How bad is an iguana bite

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If you’re contemplating getting an iguana as a pet, one question that may be on your mind is, how bad is an iguana bite? Like all animals, iguanas possess natural instincts that allow them to protect themselves when they feel threatened or cornered.

However, not all bites are equal, and some may be more severe than others. In this article, we will delve into how to avoid getting bitten by an iguana, what to do if you get bitten, and how bad an iguana bite can be.

What Makes Iguanas Bite?

Iguanas are generally docile creatures when they feel safe and secure in their environments. However, there are instances when they may feel threatened, which could trigger their natural self-defense mechanisms. Some of the reasons why iguanas may bite include:


When iguanas feel fear or agitation, they may become aggressive and bite as a means of protecting themselves. This could happen if the iguana is not used to being handled or if it feels that its environment is being threatened.


Iguanas that are in pain or unwell may become irritable and may bite if they feel that they are being touched in ways that exacerbate their discomfort.

Mating Season

During mating season, iguanas become territorial and may become aggressive or bite to protect their mating partners or offspring.

How to Avoid Getting Bitten by an Iguana

The best way to avoid getting bitten by an iguana is to learn its temperament and body language. By doing so, you can tell when the iguana is feeling comfortable, relaxed, or agitated. This will help you know when to handle the iguana and when to leave it alone. Here are some tips to help you avoid getting bitten by an iguana:

Give the Iguana Time to Adjust

If you’ve just adopted an iguana, it’s essential to give it time to adjust to its new environment. During this period, avoid handling the iguana unless it’s necessary.

Learn the Iguana’s Body Language

Iguanas have their way of communicating their feelings and intentions. Learning their body language will help you know when to handle them and when to back off.

Approach the Iguana Slowly

When approaching an iguana, do it slowly and calmly. You can extend your hand and allow the iguana to sniff you before attempting to pick it up.

Avoid Making Eye Contact

Making direct eye contact with an iguana may make it feel threatened, leading to aggressive behavior. Instead, approach it from the side and avoid staring at it.

What to Do If You Get Bitten by an Iguana

If you get bitten by an iguana, the first step is to remain calm. Avoid pulling away, as this may cause the iguana to latch on harder. Instead, try to loosen its grip gently. If the iguana doesn’t let go, you can try to roll it over and release its jaw by gently pushing its cheeks inwards.

Once you’re free from the iguana’s grip, wash the wound with soap and clean water and apply an antiseptic. If the wound is deep, seek medical attention immediately.

How Bad Can an Iguana Bite Be?

While an iguana bite may not be as severe as a dog or a cat bite, it can still cause considerable harm, especially if left untreated. Iguanas have sharp teeth that can cause puncture wounds, and their bites may also transmit bacteria that can cause infections. In some instances, an iguana bite may require stitches or even surgery to repair the damage.


In conclusion, while an iguana bite may not be as bad as other animal bites, it’s still essential to take precautions to avoid getting bitten. By learning the iguana’s body language, approaching it slowly and calmly, and giving it time to adjust, you can reduce the risk of getting bitten. If you do get bitten, remain calm, and seek medical attention if necessary. Remember, prevention is always better than cure.

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