the terrarium and animals every day, but do not wet them permanently.

Health & disease

A healthy iguana is alert, looks clear out of its eyes and has smooth skin. Iguanas are more sensitive to stress than other lizard species. Stress can lead to disease, or make conditions worse. Lime and vitamin deficiency can cause rickets, a disease that causes the animal to develop deformed bones and fractures. Laying distress can also occur in females that cannot get rid of their eggs. Other conditions include parasite infections. Doubting the health of your iguana? If so, consult a veterinarian who specializes in reptiles.


Keep in mind that a pet always comes with a cost. In addition to purchasing the animal and a suitable enclosure with furnishings, there are recurring costs. Your animal will need daily food that meets its specific needs. The furnishings of the enclosure and especially bedding must also be repurchased regularly. Parts of the enclosure will sometimes suffer damage and therefore need to be replaced. Also, your animal may get sick and therefore require a vet visit and treatment. Also consider the time you need to schedule for the daily care of your animal.