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Reptiles/Baby Green Iguana In Trouble!


My boyfriend and I recently rescued a young 2-3 month old green iguana from a reptile store. This brave little man was in a cage with  15 other babies, 2x and even 3-4x his size. He has been doing fine for the past month that we have had him, but in the past few days, we have noticed that he has had drastic weight loss, and color change. He is eating and pooping normally, we have the cage tempture between 80-85. We feed him twice a day.
We also have another rescue baby in the same cage with him. Do you know what could possibly wrong with him? The soonest we can get to a vet is in two days :( He has gone downhill super quikly and we are worried. Any answer would be helpful... Thank you!

Hi Lindsay,

The first thing that jumps out at me is your temperature. It is far too cool for an iguana.

The general, ambient background temperature can be 80 - 85F but they need a basking/hot spot of 95 - 105 F. Iguanas typically bask for much of the day.

Temperature is critical for reptiles. Everything from proper digestion, metabolizing nutrients and a functioning immune system relies on them being able to access this range of temperatures to regulate their own body temperature.

This link has good info on heating, lighting and feeding an iguana. Good luck with the vet, I hope your rescue effort has a happy ending.


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I can answer questions on the proper husbandry and diet of Iguanas, bearded dragons, geckoes, skinks, chameleons, tortoises, box turtles, treefrogs, non-venomous snakes and tarantulas. Also the breeding of some species of feeder insects. I have no experience with venonmous snakes and only limited experience with aquatic turtles.


I have been keeping and breeding reptiles for over 30 years. In addition to my regular job in the medical field I also worked for several years in a pet store that specialized only in exotics. The job entailed both caring for and answering questions on innumerable species. It required constant, extensive research into a wide range of reptiles. I have been called to appear on televised national media (CBC, CTV and Life Channel) as well as CBC radio to discuss the proper care of reptiles and other exotics in captivity. I currently own one or more species of those listed under my expertise with the exception of chameleons. I owned chameleons for years but keep none currently. I keep over 20 snakes comprising 5 species, both Colubridae and Boidae. I bred corn snakes for several years. I have a particular interest in treefrogs and currently have 5 different species. I've raised redfoot tortoises for 10 years and have two iguanas, one for 12 years.

A small and now defunct local magazine called "Pet Vue"

Diagnostic medical microbiology with some parasitology experience.

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