Iguanas in the United States

Green iguanas, the most common species found in the United States, prefer to live in open fields near water. They are burrowing pests that measure up to five feet long including their thick tails. Usually harmless, they are often found basking in the sun on lawns. Although the pests typically avoid humans, an iguana will defend itself if cornered or threatened.

Do Iguanas Bite People?

The teeth of an iguana are designed to rip at plant material but can still deliver painful bites to people and pets. They have extremely powerful jaws capable of exerting considerable pressure. Luckily, iguanas will give warning before biting, so knowing what to look for can save people from potential injury.

Iguanas bite people and pets in self-defense. When assessing a situation, they will stand up on their front legs, lean forward to judge the distance, and bob their head to make them selves appear larger. The pests tend to bite more than once and are known for tearing rather than simply puncturing the skin. Iguana bites generally require stitches.

What to Do About Iguana Bites

The bacteria for Salmonella can be found in the mouths and feces of iguanas and can cause severe infections. Therefore, it is essential to rinse the wound vigorously, wash it with hot, soapy water, and then seek medical attention when iguanas bite. Thick leather gloves should be worn if handling an iguana is absolutely necessary, but the safest choice when these pests are lurking around the home is to contact the wildlife experts at Critter Control.