Having a pet iguana requires a bit of time and dedication towards their dietary needs. Giving them watermelon as a snack is a great way to ensure that they have a diverse diet. Throughout this guide we’ll explain:
- Can Iguanas Eat Watermelon?
- How Often Should You Feed Watermelons to Iguanas?
- Health Benefits of Watermelon
- Can Rhino Iguanas Eat Watermelon?
- Can Baby Iguanas Eat Watermelon?
Can Iguanas Eat Watermelon
Yes, iguanas eat watermelons. As a matter of fact, Iguanas love eating watermelon because of its soft interior. While it is a tasty snack for them, an excessive amount of fruit will lead to an unbalanced diet. Make sure to remove the seeds from the watermelon before feeding your iguana. That way, you prevent them from accidentally choking on the fruit after consuming it.
You can see iguanas eating watermelon in the video below.
How Often Should You Feed Watermelons to Iguanas
An iguana’s diet should consist of 10% fruit. As a rule of thumb, feed them watermelon once every few weeks. Since iguanas are herbivores, it’s best to feed them vegetables that are rich in calcium (i.e. kale, alfalfa, pellets, etc).
70% of their diet consists of calcium-rich vegetables. (i.e. kale. greens, alfalfa, etc). Additionally, 20% of their diet consists of weekly vegetables like bell pepper and broccoli. Grains take up 5% of an iguana’s diet, and the rest of their diet consists of vitamin supplements.
Make sure that your iguana’s primary diet is fulfilled before feeding them watermelon. This ensures that they will have the nutrients needed to grow and strengthen their immune system.
Feed your iguana during the morning (approximately 1 hour after they wake up). Doing so helps your iguana digest the food before they go asleep for the rest of the day.
How to Feed Iguanas Watermelons – Different Ways
First, you’ll want to make sure the watermelon is clean before feeding them to your pet iguana. Store bought watermelon is a good start, just make sure to wash it in the sink with warm water before feeding your pet iguana.
The watermelon seeds can lead to a choking hazard for your iguana. To prevent this, slowly remove the seeds.
- Cutting the Watermelon
Place the watermelon on a table or a cutting board. With a large knife, carefully cut the ends of the watermelon. This creates two flat surfaces that allow you to cut the watermelon in half. Grab the knife and start cutting at the red section of the watermelon. This helps remove the green exterior and allows you to cut the final sections in half.
Turn the watermelon on its side and cut in the center. Then, cut the sides of the watermelon into smaller slices. Once done, you can feed it to your pet iguana!
- Understanding How Iguanas Eat
Remember, iguanas are unable to chew their food. They swallow it, meaning that they eat quickly and without hesitation. Chop the watermelon into smaller chunks while feeding them to aid in digestion.
If you notice any leftovers in their bowls, it’s best to clean it right away. Doing so prevents your iguana from getting sick. In fact, clean the bowl when they are done eating to ensure that it is ready for the next time you feed them.
- Use Watermelon to Train Your Iguana
You can train your iguana to drink water with a few pieces of watermelon. Place a few small pieces of watermelons near the watermelon to entice them into feeding it. By doing this, you’re teaching your iguana how to drink water while having watermelon as the rewarding snack afterward.
Feed your iguana watermelon at different times of the day. Your pet iguana loves to eat different foods daily, so feed them often but make sure their nutritional requirements are met without compromising their nutrients.
- Hand Feeding
Always hand feed the watermelon to your iguana. This gives you control over the amount of watermelon it eats and it’s easier to remove any extra seeds. Place the watermelon near the iguana’s mouth and they’ll eat it within seconds!
- Food Processor
If you want a simple way to feed your iguana, place the watermelon into a food processor. Always remove the seeds before doing so and give the processor 30-60 seconds to fully dice up the watermelon. Place the finished watermelon into a bowl and watch your iguana eat from it.
Can Baby Iguanas Eat Watermelon?
You should not give baby iguanas watermelon. Their bodies are still developing and they might become too dependent on it. Instead, give your baby iguana fresh greens and vegetables throughout the day to ensure that it grows properly. For better digestion, place the vegetables in a food processor before giving it to your baby iguana.
Health Benefits of Watermelon for Iguanas
Drinking water is a great way to keep your iguana hydrated. In fact, watermelon is made of 92% water. The combination of water and fiber ensures that your iguana eats a good volume of food without having an excess in calories.
Reduces Oxidative Stress
Watermelon is used to lower oxidative damage and inflammation, as it is rich in vitamin C and lycopene. In addition, it can be used to improve brain health. For instance, watermelon can be used to slow down the progression of Alzheimer’s disease.
Watermelon contains a small amount of fiber and lots of water – both are useful to aid in the digestive process. Fiber provides a bit of bulk in their stool, while the water helps the digestive tract operate smoothly. Eating fiber and water rich foods like watermelons will help your iguana have normal bowel movements.
Improve Heart Health
Your iguana needs a healthy heart to survive. By giving them a few pieces of watermelon, the lycopene nutrients will help lower their blood pressure and cholesterol. In addition, watermelon has citrulline, which increases the nitric oxide levels within their bodies. Nitric oxide is used to help expand blood vessels, which reduces blood pressure.
Can Rhino Iguanas Eat Watermelon?
Rhino iguanas are known for living in rocky areas. When it comes to fruit, rhino iguanas like to eat mango, kiwi, and watermelon. If you’re going to give them watermelon, ensure that it has been cleaned and chopped beforehand.