In terms of its common appearance, consider the following:
• The skin should be firm, clear, clean, and free of bites and scratches. (Bites and scratches might get infected later on.)
• The stomach should be free of burns. (Burns may eventually heal, but the skin would always be very sensitive to heat.)
• The stomach has no ground-in stool. (A dirty stomach indicates that the animal is living in an unhygienic environment which can make it sick and weak.)
• The opening is free of dried stool and urine. (The presence of these shows that the lizard might have parasites and protozoa in its stomach.)
• The iguana resists strongly when its body parts are moved. (Weakness and instability may be a sign that the lizard is injured or suffering from calcium insufficiency.)
• The limbs, tail, and the whole body have no lumps, bumps, or swelling. (Cysts, infections, and fractures need veterinary treatment.)
• The rear legs and thighs are shaped normally. (A swollen leg may indicate a fracture; two legs or thighs, an insufficient supply of calcium.)
• The limbs are sturdy and full while the body is smooth and vibrant looking. (If the limbs are very thin, the lizard may be starving or dehydrated. If the body looks wrinkled and dull, there may be bacterial or parasite infections.)
For its head, eyes, ears, nose, and mouth, you may take note of the following:
• The eyes should be clear. (If they are bleary, crusted, or weepy, there might be an infection in the respiratory system or inflammation of the eyes.)
• The nose has no dried or wet mucus. (Dried or bubbly mucus is an indication of infection in the respiratory system.)
• The insides of the mouth should look healthy. (Infections would cause rotting of the insides of the mouth.)
• The jaw is not swollen. (If it is, then, the animal might have a metabolic disease.)
• There are no swellings or lumps on its face, dewlap, or neck. (Swellings may indicate abscesses.)
In terms of behavior, observe the following:
• A healthy baby would try to get away.
• An unresponsive iguana in your hands may be extremely ill.
These are just some of the things you have to look out for when buying a pet iguana.
Now that you know how to spot a healthy iguana and you have already spotted a healthy one, you leave the store with a smile on your face. It will not be an easy job to raise your newly bought iguana, but it is sure worth a try.