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

Why call it the "Giant Green Iguana"?

©1997 Melissa Kaplan


Calling Iguana iguana is an attempt to drive home the fact that green iguanas, regardless of their color or country country of origin, are considered giant lizards. If you care for them properly, they will reach 5-6 feet within 4-5 years.

If you don't want a big lizard, then don't get a green iguana. There are no dwarf species, despite what some pet stores will tell you and try to sell you. There is no way to dwarf a green iguana unless you subject it to chronic malnutrition and constant hypothermia. Yes, keeping it in a 10 gallon tank will help stunt its growth. It will also make it crazy and sick. The only way to get an iguana to stay small is by slowly killing it (that's what keeping it in a small tank, feeding it lousy food, and keeping it too cold does: kills it) or by buying one of those cute molded plastic or stuffed ones. These toys don't look terribly realistic (especially the ones made in China from molds made from water dragons), but, then again, a stunted and deformed living iguana isn't terribly realistic looking, either...

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