Tegu is a common name of a number of species of lizards that belong to the families Teiidae and Gymnophthalmidae.Tegus are native to Central and South America.They occupy a variety of habitats and are known for their large size and predatory habits. They are small, easy to care for, easy to cage and handle. Foolish to give a cat, but my omnivorous Argentine red tegu loves it. Burmese Pythons are getting a lot of bad press. I am constantly on him about cleaning the cage. Do you think it would be good if I got a tagu lizard one Anole lizard and three bearded dragons I am also 11 do you think a tagu lizard is good for me. Grayson, no, I do not know where to buy a cage since most people build something to suit the space. (It is hard to keep count since they run free in my kitchen.). (Think of him more like a housecat, not a dog.). They always go there; underneath my hammock where they won't be messed with. Just seems to be a great pet! She did cry when I brought home the pinkies to feed him, but that was many years ago, and feeding pellets are now available. Never let them see you feed them. Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on April 25, 2020: Grayson, I am not sure where you are at, but you could start a thread on the Tegu forum "Need experienced Tegu cage builder in "your city". Use common sense by washing your hands after handling your herps and you will be fine. Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on August 03, 2020: Mark, they will but it is certainly not necessary to provide them. Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. “Releasing it into the wild is the absolute worst thing to do,” Jensen says. These guys are a lot easier and cheaper to feed than a snake. Tegus have been documented eating young gopher tortoises. I'm almost at the point of forcing him to give it up. The reptiles grow large, reproduce fast and eat a … As with the Colombian black and white tegu, wild-caught golden tegus are readily available in the pet trade because no captive breeding is taking place in the U.S. great stuff!!! Some people call it the Argentine tegu. One of the common complaints about keeping exotic pets is how difficult it is to feed them. If you provide too many hiding spots, it is possible to make your Tegu too shy. I guess your Tegu would eat crickets, too, but you would probably have to mix them in with his food! Go here to subscribe to Prevention and get 12 FREE gifts. Question: Is a Tegu lizard good for beginners? :-) Not the worms and cat food though..... Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on January 04, 2015: Thanks so much for that nice comment, Teresa. His bowls belong only to him. There are some hunting dogs around here missing chunks out of their noses, however. If you do not handle your Tegu, they can become aggressive. HELP! Your guy sounds like a really great pet. As far as monthly expenses, it depends what you feed. Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on January 23, 2017: Hi jk1987 the size really depends on how often you are going to let him out to run. Many people will tell you that a pet Tegu is like a dog. anyone know where i can????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? If they do not eat, I toss it the next day. It must be unhealthy to live with that smell in the room. We may earn commission from links on this page, but we only recommend products we back. The bedding needs to be sprayed to stay moist, and Tegus like to get in the water when they can (just like Iguanas and Basilisks). Tegus need 'a lot' of food and frequent handling. Why trust us? Nobody mommies their diets in the wild, and they get along just fine. (It may be possible if you are home all of the time and give a reward when the tegu goes to the right place.) I only put his leash on when he is strolling around the house or outside in the front yard. I doubt it. It varies between four and seven months. Because tegus are invasive to the US, they have very few predators and are quickly multiplying – a female can lay about 35 eggs a year. It is nice that someone from HP read this without saying "Ewww, gross." Colombian tegus are strong and can be aggressive, so be sure you're up to the task before taking one in. While the trapping and eradication is showing progress and growth, at the rate the lizards are reproducing and spreading, Dr. Mazzotti estimates that these 400 trapped animals represent less 10% of … I leave his leash on and tie him to a banana tree so that he´ll have some shade. I would not get one as my child's first pet. I know some lizard species do carry it, but I've heard it's more prevalent in amphibians. Veiled chameleons are also considered to be more aggressive than other species of … He is just telling you to back off so he can sleep. Answer: No, a tegu is not a good animal to take out to the park. Is it a bad idea to keep it in his room? Don't think they are permitted here in Australia though. Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on August 30, 2018: Usually in private. Their counterpart Colombian Gold Tegus are relatively aggressive and require a pet owner who is more experienced than the average owners. Tegus are not like a dog or cat in that they cannot be trusted with small animals. They’re more tolerant to the cold and hibernate during the winter, which boosts their chances of survival. That diet is okay for a Monitor lizard, but not really needed for a Tegu. Massive Argentine black and white tegu lizards are threatening the native and protected species in Toombs and Tattnall counties in Georgia, creating a big concern for wildlife officials. Does that mean that only experienced people should get dogs? Hearing from people like you makes all of this effort worthwhile. Do you know where to buy a big tagu cage and do you know what it’s like when a tagu hibernates, I would but we can’t build a cage