Can iguanas eat apples?
In this article, we will answer the question “Can iguanas eat apples?”, and what is an ideal diet for pet iguana?
Can iguanas eat apples?
Yes, iguanas can eat apples but in moderation. Apples are high in sugar so you don’t want to overdo it. Remove the seeds and peel of an apple before feeding it to iguanas. The fruit should be cut into smaller chunks.
This will prevent the apple from becoming a choking hazard. Plus the seeds of apples contain cyanide which is toxic If ingested. Apples should only be given as a treat to iguanas.
Only 15-20% of the energy intake of iguanas should come from treats like apples and other fruits. Giving the treats in moderation to iguanas will prevent obesity, diarrhea, and other issues in iguanas.
The following nutrition facts are applicable to ½ an extra small apple.
As evident from the table, apples are rich in Vitamin C and low in calories and proteins. Healthy carbs provide energy.
Apples have a good amount of water which helps in hydrating iguanas. To promote drinking habits in iguanas, you can add some apple juice to their water as a sweetener.
Other treats to serve your iguana
Iguanas should be fed a diverse diet that includes fruits, vegetables, plants, and insects. All of these food groups are important to be included in your iguana’s diet to fulfill its nutritional needs.
Calcium-rich fruits like raspberries, papayas, and figs are encouraged to be given to iguanas. Other fruits like melons, plums, peaches, strawberries, bananas, grapes, and kiwi also make for a great treat for iguanas.
Foods to not feed a pet iguana
Lettuce and Rhubarb: Lettuce leads to diarrhea in iguanas. Besides, It does not fulfill the nutritional needs of iguanas.
Rhubarb is toxic for your pet iguanas. It can cause mineral buildup in the kidneys leading to kidney damage.
Spinach and Beet Tops: These two vegetables are rich in oxalates which have the capacity to bind calcium and reduce its absorption. In iguanas, this can lead to Metabolic Bone Disease (MBD) which gives rise to other health conditions in iguanas.
Avocado: Avocados contain a fungicidal toxin called persin, in the pit and peel and, in small amounts, in the fruit flesh. This toxin can cause death If ingested in sufficient amounts.
Other FAQs about Apples which you may be interested in.
What type of plant material can I feed my iguana?
80-90% of the diet of an iguana should consist of dark green leafy vegetables. Yellow, red and orange vegetables are also a good choice. No more than 20% of an iguana’s diet should consist of fruits.
Vegetables are iceberg or head lettuce and celery are considered nutrient-poor and should be avoided. Feeding Calcium-rich vegetables to iguanas is encouraged.
These vegetables include collard greens, beet greens, mustard greens, turnip greens, alfalfa hay, bok choy, kale, parsley, Swiss chard, romaine, kohlrabi, escarole, and dandelion.
40-50% of adult iguanas calories should come from these plants. The remaining 30-40% calories can be derived from vegetables like cactus, broccoli, squash, bell peppers, green beans, sprouts, sweet potato, parsnips, okra, cucumber, asparagus, mushrooms, carrots, peas.
Vegetables like Swiss chard, spinach, and beet greens are notorious for making your iguanas nutrient-deficient because they bind with the calcium rendering them un-useful for the iguana.
Similarly, vegetables like cabbage, kale, and mustard greens contain goitrogens that can lead to goiter and hypothyroidism.
It is preferred to feed raw vegetables to your iguanas to make sure no nutrient is wasted during the cooking process.
Make sure you wash your produce thoroughly to wash the pesticide residues. Feeding organic produce, that is free of pesticides and toxic chemicals, is encouraged.
Should animal-based protein food be fed to iguanas?
Animal-based protein foods such as crickets, mealworms, pinky mice, tofu, and hard-boiled eggs are rich sources of protein.
These should only make up 5% of an iguana’s diet. Increase it to 10% for young and growing iguanas. Avoid feeding dog and cat food to iguanas as it contains reasonably high levels of proteins.
Do I need to give my iguana vitamin and mineral supplement?
It depends on the iguana’s age. Dietary needs for calcium and phosphorus are particularly high for all iguanas independent of their age. It is recommended to spray calcium powder on iguanas feed at the rate of 4-5 times every week.
Use a specifically formulated calcium powder for reptiles (calcium carbonate or gluconate), that does not contain vitamin D or phosphorus.
In this article, we answered the question “Can iguanas eat apples?”, and what is an ideal diet for pet iguana?