Monday, July 30, 2012

The dragon: a repetitive story

We're at it again. Since April, and therefore earlier than expected, the iguana has been in mating season. It started with a few signs, him being a tad more active, jumping at his reflection or reacting to my movements a bit more. It will gradually become harder to handle him, one wrong look and he jumps straight from his upper shelf at me, aiming at my face. Needless to say that I would probably need plastic surgery if that ever happens. So I'm on my guard all the time when dealing with him. Mature big male iguanas are dangerous animals when they are in season and it lasts a few months. So every time I approach him, I have to be careful. They can jump a meter or more with ease, especially if they are sitting on something they can push themselves off (a sofa, a chair, a table, a side board, a shelf). And they are incredibly fast when they attack. If I had carpet in my flat, I'd only be able to approach him in boots as he'd go for my flesh. An iguana of that size (almost 5 feet) would easily take a piece out of me. And it's painful, too, in addition to the infection that will follow. Now I'm an experienced iguana keeper and therefore know how to read him, but even then, I got bitten before. One careless moment and wham! you're bleeding.

Today, though, it was him who bled. Silly boy had jumped against the window (luckily, I had bubble wrap on it), due to me moving around the room. His aggressions become worse in the evenings and he reacts to anything or anyone going near the vivarium. And I wore white! Not one of his trigger colours. He jumped and must have bitten his tongue. Nothing to panic about, unless the bleeding doesn't stop within minutes. Normally, they will puncture their tongue with their razor sharp teeth, but it will heal quickly. It may swell a bit which will be uncomfortable for the animal, but there's not much I can do. He doesn't eat anyway, as usual in season. But I felt a bit sorry for him. Of course he blames me for his pain, which doesn't make it easier for me to deal with him.

Compared to last year, though, I'm pretty happy so far. He is difficult, but less aggressive. Of course, I can't just go inside the vivarium and clean it. I have to remove him first or I'll have a massacre in my flat and I wouldn't look too good coming out of it. I would never recommend to walk into an aggressive iguana's enclosure unless the person wears protective gear and that means a hat, long (thick material) sleeves, long trousers and gloves. They may seem like they are just sitting there dozing, but they can switch to an attack with a blink of an eye. 

Never mind. I still love him to bits. Sprayed him with the pressure sprayer and 'cleaned' his mouth with it, so everything will be good.

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