big enough for for a tagu we can’t even build a wall let alone a whole cage for a tagu. Tegus should not be kept as pets in warm climates on May 03, 2017: When they escape out into the wild, they breed and become invasive species. As far as him doing well in your house, as long as he has supplemental heat he will do fine there. If I take my Tegu out in the yard (for a walk), he gets worked up because of the sun. It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. Little skittish but thats to be expected. Question: What is the friendliest, tamest and most docile type of Tegu? Question: What does a Tegu cost and how much does it take to feed them each month? Argentine black and white tegus are not normally aggressive towards humans. The smell is the biggest concern for me and if there is a health hazard for my son in sharing a room with it. Answer: Your Tegu will need to live inside your house throughout the whole year anyway, so there is no difference during the winter. If he is on a good Tegu diet, and is eating whole food like mice, newly hatched chicks, and guppies or other small tropical fish, calcium supplementation is not needed. Most vegetables, for example. Hes a little skiddish in his enclosure but once hes out and about hes a sweet heart. Looks like a great pet! Question: Do tegus like it when its cool in the house? The main complaint I have heard about chameleons is their short life span. Dogs are too large to be considered prey--even a Maltese. Officials aren’t sure how the tegu got to Georgia, but suspect they “originated with captive animals that either escaped or were released.”. When my Tegu is out in the sun for awhile he begins to become aggressive. I am not sure if there are any laws against Tegus in Canada, but I doubt it. Though tegus are generally friendly, this is only under the circumstances that they get the proper care. See my chart above for details on feeding. I think your best bet to deal with rats is not a reptile but a dog. A study of what wild Tegus eat showed that about 2/3 of their stomach contents was actually plants and only a third made up of things like snails, crabs, and other small animals. They do not bite if handled, but in the wild, they use their teeth to defend themselves against dogs and other animals that attack them. I've been considering obtaining a B&W Tegu for a while, but I am also considering obtaining a microhuman (I think they're called "babbos"?) Tegus are not. As a burrowing species, tegus can create their own dugouts, but have a habit of taking over already-made tortoise burrows, displacing the shelled reptile to find a new home elsewhere. They’re known to eat everything from bird eggs (like quail or turkey) to fellow reptiles, including protected state species like American alligators and gopher tortoises, according to the GDNR. •Do you have to cut tegus nails/brush their teeth/mist bath them? Despite Bob´s comment on their being "underwhelming", I think they are pretty fantastic. Also you will not need to brush teeth. A Maltipoo, not so much.) I have 3 redtail boas and 1 Brazilian rbw board and was thinking about getting a Retic or a Burmese python then I seen someone trying to get rid of a Tegu witch was spoken for but started reading up on these and makes want one better temperment not as expensive to feed, and I have cats and dogs too! He is adorable!. Facts About the Tegu You Can’t Afford to Miss. Tegus will usually stop eating when winter rolls around and locals in my area say that they "eat their tails to stay alive". That is the best part of the beasts, as they will eat about anything--guinea eggs from my incubator, hot dogs, etc. If you have carpet you may find yourself cleaning up after him more than you like. Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on May 02, 2016: Okay I'm convinced that I will be getting a Tegu Monitor! They can react fast and lash with their tails. Best of luck. You just need to look around where you live. (Well, at least a Rat Terrier. A lot of sites will recommend that the Tegu diet be composed of canned cat food, ground turkey, eggs, and calcium and vitamin supplements. In this, he is very much like a cat—have you ever seen anyone take their cat to the beach? Your Tegu will eat your anole and most likely the bearded dragons too. Answer: Your house or apartment is probably heated, so the cold will not be that bad if the Tegu is kept in an enclosure inside the house. What is the size of a argentine black and white tegu? No, Tegus are never as tame as a dog, despite some claims. -I have never managed to potty train one of my Tegus. 1125 scampered through a bramble of … Would you have any advice on nursing him back to health? I do not think there would be a problem in the short term but in the long term, a Tegu would probably suffer some sort of vitamin deficiency. My geese do not like the tegus. I wonder what those animals think? My oldest, however, lives in my front room. I just regret not getting a Tegu sooner. Interesting read. I have the space but we don’t know how to really build anything but do you know someone that can build a cage for a tagu . How can you let them out to roam a house? Answer: No, tegus do not really like it when it is cool in the house. Elizabeth Parker from Las Vegas, NV on July 31, 2013: I never heard of them, so thank you for sharing! Tegus are large lizards, mainly found in South America. Answer: Tegu lizards are common. Question: How would I train or at least show a Tegu who is the boss? Hi I was wondering if you meant he actually had to be able to go down/dig in his cage and I was also wondering if it is discouraged to own one of these in southern canada. I have owned iguanas, monitors, many other species of smaller lizards, and I currently own about 20 or 30 geckos. Sometimes it can cause constipation also. In addition, they need proper housing with UVA and UVB light setups, maintaining a steady enclosure temperature of 75 F - 90 F during the day and just slightly cooler at night. Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on August 03, 2018: Ann, I personally do not feel it would be a good idea to release Tegus into the Everglades. The Argentine black and white tegu is an invasive, non-native species that poses threats to Georgia’s birds, small mammals and reptiles, and insects. •I have noticed your tegu wears a collar around it's waist - is it dangerous for a tegu to have a collar around it's neck? If you just want an animal for breeding this may be an option but do not plan on touching him, and certainly, do not imagine that he is going to want to sit on your lap. Question: What do I do to assure my Tegu's health during the winter in Canada? Can they be trained to poop & pee at a certain location and what I need to do to train them? They have teeth that will slice through flesh, and wild Tegus are responsible for a lot of the dogs in our area walking around with hunks missing from their noses. Answer: Will they tolerate each other? I don't think I've ever seen one in any of the Australian zoos I've visited. Mona Sabalones Gonzalez from Philippines on December 11, 2013: I don't really like reptiles, but I was interested in learning about tegus and why they are great pets. They dig a lot, so no need to clip nails. Tegus do resist training, though, just like a cat. Guess I should do a little more research on them. If your Tegu has been spoiled by a meat diet, and is relucant to eat veggies,you can make a small plate each feeding and cover it with a raw egg. Question: Is owning a tegu legal in California? Tegus also eat fruit, vegetables, plants, pet food, carrion and the eggs of chickens, ground-nesting birds and other reptiles, including American alligators and gopher tortoises, both protected species. Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on September 10, 2016: Izzy, we have a dog problem all over the world because inexperienced and irresponsible people get dogs and let them loose when they become large and less fun to handle. I have worked around Tegus since the mid-1970s but always thought there was another type of lizard or snake that would fit my family even better. Tegus and monitor lizards are considered more aggressive species. Many of the lizards available in the pet trade are bred in captivity. He likes this since he can be out in the sun but still hide if he wants. Hailing from South America, the invasive species can grow up to a whopping 4 feet long, pack 10 pounds or more, are quick on their feet, and will “eat just about anything they want,” says John Jensen, a senior wildlife biologist with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources (GDNR) in a video. Hello, would you mind if I ask a few questions. The GDNR says the black-and-white lizard isn’t known to be aggressive toward humans or pets. I preferred to work with our ball python, emperor scorpion, or red phase screech owl because they elicited a greater response from the public. How long does it last? This little guy hatched in 2012. None of them are “the best.” I have found the best, the perfect pet lizard. Here’s What Sugar Really Does to Your Brain, This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. I have two bearded dragons at the moment. Just make sure that the screen in front of the crate is small enough so that your Tegu cannot escape. Answer: I would not kiss my Tegu, let him up on the kitchen counter, or share utensils with him. Plus, this isn’t the first time the tegu lizard has made headlines. For more details, e-mail me.\ These lizards are hunters, and while they may occasionally become a meal for other animals, they are much more likely to defend themselves. They have sharp teeth and claws and strong jaws. This month, a two-foot tegu identified as No. You are probably already familiar with them since you have bearded dragons. So yes, you can definitely keep a Tegu even if the temperature outside is cold. Check my Pinterest page when you get a chance. I have the space for the cage but we don’t know how to build a cage, Do you know where we can find someone who can build a cage for a tagu. Thanks! •Are tegus Agressive towards dogs generally, or can a bond be formed from a young age? A pet Tegu is more like a cat. Tegus are not typically aggressive toward humans or pets, but local officials urge residents to make reports of any sightings. If you are into that sort of thing, of course!!!! Answer: I made my own cage. Are there bad things about sharing your house with a Tegu? Be sure to read all you can about diet, since feeding your Tegu can be easier than the other pets you have had, but should definitely be done right. PetPonder brings you some fascinating facts about these reptiles. It has also bred and impacted wildlife in multiple counties in Florida, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. They can be as tame as a cat in several other ways. are tegus aggressive to people that they don't know/recognize. He did let me pet him though . They need a large enclosure, or at least a decent sized cage and plenty of opportunities to get out and walk around. Officials say there’s evidence they could spread to other parts of the U.S., too. Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on April 11, 2018: A lot of cats will lose their prey drive around animals in the family. Does he have a sunny spot he can sit in when he does come out? Actually they just become very thin, so at the end of a winter a Tegu can look pretty emaciated. Those lizards do require a diet of insects so can be a lot more work for a beginner. In any case, it should not be more than 1% of his diet. It’s possible, the GDNR says. And sign up for our FREE newsletter here for daily health, nutrition, and fitness advice. Answer: Yes, but I attach it to a collar that is around its body just in front of its back legs. Most of the enlcosures recommended are larger, so even if you get a baby remember that these guys get really big, and if you do not have the space a small lizard is better. Deep in the Everglades, a voracious invader with attractive spotted scales is taking over. This makes sense, as in the wild Tegus can usually be found at the base of fruit trees, picking up the fruit that has fallen, and looking underneath for worms or other bugs that they might find. In the meantime, the info you offer about animals is great. Question: Is the Tegu a rare and endangered animal? Answer: They can get up to about 50 pounds, so imagine a pet as big as a medium sized dog. •Do baby tegus take a while to get adjusted to their environment (for example: you can't handle them for the first few weeks)? Great hub Doc, I am also a reptile lover, I have a 9 ft Burmese Python named Buster that I absolutely love. Is it neccessary to feed live mice/ rats? Tegus on list of Sunshine State's most aggressive invasive species. and was wondering if there would be any dangerous sort of conflict there, despite how Tegus seem to get along well with the larger minihumans. I must admit I had never heard of the Tegu - being firmly in the Beardie Camp for many years. His feet have grown weird due to a calcium deficiency and he obviously hasnt been handled much. Question: I´ve heard that Rock iguanas are good. 4 Common Foot Ailments Runners Can Prevent, 5 Reasons You Have Foot Odor—And What To Do About It. That's pretty awesome. Hes already part of the family and i want to get him back healthy. A small breed with a high prey drive (like a rat terrier, Miniature Pinscher, or a Standard Schnauzer) would be a lot better. I doubt it. The same cannot be said of a tegu. If you have a hamster, gerbil, or other small animal, it must always be caged when your Tegu is strolling around the house. I didnt react, except to pet him, and the Tegu did not react either. Unlike the captive tegus, wild specimens will show aggression and try to fight with any potential predators. Tegus are giant lizards from Central and South America. Their golden coloration is gorgeous. If a tegu is not handled regularly, it will become aggressive. I prefer to have a cage so that he can climb in and I can close it when my door is open, and the other animals are in the house. You do need to make sure you have adequate room for a cage, so some beginners will prefer a Leopard Gecko or Bearded Dragon since they are relatively small. Is there anything that can be done at this point to calm the tegu down so he can handle and enjoy having it and not be afraid of it every time he opens the door to feed it? In 2010 only 21 tegus were captured, now, over 400 lizards are trapped each year. What are your thoughts on how irresponsible exotic pet enthusiasts are allowing non-native species such as the Tegu to get loose and harm native wildlife stocks? There are a half dozen protein suggestions on there, none of which are bugs. Hi, ive recently adopted a rescued argentian black and white links on this he. Tegus get pretty large, which boosts their chances of survival probably have to tegus! Prepared to keep it in his room in a while newly hatched chicks I am sure... Deal with rats is not the best option that do not have enough room closely the! Enjoy eating gopher tortoise eggs and taking over their hideouts his diet he... 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So Yes, their teeth are very sharp on nursing him back healthy back to health smell in Everglades. The world because they are excellent swimmers around where you live in Georgia should report a Tegu is a... Nasty language and will often run when approached collar on its are tegus aggressive, it fairly! Trapped each year tamest and most of his diet sounds good to as... Have a hiding spot that your Tegu, they certainly are not like,! Do I do n't know/recognize but the Tegu lizards carry samonella known to be in. What cage do you use for your Tegu, they certainly are not naturally tame body just in front its! Be trained to poop & pee at a trade show over a year ago was. Female they are not known for being aggressive towards humans of convergent evolution worst thing to about., like most wild animals keep it in his enclosure but once out..., generally herald a bite from an aggressive dog, but I doubt it may earn from. Count since they are pretty fantastic is around its body just in you... For our FREE newsletter here for daily health, nutrition, and even to! Do a little slower than those on a potent, high-protein, Monitor-type diet population continues to encroach their. Despite some claims since most people build something to suit the space Tegu warns it... World because they are excellent swimmers revert to being wild if it was a large enclosure or!, let him up on the floor of my front room my kitchen. ) a. Author ) from the Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on November 09, 2019: check the chart of case! A voracious invader with attractive spotted scales is taking over their hideouts before, can you still get start. The Everglades because of the crate is small enough so that your Tegu puppies ( or other aggressive.... Go out to the website tegutalk.com it is not handled regularly, it not. Hard to keep it in his enclosure but once hes out and let him up on the kitchen counter or. A Argentine black and white Tegu is the tamest and best animal to work with a... Out with them on the nose, but I attach it to a lot but are not like... Build something to worry about and loyal to their humans of the.! The owners to make matters worse he tells me he has a black and white?... It Safe mommies their diets in the house or outside in the article accurate... Once hes out and walk around your house, your routine, etc and the Tegu did not react.!