Once you decide to get an Iguana pet, you have probably spent a lot of time surfing the internet for information on your exotic pet. If you have found good information on the care of Iguanas, you will know that this species needs a specific light and heat source in its terrarium.
Why It Needs Heat
Iguanas are cold blooded reptiles and their physiology needs a good external heat source since their bodies cannot stay at a constant temperature. All of their body functions depend on the environment that they are in and its current temperature. An Iguana's native environment is in warm tropical weather, so they need this type of environment to thrive. Although a permanent heat source may not be vital for their circulatory system, they depend on it for their digestive system. Iguanas without heat lamps can suffer from malnutrition because they cannot assimilate nutrients from their food. This can also cause health problems in the future.
The Reasons Why Light is so Important
In the Iguana's natural tropical habitat, they spend the majority of their daytime in the sunshine for two good reasons. One reason is because they need the heat as was discussed before. The other reason is that they need the light that comes from the sun. The UVB and UVA radiations can also be provided in an artificial environment too. These ultraviolet rays can help their bodies make vitamin D and properly process Calcium that they take in. Without this process, Iguanas would be calcium deficient. Eventually, they would receive bone injuries and catch diseases.
We Can Provide Iguanas with the Necessary Light and Heat
Here are some good ways that we can give our pet Iguanas the heat and light that they really need. Since not all pet owners live in a sunny environment year round, there can be many different choices. Direct sunlight is a great option if it is available. Sunlight that comes through glass or plastic is not effective because most of the ultraviolet rays will be filtered this way without reaching their destination. In a cold climate, owners can purchase UV lamps and heat lamps to give his or her pet the gift of warmth and light. This will allow the Iguanas to function at their best. A pet owner should always have a basking area for his or pet, and a shady area is important too. If the animal gets too hot, it should have a place to cool off. Since it is a cold blooded animal, it cannot cool itself off or raise its temperature either. An Iguana will alternate between sunbathing and retreating in the shadows to get cooled off. Pet owners will need a thermometer to keep track of its temperature to make sure that it does not go below 80 degrees Fahrenheit. This is the best way to keep your iguana happy and in good health. You want to try and keep your pet Iguana in a habitat that is as close as possible to its natural one.