Post by Thunder380Lady on Mar 24, 2004 13:51:49 GMT -8
I have read some very interesting posts from a few of you about educating the public about owning Iguanas. I know I am no expert myself, because I have been asking you all a ton of questions about them myself. Lenore is not the first Ig I have had. My mom bought me one when I was much younger. All I can remember about it was that I don't think it lived long. Probably because way back then there was no education on them like there is today. I can say that I have had experience with alot of different animals, and whenever I can I try to tell people that are thinking about getting a pet, even a dog or a cat, what is involved with ownership of the pet. Education is so important with any animal because there are so many that get adopted then dumped for one reason or another.(Thats how I got alot of my pets.) When I adopt an animal it is for life, no matter what. Right now I have 16 pets, plus 20 fish. I try to tell people that ask about them, the pros and cons of owning each one of them. But anyway, my thought with this post was to say that education should come with every potential pet. More especially with Igs and other exotics.
That's exactly right Karen! It saddens me that humans are not more responsible. So many pets are purchased on impulse and then discarded as though they have no importance in this world. It's wonderful to hear of other people who accept responsibility for their pets and make that lifelong commitment. Kudos to all who do!
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Post by prism_wolf on Mar 24, 2004 15:34:25 GMT -8
Hey Karen. Educating is really where I get my greatest satisfaction...besides keeping my guys happy and healthy.
Every time you, Tesa, Dom, Lyn, Des, me and everyone else who has made some kind of commitment to not just take these animals into our homes, but educate others as well, it comes back tenfold when you here someone say..."Hey, thanks for helping me out. You may have saved my _____'s life."
Particularly with Igs, the situation is unique. They are little, cute and cheap. They grow big, mean and expensive.
My goal is to educate anyone and everyone who even sees an Iguana, in proper care and what to expect. I believe my work at my sons school is the most important because my focus is on why they are NOT good pets. I think the kids walk away with a better idea of what they want in a pet and an Iguana is not it. Once, I made a little certificate that awarded the kids for "learning about Iguanas" and commiting to waiting until they were old enough to get one.
Post by Thunder380Lady on Mar 24, 2004 17:01:41 GMT -8
When you tell people the reasons Iguanas DON'T make good pets, what do you say to them when they say well why do you have one then? I get asked this question alot about my Ig and my pig, and my large parrots.
Post by prism_wolf on Mar 24, 2004 19:05:34 GMT -8
I also stress why igs are NOT good pets...and I'll tell you what I've said to the question why I have one.
Zair was a gift for my daughter...and if I knew how much work he would have been before I got him...I would not have looked a second time.
I have been asked why I do rescue then if Zair was so difficult. Because I know more now and can take on the expense to a point, but I also must know my limitations. Igs...especially sick ones can put quite a drain on finances.
About 5 years ago I was a "stupid human" and saw this cute looking little green lizard in the pet store and purchased it. Once I started researching care I found out what I was in for and was quite shocked. I'm just trying to help people understand so that they can make informed decisions and not "stupid human" ones, like I did.
Iguanas are special creatures and require a long term and expensive commitment. If after knowing all of this, and their proper care requirements, you decide to still get one, then I say good for you and the best of luck with your new green friend.
Post by SurvivorSteph on Mar 25, 2004 23:41:26 GMT -8
My son wanted an iguana when he was 14, so I told him that he'd have to research how to take care of them, what they eat, etc.... We went to the pet store and bought a book (not Hatfield's or Kaplan's), it was "moderately adequate," and gave us an idea of what to expect.
As a parent, I made sure to read all I could because I knew that Alex would soon lose interest (darn teenagers) and that I'd be the one caring for the iguana.
We all know that hindsight is 20/20, and as prepared as I thought I was... I wasn't! That's why I want to help educate the IGnorant public.
Right now I'm working on a brochure specifically geared for kids, but one that will also help parents realize that there's a lot more than buying a baby, tossing it into a 20 gallon aquarium, and feeding it crickets.
I'm calling it: Iguanas are great pets... but not for everyone. I feel like the public needs to understand how awesome igs really are, but that not everyone is able/equipped/willing to give them proper care.
<I feel like climbing down from the soap box now... besides, I'm just preaching to the choir anyway!>
Post by crazymonkey21 on Mar 26, 2004 8:35:25 GMT -8
I also want to educate the public on how iggys do not make good pets for everyone. A lot of people really dont know what goes into their housing and diet. Which is partially why we are having a hard time finiding a home for our foster Hercules. I am very pick about my reptiles and the way they live. I was wondering where everyone goes to educate the people. Is it just people who come over? Or an outting with ur iggy? I know Dom said he does to schools which is really good! I work at a zoo and am going to start going in (when the weather gets warmer) and bringing Grotto our biggest male on my days off to teach people how if propery cared for they can make great pets but when parents buy their kids this cute lil lizard when its a baby are they truely prepared for what is ahead of them. A lot of people think just because u put it in a lil cage and toss it some food every so often it will be your best friend which isnt the case. I cant tell you how many people come to my work thinking just because a monkey is in a cage it is tame and we go in and cuddle with it. We even had one person ask if their son could pet the hyena!!!! People definitly need to learn more about animals, expecially exotics! And I am making a point to do that. If any one has any tips or suggestions let me know!
"Be who you are and say how you feel cause those who mind dont matter and those who matter dont mind!" Dr Suess
Post by prism_wolf on Mar 26, 2004 17:16:10 GMT -8
Jess~ Try talking to a pet store manager and see if you could do a program on education at the pet store. Not only is it a good place for animal education, but suggest it's good PR for the store. Put an ad in the local paper. Many papers post upcoming community events for free.
Using the zoo is an awesome opportunity. Definitely use it to your advantage.
Go to schools gearing the education to the "cool pet" age stage...12-15 yrs old. Ask the teacher, principal and superintendent. Make sure it's ok with EVERYONE. Some schools are finicky about animals due to liability, but if you come in with a release of liability for them and issue permission slips for the kids that the parents need to sign (and have these ready to show if the school members ask) then your chances of school ig days can be fruitful.
I take Zok out to our local Petsmarts and have never had a problem with them, they say to bring your pets in with you so.......
I also take her to festivals and such that are outside in parks and street fairs. Most peoples interest in getting one seems to fade when they find out that at 4 ft she still isn't full grown! Particularly when they get a load of those claws! I also do my darndest to talk people outy of getting an iguana as a pet. I figure that if I can talk them out of it then they wouldn't have lasted anyway.
Same here Merlin. I hear "that's a big lizard!!" often and I always reply with ....nawww.....she's still a little thing. In Thrasher's case this leads to a discussion on how her growth is stunted due to improper care from her previous owner. works for me
Any time someone strange comes into my house, its always wow ( my 3 girls are near my front door) they are so huge and I just say well these are the small ones I own...and when they see the boys its just comical to see the looks on their faces...Most people have not seen "NORMAL" full grown igs....Its very intriguing to see a 4 1/2 ft almost 7 yr old 12 lb male lounging under his lights....and I whip his door open and give him a good pat to show he is a "puppy dog" lol....Lyn
Most people have not seen "NORMAL" full grown igs....Its very intriguing to see a 4 1/2 ft almost 7 yr old 12 lb male
Yes since most people's concept of an iguana is those "cute little green lizards". They really can't comprehend the size it is going to get,..if it survives the way they are usually treated!
One thing I like is that our local herp shop, even though they sell baby igs, has a sign on the tank that asks "Do you have a place to house a lizard that gets this big?" with an arrow stretching to 6 ft! At least they are honest about it!