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Hobbes, Our Great Green Iguana


GreytHurleyDawg
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My DH and I had two green iguanas (our first pets together) before ever being owned by the greys. Hobbes, the female and the younger of the two, suffered a very bad fall inside her 6 foot tall cage last summer. She fell onto her back and could not right herself. She was unable to move either of her back legs and had to drag them. She also was unable to lift her posterior off the ground. We took her to the emergency vet and got x-rays but found no broken bones. Vet advised us to give her 3 months of cage rest. So, we took her cage apart and rebuilt it to be half as high for her protection. She was able to climb the minimal height after a few weeks and bask on the upper platform herself. Often, we would find her on her back after trying to get down and losing her grip. Months went by and her back leg muscles atrophied to nothing.

 

Hobbes was the wildest little girl anyone could know. She was always climbing as high as she could, leaping around whenever she had the chance...this girl could leap onto the bed from the floor with the ease of a cat. And the attitude!! Any strokes to her head or lovely dewlap would be met with a lifting of her head as high as possible, craning her neck so it was vertical and then closing her eyes. She could be mean, too. Looking, that is!!! She was FIERCE! Any stranger who came too close would get a dose of her arched back and huge spikes with a tail that would was ready to slap at any moment....unfortunately, even DH and I were perceived as threats when chasing her down in our old apartment and we received a few lashes from her whipping tail!! She loved life so much...as long as she could climb and eat and have her way!

 

After the accident, she was confined to a short cage and could not move with ease anymore. We helped her climb, gave her frequent baths because she loved them and hoped for a 50% recovery....we hoped she would be able to minimally climb and lift her oh so proud behind up in the air again (she actually ran with her butt sticking up, like a 4 legged mammal instead of keeping low to the ground like most iguanas) but she began to take a turn for the worse in her last week. She stopped moving around, kept her head low and basically slowed to a stop. We found her on Tuesday looking very weak and dark (she was vibrantly green through most of her life, especially summertime) and my DH tried to revive her but, despite that she was not responding at all. Only her heartbeat told us she was alive. We said goodbye together, cried together and took her to the emergency vet for a euthanization because we didn't know if she would survive overnight or even want to. Her recovery had been slow and steady for those months but we suspect other things were wrong inside her and she couldn't hold on any longer.

 

If anyone has read all of this, I can't imagine you not being in tears, as I am, but I don't want anyone to feel any pain from my little wild iguana girl. She led an excellent life and took charge of it. Then she let us know when it was her time to go over the bridge and be free to climb, run, tail slap and look regal while basking in the eternal sunshine. Goblin, our big, male green iguana, and my DH and I will miss her for awhile but she is better off now, I know!

 

I just wanted to be able to post my thoughts somewhere. It definitely helps to express them.

 

Johanna

p.s. Thanks Wendy/Rayne for the thoughtful card and for reminding me she was part of my family!

Edited by GreytHurleyDawg

Bow Wow Wow Yippie Yo Yippie Yay :)

Siggy4.jpg

Johanna with hounds: Woodie (Molly's Marvin) (Grenade X Kh Molly) and Petra (Make Her a Pet) (Dodgem By Design X Late Nite Oasis)

and forever missing Hurley (Jel Try Out) (Gable Dodge X Kings Teresa) with Kalapaki Beach in Kauai as the background

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I am so sorry. :( Have fun climbing at the Bridge sweetheart. You are so loved and missed. :grouphug:f_white

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CODY ANGELO~FLASH GORDON.

 

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Yes, I have a few recent pictures on digital camera. (I was on the computer that did not have the pictures when I wrote my remembrance) Many pictures were taken during her life on regular film and I do not have a scanner at this time. If I get one, I will post them, especially the ones from her visit to the Renaissance Festival in Minnesota when she was a just a teenager and could fit on my shoulder (or head :o ) comfortably.

This is a pic from February, looking large and in charge but snooty at the same time :lol :

 

Hobbes206.jpg

 

Here she is with the same demeanor but in her cage. This is in her short, safety cage, I do not have any digital pics from her wilder days but she still looks good here, although blurry!!

 

Hobbes2.jpg

 

This is from about 2 weeks ago, still a fighter!!

 

sillies022.jpg

 

Believe me, this girl was Kermit the Frog green in the past. Winters are always harder and she greys a bit in winter. These pictures make her look like my Goblin-boy, who has always been a grey-green. He is here in a not-so-good picture. He's pretty camera-shy and a really laid-back dude:

 

sillies023.jpg

 

We will be making a photo album/scrapbook very soon for ourselves so we will go through her pictures and maybe find a way to get them here but I think her personality shows well in our only digital pics!!

