Video:Is a Pet Lizard Right for You?with Amy Kelly
Lizards can make great pets, but keeping a pet lizard is more work than just putting it in an enclosure. Here are some things to keep in mind when deciding whether or not to buy a pet lizard.See Transcript
Transcript:Is a Pet Lizard Right for You?
Hi, I'm Amy Kelly, a pet expert who works with pets daily at a national chain. Today, we are going to talk about if a pet lizard is right for you, on About.com.
Considerations to Make for Pet Lizards
Is it easy to own a pet lizard? Well, it depends on the lizard you choose. There is quite a variety that you can go with. You can go with something like a bearded dragon, or a water dragon, or an anole. I would probably go with an anole if you're looking for the easiest. These little guys can be fed every other day. They do need heating and specific humidity, and this is going to be across the board for most lizards. So, just know what you are getting into. It's not going to be quite as easy as, say, putting a hamster in a cage. You do have to have specific heating requirements and lighting requirements, and humidity requirements. So you may have to spend a little bit of money up front. But you will see that the challenge is worth it in the end and the companionship can be a blast.
Temperament of Pet Lizards
Lizards can be great for kids, but do be aware that lizards do carry salmonella, and you will want to use antibacterial lotion, or anything of that nature. Their temperament varies, but they are easy to handle if you get something like a bearded dragon. They'll sit in your hand perfectly. Anoles are a little bit more squirrelly. So the main issue for kids will be the salmonella. Just make sure you keep it hygienic. Lizards can be great pets as far as their temperament. If you get a bearded dragon, they are very calm and most of the time they just want to bask and are very family friendly. Anoles, they do like to scamper away, not much of a personality. Water dragons are great and fun to watch from an early age, but can become territorial as they age. So just do your research and you will be ready with any sort of temperament issues.
Life Expectancy of Pet Lizards
As far as life expectancy, it varies from lizard to lizard. Anoles live to about 4 years, bearded dragons until about ten and water dragons until about 15. There are a lot of other lizards out there, so be sure to do your research, but you will have many years of fun. The feeding schedule will differ from lizard to lizard, but most of them are omnivores and insectivores, which means you are going to have to give them a lot of insects. So, if you're a little nervous around crickets, then they may not be the pet for you.
Feeding Pet Lizards
For bearded dragons, you would feed them a good diet of crickets and meal worms. Be sure to sprinkle a little calcium powder on them. They do have calcium deficiencies. Anoles can be feed every other day, not not as much of a time commitment, but be aware you will have to stock up on your crickets. Other options for a lizard's diet include leafy greens, vegetables and some fruits. And for certain species, when they get big enough, think about introducing rodents int their diets. In deciding if you want a pet lizard or not, be sure to look up all of the requirements for humidity, temperature, UVA and UVB lighting, by the way, those are very important things to know. It will all make for a much longer life, for your lizard.
To find out more about it a pet lizard is right for you, be sure to look us up at About.com