Melissa Kaplan's
Herp Care Collection
Last updated January 1, 2014

You Know You're Ig-Wipped When...

Part I

Compiled by Melissa Kaplan


Started by Carroll McNeill and "and Baguana who has me RIGHT where she wants me."

As Carroll goes on to explain: "Actually, I have it on good authority (two trendy teens) that the usage of "wipped" is correct.  "Whipped", in relation to iguanas, is the state of being beaten about the head and shoulders with their tail. "Wipped", on the other hand, is the state of being beaten into psychological submission by your devotion to their every whim. "

Note: the most recent entries appear at the top of the list for the ease of returning visitors. If you have any wippisms to add, you can email them to me.

And The Whipped Award Goes To... Hillary Breton!
I know I'm iguana whipped. During a three-week trip to Utah to visit my boyfriend and watch the 2002 Winter Olympics, my mother called to inform me that my iguana, Mortisha, had not done her "poopies" in the nine days that I had been gone. Frantic, I hopped on a plane the very next day to return home to the pure satisfaction of seeing my iguana do her "poopies" five minutes after I came home. I missed out on some events, a chance to meet the cast of the Today show, along with an ending relationship with a man who couldn't understand why I had to go - all happily to ensure Mortisha's well-being. That is the true definition of being Ig-Whipped!

David Kramer
I know I'm Ig-wipped because I realize there are homeless and starving people in my city, but my iguanas have their own bedroom.

Karen Gillespie
...your "baby" freaks out after an unavoidable (first and last) visit by a dog (during which he was "safely" in another room), and after much trauma (mostly yours), you discover through trial and error that reading out loud is very calming to Selma...

 ...then you completely cross over the line by deciding--becoming absolutely convinced---that "The Lady of Shallott" is his favourite poem. And you sit in a chair for an hour and half and read out loud to your green friend.

As much as I love my iguana "Ed", my family has become even more "ig-wipped" than I am. Ed always becomes the center of attention with my family. I know I'm wipped when: parents refer to my iguana, Ed, as their "green grandchild".

My family calls to see how Ed is doing.

...come to visit and hold lengthy conversations with my iguana and invite him to over to their house to meet their friends. (I just know they're gossiping about me!)

My parents refer to me as "Ed's Mom" so often they have forgotten my real name.

My mother citicizes my iggy-parenting skills.

...they buy Ed lunch. (just Ed, not me)

...the neighbors' kids ask if Ed can come out to play.

Steve Stull
...after bragging to the vet how good natured Dozer, your 6 pound male Peruvian is, he proceeds to effectively hog-tie you by climbing up your back, pinning both of your hands to the back of your head with the claws of one foot, causing the Vet to break out in peals of laughter and calling his techs in to extricate you from the predicament.

...regaining your freedom, you proudly smile and exclaim....see...he never bit or whipped at me once.

bki@ mindspring realize that you are crooning to him from the shower. (yes, I do this, and It's gotten worse. Do you have a support group?)

Your iguana has his own electric blankie because the crazy humans keep it too cold during the winter.

You decline buying a certain recreation vehicle because it doesn't have the right "ig platform/dash board".

You debate bunk beds in the guest room so "he" doesn't have to share.

The low profile basket your ig personally chose as his toilet is the first thing to get packed in the car when taking him with you on vacation.

You find yourself running at the first scratch at the door to let your ig in to the house from 'his' screen room when he's done sunning and getting fresh air.

You debate returning home to get your ig out of the window to bring him with you on your errands because he looked so pathetic watching you leave him.

You actually do return home to get your pathetic ig.  Afterwards, he proceeds to  terrorize the road and all its occupants from the dash and rear window of your car.

Your husband yells that he can't make dinner because you've dirtied all the dishes and cutting boards in the kitchen making the newest batch of salad for the igs.

...your igs get more smoochies than any movie star on TV. can get ig snotted in the face and can still happily call them your sweetie babies.

...when you are getting married 1500 miles away from where you live and you need to drive with everything in the back of the Jeep, because its too expensive to fly with your ig's enclosure and Ig. You couldn't leave her home because she had a fit that last time you were gone for two days, and would have hated to miss the honeymoon. (Yes, she was there for that too.)

Carroll McNeil find yourself up and outdoors in the middle of the (dark and moonless) with a flashlight, digging up and potting a hibiscus plant so that you can bring it inside for your owner to enjoy in her enclosure while you are away for the weekend." (sigh)

Vampyra Draculea
Your upper arms look like pincushions; she likes to dig in and hang vertically from this area.

