Reptiles & Amphibians

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Making an Indoor Home for a Terrestrial Turtle or Small Tortoise

You can house your terrestrial turtle or tortoise in a number of ways: glass aquariums, commercially designed reptile cages, home-built wooden enclosures, and plastic swimming pools. However, before you [more…]

Selecting an Aquatic or Semi-Aquatic Turtle

In the wild, aquatic and semi-aquatic turtles live wherever there is a constant source of water, coming out to forage, bask in the sun, or lay eggs. Quick-running rivers, slow, meandering streams, and [more…]

Understanding Turtles and Tortoises

When you think of turtles, do you think of the tiny quarter or half-dollar-sized turtles that used to be sold in pet stores (and in some places still are)? If so, you're not alone. That image is the one [more…]

Getting the Basics about Iguanas

The first thing to know when considering an iguana for a pet is that several different types of related lizards have the word iguana in their name, including the helmeted and casque-headed iguanas [more…]

Reading an Iguana's Body Language

Iguana communication is physical. Their words are formed by the arrangement of their body and body parts (posture), movements (stylized walking, strutting, bobbing), and use of three-dimensional space [more…]

Recognizing Common Iguana Injuries

An iguana can be injured several ways. Sometimes the injury is obvious; sometimes it's not. When the injuries are minor, you can often treat the injury yourself, but knowing whether an injury is minor [more…]

Giving an Iguana a Bath

Unlike mammals and birds, iguanas don't clean or groom themselves. Iguanas in the wild seem to rely on brushing against rough bark and plunging into bodies of water to remove the grime and parasites that [more…]

Feeding Your Pet Amphibian or Reptile

In the wild, reptiles and amphibians (collectively known as herps) tend to be wanderers, moving about during their active time. (Some herps are active at day, some at dawn and/or at dusk, and others during [more…]

Monitoring Your Turtle's or Tortoise's Health

As your turtle's or tortoise's caretaker, you are ultimately responsible for its good health. You aren't able to hear directly from your turtle or tortoise when it is unwell or has been hurt. In fact, [more…]

Choosing a Veterinarian for Your Pet

You and your veterinarian work together to keep your pet healthy, and you want to have a good working relationship. Choosing a reputable veterinarian requires your time and attention. [more…]

Finding a Reptile or Amphibian That's Right for You

You have to use your own judgment in selecting your reptile or amphibian, no matter where you buy it. Choose one with bright eyes, an alert demeanor, and no visible injuries; and if you can see the animal [more…]

Knowing When to Bring Your Amphibian or Reptile to the Vet

Sometimes, being a herp owner seems to require more knowledge upfront than you might have. You can discover a lot, however, about what to expect from your herp by watching him as he feeds, sleeps, moves [more…]

Getting Acquainted with Amphibians

Collectively, reptiles and amphibians are referred to as herps. That term comes from the Greek word herpes,which literally means crawling things. The term is applied equally to reptiles and amphibians. [more…]

Words Related to Your Pet Turtle or Tortoise

Turtles and tortoises are not your run-of-the-mill pets, and if you choose to add a chelonian (a turtle or tortoise) to your family, you may want to broaden your vocabulary beyond what you need when talking [more…]

Records to Keep on Your Turtle or Tortoise

Keeping records on your turtle or tortoise is a necessity. Do you remember exactly when you bought your pet? When were those eggs laid? In addition, with so many species protected by law, you need to be [more…]

Turtles and Tortoises For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Your shelled pet may not have the warm fuzzies of more ordinary choices, but turtles and tortoises definitely have a cool factor that mammals can’t touch. As the owner of a turtle or tortoise, you enter [more…]

When to Take Your Iguana to a Veterinarian

Iguana owners will need to visit a reptile veterinarian for medical diagnosis and intervention in certain situations. Take your iguana to a see a veterinarian — no matter how experienced you are with iguanas [more…]

Essential Supplies for Your Iguana

Being completely ready before you bring home your iguana is essential, and a lot goes into creating the proper iguana home. To make things as stress-free as possible for you and the iguana make sure the [more…]

Minimum Iguana Enclosure Dimensions

Don't make the mistake of starting with an iguana enclosure that's too small - iguanas grow quickly. The following table shows you the minimum enclosure dimensions needed based on the average size in snout-vent [more…]

How to Give Your Iguana a Bath

Iguanas don't clean or groom themselves. Iguanas in the wild brush against rough bark and plunge into water to remove dirt and parasites. Because a captive iguana probably doesn't have bark to rub against [more…]

Iguanas For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Before you bring home your new pet iguana, purchase all the necessary supplies and equipment, and make sure the enclosure is roomy enough for your iguana’s size. Daily baths are part of iguana care, so [more…]

Typical Life Spans for Pet Reptiles and Amphibians

Some pet reptiles and amphibians are long-lived — you might need to provide for them in your will! Here are a few average life spans for some typical pet reptiles and amphibians: [more…]

Factors to Consider before Buying a Reptile or Amphibian

Do your homework before buying a reptile or amphibian. Consider the following: Do you have the time and money to feed and care for it? Do you have allergies? Reptiles and amphibians are low-risk, allergy-wise [more…]

What to Feed Reptiles and Amphibians

Before you bring home a reptile or amphibian, consider the kind of food you're willing to feed it. The food preferences of reptiles and amphibians fall into three general groups: carnivores, herbivores [more…]

Reptiles & Amphibians For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Reptiles and amphibians make unique pets. They have few emotional demands, but they do have precise physical needs. And because pet reptiles and amphibians are in cages and can't seek food on their own [more…]

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