Reptile dysfunction

Actually, there’s nothing wrong with your iguana; it’s just your time of the month. Dr. Beth Breitweiser, a veterinarian at All Wild Things Exotic Hospital in Indianapolis, explains to Broadly:

“We recommend you don’t handle male iguanas during menstruation,” warned Breitweiser. While iguanas are usually very calm pets, they have been known to attack their owners that are menstruating. Breitweiser attributes these attacks to their owner’s changed pheromonal odor and the iguana’s characteristic stoicism that makes the reptiles hard to read. “Because they’re stoic, you can’t really tell if iguanas love their owners. I have anecdotal evidence that they love their owners, such as when they change colors or recognize their owners,” Breitweiser explained. “But some get males aggressive for whatever reason with these different pheromone levels. Especially if you’re at eye level.”

And “aggressive” may be just the beginning:

In Male Iguanas in Breeding Season and Human Females by Melissa Kaplan, author of Iguanas for Dummies, we learn that not only do iguanas attack menstruating women, but they also attempt to mate with them. Kaplan explains that some iguanas have special organs that can detect a menstruating woman’s hormones, and that these abilities might lead them to feel they’ve detected a mate: their unsuspecting female owners.

Scary stuff, this.

(Via HelloGiggles.)


  1. fillyjonk »

    12 June 2017 · 6:19 pm

    I wouldn’t say reptiles are so much “stoic” as “not giving a (rude Anglo-Saxonism) about their owners.”

    then again, I’ve never kept one as a pet, I might feel differently if I had a “noodle” (snake-owners’ affectionate term for their pets).

  2. McG »

    12 June 2017 · 11:46 pm

    I haven’t seen any reptile express emotion in a way anyone but a researcher specializing in reptile behavior would be able to interpret accurately — though I’m pretty sure the lizards our cats watch as they extend their chin ribs and bob their heads, aren’t saying, “Awwwwww! Who’s da pweddy puddy tat?”

    Unless, tauntingly.

  3. Holly H »

    13 June 2017 · 8:52 am

    1. OK, fillyjonk, I’ll admit that a lizard-owner shouldn’t be expected to make an emotional attachment with THAT particular pet. Although only a lizard-owner could tell us for sure.

    2. One more advantage of being of ‘a certain age’: I could be a care-free lizard owner.

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