...though they don't know your name, every supermarket cashier knows you're the iguana owner, and they never cease to be amazed at how many greens you buy and how often. ("Back again so soon?")

...everyone in the house agrees to leave the TV on for the ig when no one's home so she won't be lonely or bored (bad enough); but you as the primary ig owner/mummy are horrified whenever you come home to discover the TV is tuned to soaps or talk shows, and then you bitch at everyone else in the household for not putting it on educational TV instead ("Don't expose my Luci to such mindless trash!!! I want her to be intellectually stimulated!")

You email your relatives who are coming to visit and will be sharing the guest room with the ig to remind them not to bring any clothing that's red or pink since it upsets her and to inform them that she will want them to be quiet and not snore. (Fortunately, these are my ig-loving relatives, so they're used to this sort of thing.)

You gave up on fighting with your ig to syringe liquid calcium into her, and ended up spending lots of time squirting out the juice from orange pieces and grapes in order to replace the juice with calcium. The funny thing is that the ig likes the taste of the calcium, and so was delighted with the new method.

...our former living room is now the ig's room, and humans must put up with the ig mistreating them in order to watch TV here.

You let the ig play with an old remote control so she can think she's controllng the TV.

...your dad's friends grow extra kale, mustard & collard greens, and assorted berries for the iguana (makes for cheap food bills in the summer.)

Your mom's coworkers all want to know why she hasn't got any pics of the iguana in her office, since she ends up telling them about the ig's adventures.

You tell your brother and his wife that if only they'd get rid of their damn cat, their house with its big windows and screened in porch would be perfect for bringing their reptilian niece over for visits.

You respond to wedding invitations by writing "Mr/Ms ________ will attend, unfortunately however (ig's name) won't be attending." (Mine doesn't like it when there's too many people around - this usually means she isn't the center of attention, and that's just unacceptable to her.)

You plant, in full view of your ig's favorite window, shrubs in your garden that will require a lot of maintenance since you know your darling loves watching humans labor for her entertainment.

When your ig's napping, you shush everyone in the house because you know she gets annoyed when awakened from her beauty rest.

You see her resting her chin on a rock or rough branch and feel guilty that she might not be the most comfortable, and sew her a little iggy pillow from some leftover fabric (picking green if at all possible).

You knit her a new blanky and all your friends pitch in a few rows of stitches. Since she quickly outgrows them, this has been a yearly ritual in September in the club I hang out on at my university between classes.

Your grandmother (who has a couple of other great-grandiggies as well) bakes apple and fruit pies mostly for the humans, but with the command that we share some of the filling with the iguana. (The iguana obviously has her wipped too.)

You put in a big huge laundry-style tub/sink in your laundry room so the iguana doesn't have to share her facilities with us lesser species.

Hi, my name is Becky and I'm an Igaholic. I admit that I am powerless over my iguana and that my life has become unmanageable. It all started for me when my daughter said, "Mom, will you buy me an iguana? They're only $10 and we already have a 10 gallon aquarium to keep him in."

"OK, Sweetie, I like reptiles. What a good idea! It's very important that you take care of it, though. I don't need any more pets..." Several incandescent basking bulbs, fluorescent UVB bulbs, a heat rock, no heat rock, fancy vitamins, plain vitamins, a 20 gallon tank, a 55 gallon tank, fancy substrate, no substrate, hand built enclosure, CHE, deluxe heating pads, space heaters, humidifier and well over $1500 in vet bills later, I have another pet! I'm turning my flower beds into iggie greens gardens. I've quit digging up the dandelions. I select my grocery store based entirely on the produce section. I moved furniture out of my living room to make room for the iggie enclosure. My forearms look like I practice self-mutilation. I make iggie food before I make my coffee. At work, I've replaced pictures of my daughter with pictures of my Fife. It seems normal to have a 4 foot ig swimming and pooping in my bathtub. All of my friends know that Fife is a SHE, not a HE. I'm considering a webcam so I can make sure Fife is OK while I'm at work. I want to install a sun room on my house, just for Fife. Where will it end??? Sob, sob, sniffle.

I've heard that no one can recover from igaholism until they've hit rock bottom. Does that mean that I have to actually start saving iguana parts in little containers in my freezer before I can get better??? Oh, the agony.....Could it be that this isn't the bottom???

