Iggy Has Been Adopted!!

Sunday, June 2, 2013
It is with a heavy heart (still, after a few months!) I am finally writing to say Iggy was adopted out. My sweet and gentle lizard is now living happily in a new home up in Connecticut. I struggled with this decision for about 5 months before I finally realized what I had to do for my family and for Iggy's happiness and well being.

My human daughter was around 2 years old (she's 2.5 now, wow!) and she nearly stepped on Iggy. I had a flash of how bad this could be if repeated. As I've mentioned in earlier posts, we live in a converted 1.5 car garage so it's a VERY small space. Having Iggy here was difficult but I tried to make it work. Her new enclosure we a tight squeeze for her and she was having extreme difficulties coming down the narrow ramp to use her potty.

I was running around trying to get out the door to story time and Iggy would decide it was time to poop. I'd have to break out the tub, fill it, struggle to get her out, get scratched up in the process....then wait, clean up, and while my daughter is "loving" on Iggy. It was so hectic.

I kept making excuses thinking we would be moving out of here to a home soon. But fast forward to now, Iggy is adopted out and bam! my husband is in the middle of a health crisis and job change. We aren't moving that soon. :(

So, I put some ads out there and had a few interested parties. Finally, I decided on one family and the nice man and his son came down to get Iggy. They were gentle with her and patient. I was a nervous wreck; thinking about how difficult it might be for Iggy to transition out of here. But... it seems like she was fine. And now, better than fine! I have received updates and pictures and she is happily living with a window view and able to roam when she needs to. Not to mention an awesome enclosure!!

I really loved and still love her. My daughter always asks about her and plays with her toy iguanas. It makes me sad still but I am glad I could spend so many years with her. In the future, waaaay future, I'd love to return the favor and adopt another iguana provided I have the room! They are such awesome pets but they do require A LOT of time, patience and research to give them the best.
Last shot of her sleeping, my baby

Bananas

Fancy pictures

Nanny and Poppy came to see Iggy off

My daughter kissing Iggy goodbye

Good Luck Iggy, we love you!

Free Roaming Iguanas and Children: Yay or Nay?

Tuesday, October 16, 2012
Our little family has taken the "small living" plunge; aka, we don't want to pay big bucks for renting so we decided to convert my mother-in-law's garage into our new home. It's a huge task and is actually saving us a ton of money (although, it sure doesn't seem like it right now!) But this tiny home for our family of 3 plus iguana is really giving me a lack-of-space induced headache. Where will Iggy go?!

We can keep her in the cage but her 4'x3'x5'enclosure takes up a huge chunk of our only living room space. It's a combined kitchen, eat-in-area (ie tiny spot for table) and living/play room plus a separate bedroom. Unfortunately, I cannot keep it in the bedroom because my daughter naps and sleeps early in there. So, free roaming may be in our future. The whole space is about 460 sq feet or so.

Luckily, loft construction, within the living room side, will take place a couple weeks from now and this is also another option for Iggy, though my lovely fiance will be bunking with her some nights when he arrives late from work. He doesn't mind. But what about POOP!?

Iggy is trained to use a plastic tub in the bottom of her enclosure. I am hoping, soooo very much so, that she will transition to using it on the floor. I was nervous thinking about a toddler + iguana + open tub of water + salmonella possibilities but then it dawned on me-- keep the tub dry in the laundry area (separate room!) and when Iggy comes down to do her business I'll just bust it out, fill it up and let her go at it. Then I can dispose of in the toilet like I normally do. Sounds good in theory. I imagine we will have some accidents.

I'm a bit nervous about how the kitchen is open, as well. Iggy is 4.5 years old now and slowing down in her increasing age. I would never free roam with an iguana younger than say, 3 or so, because I can imagine all sorts of hiding spots and accidents. But am I wrong to think maybe Iggy will just want to lounge and look out the window; keep to herself and enjoy some bananas?

The other "option" is to give her away to a VERY responsible, loving, awesome reptile owner (are they out there?) It is like a knife to the gut thinking about this. My daughter will be 2 in December and she is actually very respectful of animals and ADORES Iggy but she can keep her distance. Honestly, I *do* trust Iggy with my daughter more than any dog or cat (actually, my mom's dogs who I assumed to be the safest bet around Delphine ended up actually BITING her face after she tried to hug the yorkie, err.)