Thanks so much for the kind words!

Bow Wow Wow Yippie Yo Yippie Yay :)

Siggy4.jpg

Johanna with hounds: Woodie (Molly's Marvin) (Grenade X Kh Molly) and Petra (Make Her a Pet) (Dodgem By Design X Late Nite Oasis)

and forever missing Hurley (Jel Try Out) (Gable Dodge X Kings Teresa) with Kalapaki Beach in Kauai as the background

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Guest SusanP

I'm so sorry. Her personality DOES show in the photos! ( Just curious, how old was she, and how old do iguanas live to be? ) I don't think most people realize how much personality reptiles have, how responsive they are. I'm glad she had a loving home with you.

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Guest tyrian

She was beautiful!

 

I am so sorry for your loss. I also lost an iguana too young (at 7 years), and still miss him - they are such fascinating creatures. You did an amazing job of keeping her quality of life high after her injury, in the photos she still looks strong and healthy. She was lucky to find her home with you!

 

To answer previous posters Q - I think they usually live to about 15. They are very difficult to care for properly, especially in cold climates.

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We had her for 6 years. Goblin is almost a year older than her. We were never expecting her to go so quickly. Iguanas are very special creatures...we fell in love with all the ones scampering about in the Mayan ruins in Cancun and Chichen Itza. (Yes, there are ruins on Cancun, itself!). They are very solitary but you can definitely share a wonderful relationship with them. And so beautiful, in my opinion. There is a large bruiser of an iguana in a local pet store who is not for sale and he is HUGE...his name is Captain Morgan: it suits him perfectly.

Yes, they are difficult to care for. Temps must be 70 F or higher.....minimum 65 and preferably 80ish so a lamp must be on all the time to maintain that. And they need a specific UV/Iguana lamp for proper UV absorption. Greens and vegetables are the best food for them but they need variety to maintain the proper calcium/phosphorus ratio. Ours love bread and tortillas too.

I finally went through all the photos I could find and I found about 20...not too many but all were very special and taken for good reason!! When we had a normal camera with film that had to be taken in to be processed, we only took pics when it was a real good shot!! Nowadays, I take pics of any old thing...ha ha.

The other health issue that was very strange about Hobbes was that when she laid her first clutch of (unfertilized, of course!!) eggs, she laid 60 or so of them (normally I guess it's 10 to 20 once a year) and neve laid anymore. So, we wonder now if she may have had problems that stemmed back to that long ago. But we certainly couldn't have known that, she was so full of life and busy living it!! :)

Bow Wow Wow Yippie Yo Yippie Yay :)

Siggy4.jpg

Johanna with hounds: Woodie (Molly's Marvin) (Grenade X Kh Molly) and Petra (Make Her a Pet) (Dodgem By Design X Late Nite Oasis)

and forever missing Hurley (Jel Try Out) (Gable Dodge X Kings Teresa) with Kalapaki Beach in Kauai as the background

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I''m so sorry for your loss of Hobbs - I can understand how you feel. We had an iguana (George, but known always as Ig - very original!) for 10 years as our family pet - I was 5 when we got him & he died at 10, when I was in high school. It's one of the few times I've seen my older brother cry... We all loved Ig and I know they have a lot of personality.

 

f_yellow:grouphug

Jeannine with Merlin, the crazed tabby cat and his sister, Jasmine, the brat-cat

With GTsiggieFromJenn.jpgAngel Cody(Roving Gemini), and Weenie the tortie waiting at the Bridge

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:f_red

 

she was a beautiful girl! So very sorry :(

Kim and Bruce - with Rick (Rick Roufus 6/30/16) and missing my sweet greyhound Angels Rainey (LG's Rainey 10/4/2000 - 3/8/2011), Anubis (RJ's Saint Nick 12/25/2001 - 9/12/12) and Zeke (Hey Who Whiz It 4/6/2009 - 7/20/2020) and Larry (PTL Laroach 2/24/2007 - 8/2/2020) -- and Chester (Lab) (8/31/1990 - 5/3/2005), Captain (Schipperke) (10/12/1992 - 6/13/2005) and Remy (GSP) (?/?/1998 - 1/6/2005) at the bridge
"Always do sober what you said you'd do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut." -- Ernest Hemmingway

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