Carroll McNeil
... you find yourself hollowing out the inside of a pea so you can substitute the tiny piece of bread you used to soak up oral antibiotic.

You find yourself humming along to your iguana's "favorite" song because she likes to have you hum while you dance together.

... you put the old brown-edged greens into the soup you're making for the family because you want to save all the good fresh ones for your special baby.

You find yourself paying for the expensive vet visit with leftover traveler's checks so your beloved spouse will remain blissfully convinced that this is, after all, "just a lizard".

You spend a long time (possibly a VERY long time) crouched in front of a small hole in the wallboard into which you fear your new and unacclimated iguana may have escaped, talking into the hole, and leaving a flashlight there overnight so she won't be afraid all alone in there, only to find her the next day peeking out of a closet in a completely different room and giving you that unmistakable"Well, where WERE you?!" look.

You gather up the remains of your cherished collection of birds' nests which had (perhaps foolishly) been displayed for years on a low window ledge and mutter philosophically that it's almost Spring and there will always be more nests to find.

You absently reach up to tend to a passing itch in your ear and when you resume typing you notice (perceptive typist that you are) that suddenly you are smearing large quantities of blood all over the keyboard. ("Odd", you think)... Reaching less absently back up to check the ear, you discover that it is almost completely filled with blood, yet never once does the thought that you could be having a major brain hemorrhage cross your mind because you, after all, own an iguana who just climbed down from your head and ("Hmm", you think) must be overdue for a manicure. 

Julie Allison
You tuck your 12 pound iguana in every night by covering him with his blankie.

You limit your reading light in the evening so you won't wake him up.

You serve your iguanas their salad on a bed of dandelion greens (picked fresh from the yard), and top it off with fresh picked nasturtiums and marigolds. 

You keep a framed photograph of your iguana on your desk (and you position it in front of the group photo of your kids and step kids, because at least the iguana is smiling)...

Your kids look in the fridge for something to eat and they say, "There is nothing to eat in here except iguana food!"

...all your friends call you to ask if your iguana needs anything from town...before asking you if you need anything!

...(literally) when you stick you hand in the cage and there is a whop and a sting and a red welt develops. :-o

Desiree Wong
You drive 5.5 hours to Northern California for a pignic rather than fly because you want to bring your iguana and have her mate w/ Adam "the iguana".

Your daily ritual includes making fresh iguana salad in the morning and coming home on sunny afternoons at lunch to let the iguana out for sunbathing on the front lawn.

You go to the beach to take the iguana sunbathing.

You wake up in dire need of coffee and breakfast but feed and potty the iguana first.

You don't just plan get-togethers with plan them with iguanas in mind.

You [are] walking along the strand at the beach, looking at the million dollar beachfront homes, with Kim Scott (mom to Bumpy, Brownie, Guana and Hopper) whose only thoughts were on "guana windows", ie..which house had the best windows and setup for basking spots for each of her 4 iguanas.  Guess we know who will start playing Lotto (California lottery) soon!

Rich (TxDax)
You are asked how many children you have and you reply "x # human and x # iguanas"

You are ready to call the AP every time your ig poops.

You can hold a three hour discussion on iguana poop.

You can tell the supermarket cashier all the produce codes. a male, I can tell the difference between mustard, collard, and dandelion greens by the smell.

... you can spend an entire evening picking off every last little bit of shed skin.

...somebody say's something bad about iguanas and you react like they just called your mother a dirty name.

You rearrange your house twice a year so that your iguana can get the best sun time.

...not only do you baby proof your house by crawling around on your knees, you ig proof your house by crawling around on your belly.

You take it as a complement not an insult that your ig has marked you as his or her property by pooping on your shoulder.

You feel like death warmed over do to this new Flu strain and yet you set your alarm to go off every 2 hours so your ig doesn't miss any of your bonding time.

Beth Kantrowitz
Your best friends buy a wonderful new house and all you can say when being given the grand tour is "this sunporch would be great for iguanas - just open the windows to let all that natural sunlight in through the screens.  I love this hardwood floor but if you had igs they'd be sliding all the time.  If I lived here with my igs, I'd give them the sunny front bedroom for themselves.  Your cat loves looking out that window... here's how I'd fix it up as a basking site for Esme and Calliope..."  Etcetera.  You get the point.  I hope they invite me back sometime.

You and your significant other spend half an hour on the kitchen floor trying to coax your ig to eat her veggies, sitting there with a spoon saying, "come on lizzy, come on lizzy, eat your veggies, come on girl..." and then you cave in anyway and feed her that wheat bread or banana she was holding out for.