Anyway, I think we will give free roaming a go. I imagine Iggy will have a difficult time transitioning from her enclosure. She's been in that since we moved to Chicago in June 2009. And it's upsetting that the humidity will probably be much less than ideal but I plan on operating a humidifier for the room. It's either that sacrifice or find an adoptive family for her. Which is better for Iggy? This takes some deep soul searching.  The part that really sucks is in April we were going to purchase a lovely 1950's ranch with 3 bedrooms and one of them would have been solely devoted to Iggy. I tried!!

Any thoughts?!

Iguana Spike Problems: Shedding, Humidity and Mineral Oil

Tuesday, March 20, 2012
Iggy was having some major problems shedding her spike shed. It's basically all I've been talking about in the iguana community. I've been trying to pick people's brains for tricks to end this frustrating problem. Luckily, I caught it with only 1 shed cycle but,there are quite a few spikes that have completely broken off. The good news is that mineral oil definitely does help stubborn shed, no doubt about it! I tried it before but without much patience.

Here's exactly what I have been doing to ease off the stuck spike shed (so far I have taken off 12, with still more to go!)
1. Increase humidity in your iguana's enclosure.
2. Spray her and her enclosure like a mad woman (or man)! I try and spritz her with water 5+ times a day along with the humidifier.
3. Increase your iguana's moisture rich food. I picked up a bag of grapes, she hasn't had them in so long (but don't give too many because they higher in sugar) Also, give water soaked wheat bread.
4. Tub soaks, 5-15 minutes is all Iggy will currently tolerate, and then take a few drops of mineral oil per spike and rub it in. It was suggested to me by a very wise iguana owner named Susan D. from the Green Iguana Society forum to use a wash cloth and gently rub. The friction will often sort of release the seal that is causing the shed to stick. The key is getting moisture up in the spike. If you are comfortable enough, you may use your nail as well. I definitely use my nails but I always listen to Iggy's body language and back off if she's getting irked.
5. Rub mineral oil onto the problem shed 1-2x a day after misting your iguana.

This should work but remember it takes time. When I first set out to do this, I gave up after 1 day of no results. Now I am pleased to have released 6 spike sheds upon first attempt and 6 more with quite a few more to go. 

I wanted to mention Shed-Ease or Shed-Aid products. Someone suggested that we use these products and in my desperation I ordered a bottle. Then I googled the ingredients and they are mostly just water! Quickly I canceled the order. One of the other ingredients is a very small amount of aloe vera which reminded me of Chicago, when Iggy was a wee lass, I was using aloe vera on her spikes and other shed areas. I had good luck with it and I think I will try it again! 

Site Improvements

Wednesday, February 15, 2012
I am very pleased to announce that the Igg-Girl blog will be having facelift. Not only will the blog be transformed but the star herself, Iggy, will be getting some much needed extra attention. Hopefully redecorating her enclosure, new lighting and hopefully, most importantly, tackle her spike shed problem!

I will be starting a twitter and using my iPhone to update posts. Because I am so busy now this will make it much easier to keep up with comments, questions and updates.

Stay tuned!


Iggy Is Getting So Big!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011
I can't believe how big Iggy is and yet she still seems like the same "little girl" she used to be. Much like my own (human) daughter, who will be turning 1 year old soon. Time flies and boy do these kids grow fast, iguanas included!

Igg still seems very content in her enclosure, which is surprising because she is looking a bit cramped. We are moving out of this (very tiny) apartment come May 2012 and hope to be in a bigger space. But I don't think Iggy will care much even if we allow her to free roam or give her a room. It never fails, we let her tub soak or explore and 10 minutes later Miss Lizard is heading back to her "home."

It is absolutely adorable how much my daughter loves Iggy already. She is OBSESSED with getting into her enclosure, which is "no-no" unfortunately. Iggy handles everything very well and allows my daughter to pet her. Luckily, she is very gentle and never smacks, grabs or does anything jerky around Iggy.

I took some pictures with my shnazzy iPhone (as much as I am a computer geek, I'm really not tech savvy and only recently got an iPhone ha ha). I'll post them for you all to enjoy.

Whenever I got your e-mails I am very happy. It breaks up my days, which although I love them are often dishes, diapers and cleaning the floor he he, but it does bring me back to my pre-baby days. I try to answer everyone and with the best advice I can. Some day soon (yeah right) I will have more time to get as serious as I set out to be with this blog.

 Iggy found my bedroom window, but the poor girl is too plump to fit on the ledge!

  Inspecting.

 There's my little squirt...and the big squirt and the spiky squirt, ha ha

 Instagram edit

Instagram edit, again. It's pretty funny remembering the conversation I had with B about whether or not we should take Iggy away from my brother in 2009. I was so nervous he would say no, but I told him as soon as he got to know Iggy he would love her. And he certainly does.