Iguanas are creatures of the hot arid regions, and when the temperature decreases, they feel uncomfortable; most of them go to hibernation at that point. But when the temperature is high outside, you can plan to give the iguana a bath once a week, which will rejuvenate it.
Do Iguanas prefer bathing?
Iguanas are mostly found on the top of trees in wild. They do not stay much on land until they need to mate or lay eggs. But when they somehow go into the water, it has been seen that they have exceptional swimming ability. However, as per choice, they do not like to stay in water much.
Importance of bathing
Heat and humidity are two crucial factors to keep the iguana healthy. They need warm weather as well as a good level of humidity regularly. Some of the owners bathe their pets regularly. If you are unable to do so, at least bathe them twice a week. Regular bathing makes their skin moist and also treats the cracked skin. When not bathed for quite a few days, the cracks can get wider, and thus the chance of getting infected by bacteria increases.
How to bathe the Iguana?
The process is pretty simple but you need to be cautious while bathing the iguana.
- You need a bathtub filled with warm water. The water depth should not be higher than the chest level of an iguana.
- Put towels around the bathtub as that will soak the spilled water while the iguana will bath.
- Now you can carefully hold the iguana and place it in the tub. If it is a juvenile one and is brought recently to your place, then it may get shocked or frightened.
- Once it is accustomed to the water and started feeling comfortable, it will start enjoying it. However, the water level should not be so high that the pet can get drowned.
- Do not leave the iguana alone in the bathtub, and always be at its side. You do not know when some accident can happen.
Bath time for Iguana:
It needs to be kept in a while within the water when the iguana will soak the water with its skin. But do not wait for enough for the water to become cold, as it will uncomfortable for the iguana. Apparently, 20 minutes is enough for the iguana to get soaked the adequate moisture.
What not to use for the Iguana bath:
- You should not use soap on iguana. Also, a bubble bath is not recommended for reptiles.
- If your pet roams on the grounds and rides on the trees, you may find it getting dirty and mud stuck to its claws or face. But regular soap is strictly prohibited for this purpose. Use a baby body wash in a small amount in the water.
- Instead of using a scrubber, use a washcloth or an old toothbrush to remove the dirt from the scales of the body and face. Also, you should clean the nails properly with brushes.
Bathing a Shedding Iguana:
Like any reptiles, Iguanas shed, and you need to take special care of your pet, while it is shedding. The time taken for a full shedding is up to 3 weeks. If you soak it often during this period, it will make the process smooth and hassle-free.
- Check the Iguana if the unshed skins are builds on the toes and nails of the reptile. These parts of the iguana are used to have folded skin. Also area around the neck you can find dewlap along with the spikes and crest.
- The water that you need for the shedding iguana is warmer than the usual one, as it should be around 31 degrees Celsius. Keeping the iguana inside the water, you need to massage slowly around its body.
- Once you take it out of the water, you can wrap it in a towel soaked in hot water. Keep the towel on for 5 minutes but do not cover the head of the iguana as that may choke it.
- After the wet towel, again wrap it in a dry towel and keep for another few minutes.
- Mineral oil needs to be applied to the rough spots. The dead cells on the rough skin will be softened with the mineral oil. You need to apply the oil after you bathe the dragon as the wet skin will absorb the oil faster and effectively.
- Be cautious of not dropping oil on the eyes or mouth of the iguana, as this can be poisonous for this reptile when goes internally.
- In the time of shedding you can repeat the bathing, soaking, and oiling process daily, so the stubborn skin wears off easily and fast.
How to keep the Iguana hydrated?
- Other than occasional bathing twice a week, you should keep a shallow water bowl on the cage of the iguana, where it can take a dip once in a while.
- The soaking bowl should be wide enough to hold the full body of the iguana. This bowl should not be lightweight, or else when the iguana will try to take a dip, it may tilt and the water may fell on floor.
- The bowl water needs to be changed once a week, to prevent the gathering of moss in that bowl. Also if the iguana drops food or poops inside it, you should change the water immediately.
- Other than bathing you can spray mist in the cage of the iguana to keep the body and skin moist.
- The owners who have pools at their home can take their iguanas to the pool to see if it enjoys swimming. As we have mentioned that most of the iguanas love to swim, it may enjoy the pool session, even if it is taken there regularly.
Iguana water temperature
The water should be moderately warm, it can be 28 to 29 degrees celsius hot, and it will gradually get cooled down.
This is a strange and true phenomenon of an iguana. This reptile creature is a cleanliness freak, and unlike many reptiles or pet animals, they do not like to defecate within their territory. When you keep a water dish inside their cage, it is most likely that they will poop inside that water dish and not on the floor of the terrarium.
There is another reason they poop inside water. When they are not defecating for a few days, you can give it a shallow dish of water. Most likely it will not drink from it but will poop inside it. There is something naturally motivating them to defecate while inside water.