Katie Kearns
... when you let your ig plunder through the plants you're so incredibly proud of, allowing her to eat half your arugala and sit on your parsley. And you're just thrilled she deemed it 'good enough' to eat!

Alta Brewer spend more time preparing their food than your food.

...your husband makes not so subtle references to the lizards eating better than he does.

Your husband has stopped making not so subtle references to the lizards eating better than he does.  ;)

You only go to the grocery store when you run out of ig salad;  the humans have opposable thumbs and can fend for themselves.

You evaluate every stuffed animal you see in terms of its potential as an ig sex toy.'ve ever considered lizards as *needing* sex toys.

You consider Mader's Reptile Medicine and Surgery to be a coffee table book.

You've ever searched for pictures of hemipenes on the web.

You've put pictures of hemipenes on the web.  ;)

You coo and tell your new spiny-tail that he's safe and no one is going to hurt him...while he's biting you...and you mean it.

You stand there and drip blood all over the carpet after he lets go so you don't scare the poor baby by moving too fast.

Your friends are planning a group vacation to Florida, and before you can say a word, they are already telling you that your iguana is not going.

You get the evil-eye from all grocery store baggers because you demand they pack your greens perfectly because your baby wont eat them bruised.

You spend 45 minutes typing left-handed because your ig fell asleep on your right shoulder and you don't want to wake him/her up.

...all of your friends have seen video footage of you reading a bedtime story to your 4' lizard.

Your husband/co-habitator walks in from work and kisses your iguana before you.

You volunteer to speak about your job to your sons Boy Scout troop, but they ask you to bring your iguana instead.

You ask for a 'doggie bag' for your leftover salad when you're on your first night out in months.

...after you win the California Lotto, then you begin thinking about moving someplace where Iguanas live outdoors year round.  They love it & so do you!

... the iguana doesn't seem to be very happy about the food you've spent 2 hours preparing and doesn't want to eat it, so you run to the grocery store to buy different food, spend at least 1 hour at home preparing it, and then give it to him all in hopes of giving him something he would like to eat....Yet, when you spend 15 minutes making lunch and your child tells you "I don't want a sandwich mommy, I want soup", you respond with, "You'll eat what I already made, this isn't a restaurant where you can just put in your order and expect to get the food you want all the time!"

You get bitten and don't make him or her into a trendy belt!

... you pick up your ig, he feels cold so you lay him on your body to warm up, cover him with a blanket, he falls asleep and you don't move for an hour because you are afraid to wake him up 'cause he looks so cute.

DgrsDad26're very well known in your supermarkets produce isle, but you're not a vegetarian!

You put flannel sheets on the lounge chair outside to entice your ig to lay out with you longer.

You're laying in the sun sweating, but you mist your ig every couple of minutes so SHE doesn't get too hot.

boleys're relaxing in your tub,and you slip down too get a view of what your iggy sees when he's using it and decide you gotta bring a little jungle into that tub.

...your friends are calling you too see if your igs feeling better yet today...and you have had a cold for a week.

tlp6042 kneel on the floor when using your computer because your ig is resting comfortably in your soft, plush, $150 computer chair and you don't want to disturb her.

Florence.Saforo look for a certain Kodak camera with panaromic view so that you can get every bit of the handsome boy's picture in the shot and then need just the right frame to show it off.  (Everyone wants to know why I don't have pictures of my girls on my desk, too.) can't sleep until you've checked on them often enough to feel secure that they are safe.'re looking for the perfect substitute for your baby in heat to relate to as long as it is not your body he goes after.

lauramd have a large, unsightly, 4x4x6' cage in your lizard room, inhabited solely by a t.v. stand, because the intended inhabitant decided he didn't like the cage (I'm skink-wipped, too), there's no place else in the room for the t.v. stand (given all the other iguana ramps, shelves & paraphanalia), the t.v. provides invaluable entertainment for the iguanas and must remain (despite the need to view it thru 1/2" hardware cloth), and you can't get rid of the ridiculous cage because the iguanas have decided they REALLY like having a nice 4x4' platform 6' off the ground as an additional hangout.

Melissa Kaplan know more about product identifcation and nutritional information than most supermarket produce buyers. read the confessions of other people kept by their iguanas and identify with most (if not all!) of them.


 More You know you're ig-wipped when... Part II

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