Green Iguana Society logo  1999-2001, D. Baze

Why bathe or soak an iguana? Many people think that iguanas are dirty creatures. This is not true. The fact is, green iguanas are very clean animals, they just sometimes have dirty owners and filthy cages. Along with proper hygiene and cleanliness, regularly bathing or soaking is a necessity. Regular bathing and soaking will help in keeping the iguana clean, help in shedding and help clean off any food or feces that may be on it. An iguana soaking in water may also defecate shortly after entering the water. If this happens, drain the water and replace it with fresh water before continuing with the bath. Many owners use bath time as a way of getting their pet to defecate, and can be very effective in training it when and where to go. Bathing and soaking is also a very good form of exercise.

How often should an iguana be given a bath? Depending on how much time the owner spends with it, a bath can be given every day to once a week. The more baths it gets, the cleaner and probably healthier it will be. The Green Iguana Society recommends that baths and soaks be given at least once a week.

Where to give an iguana a bath. Most iguana owners either give their iguana a bath in their bathtub or in another large tub especially for the iguana. When using a bathtub that is used by people, it’s imperative that the tub is thoroughly cleaned and disinfected after it's been used. Many people even let their iguanas have showers, and sometimes the owner showers with them. Strange as it may sound, it may be an effective way to provide humidity, clean the iguana, and spend some time with it as well. However or wherever an iguana gets a bath is fine, just as long as it gets it and the owner is cautious. One word of caution though, it may be a bad idea to bathe an iguana in a kitchen sink or in a place that has food nearby.




How to give an iguana a bath. After the location of the bath or soak has been determined, the tub should be filled with warm water to a certain height. Make sure the water is not too deep. A good height should be about the height of the iguanas head when laying down. So, basically, it should be a relatively shallow tub of warm water. The temperature should be warm, but not hot. Soap is not needed and should not be used. After a while in the tub soaking, the temperature of the water will begin to cool, so the water will need to be either replaced or boosted with warmer water.

How long should the bath or soak be? At first, with a young iguana, it’s a good idea to ease it into the whole bathing experience. A young iguana should start out with only a few minutes and gradually work its way up to about 30 minutes which is about normal for an adult iguana.

What to be cautious of when bathing an iguana. As with all aspects of caring for an iguana, being cautious when bathing or soaking one is important. The water should always be around the proper temperature. It’s a good idea to make sure that there is nothing in the tub that it may catch a claw on. An iguana should never be left alone, totally unsupervised, while soaking. Stepping out of the room for only a few minutes can be very dangerous, so being cautious and expecting the unexpected is very important.

The importance of misting the iguana and its habitat. It's very important to mist or spritz the iguana and its habitat at least once daily. This provides for better humidity in the habitat as well as aiding in the shedding process. This can be done with a simple spray bottle, filled with clean, fresh water. It's important not to use a spray bottle that has been used with any chemicals or other harmful substances. Some people also use elaborate misting systems. Although a misting system can be expensive, it can be a very effective way to provide proper humidity for the iguana as well as ease the burden of doing another daily task. The Green Iguana Society recommends that the habitat and iguana be misted with fresh water every single day.








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