Summer travel to Reno! August 2017
Here we are in Reno again. I live with my friend Karla and it is so nice to have a roommate like her that calms my anxiety as she drives us to the airport. I am so thankful for her!
As you can imagine, it can be intense, traveling with an iguana, but after nearly 22 flights, Angel and I are pros at it now. It was a day flight vs an night flight, but she is so good at flying now. I believe she actually looks forward to it. S
he is getting so big, that I began to worry if she’ll fuss about getting into her 20×20 box, but this girl loves to cuddle in!I really believe that she knows when she gets in the box, she’ll somehow end up in her other home away from home.She doesn’t struggle or fight, she willingly snuggles in and curls up. She prefers the front bin A the best. When I pick her up there is no anxiety or tension. She just looks around, smells the air and allows the cargo crew to swoon over her and pet her.
In Reno she is a new lizard. She loves sleeping in the bunk bed over my head, and the 100 degree days that bless us in the summer. She is now trustworthy on the deck, relaxing on the lounge, viewing the yard and nature below. She loves that I am always home and relishes all the attention she gets!
But this time she had a major shed that made her quite irritable. When an iguana matures, it’s really important to not let them slip away from you, and by that I mean, get the upper hand and think they are the alpha. In Angel’s case of shedding, that is what she was acting like.
Reno has dry weather and humid weather is easier on them during a shed. I make up for this by showers and a rub of hair conditioner and baby oil on her. She dislikes water and must have had a bad experience in her life from someone hosing her down. I have to comfort her by holding her at times or covering her face from the water drops.
During this shed she displayed her “don’t touch me, leave me alone, get away from me” attitude.
I understand why, cuz I am consonantly rubbing off the shed and picking off a piece now and then. At the shelter, many of her spines fell off due to lack of blood supply cuz no one took the time to help her with her shed. It is important to pay attention to your iguana at shedding time, and especially during a full-body shed. They don’t shed like a snake, they shed little by little, the eyes being the most sensitive and bothersome. They are most appreciative of help and this is a great time to bond. You must be gentle and use a very soft, wet towel to soak the area and then gently rub it off. And I mean GENTLY!
During this time angel’s attitude had to be kept in check. A firm voice when she began to act up and acceptance on my part that there would be no lovey-dovey handling. She would want her ground, and I had to stay mine.
When an iguana gets older, you have to make sure that you maintain the alpha position. You can’t let this get away from you. I find the only way to stay close at this time it to remove her from her bed in the middle of the night and bring her to mine. I turn on the electric throw on low, make a well between 2 pillows and place her in it. She is quite fussy the first few nights and it is hard to get her settled back to sleep. But once she falls asleep, and wakes up near you, it changes everything.
The once fearful and scared and leave-me-alone attitude, is now calm and secure. It further demonstrates to her that there is nothing to fear, that I am her friend, that she is worthy of sleeping next to me, and allowing me control is not a bad thing.I reward her in the morning with a treat of whole wheat bread and a few grapes.
Her shed is nearly over now and she is a changed iguana again, sleeping peacefully next to me as I type up this blog to the world.