Yes, folks, lizards do get bored. They also have moods and get depressed. I’ve seen it many times. One example of a depressed lizard is when I left the country for 2 weeks. Lil’ Murph nearly stopped eating and pooing altogether, he became lethargic, and worried his caretakers. Four people were seeing to his well-being & keeping logs, so they were all informed as to when Murph did what.
The reason for this was if too much time lapsed in persuading him to eat, or if he would not poo, causing a concern for impaction, these care-takers (or Murph-sitters) could ‘draw straws’ to determine who would call me with concerning news before contacting his exotic animal veterinarian. (*note: it isn’t strictly the consumption of substrate which may cause it.)
It took quite some time upon my arrival home for Murph to become his happy self again. Reptiles can and will love (in their own way) the humans that love them. They are far more intelligent than many people would assume due to not having witnessed the proof.
You too can see the proof pertaining to reptilian moods. Have you been to an awful pet store and actually looked into the eyes of some reptiles, frogs, snakes, or any being, just lying there?
If it’s not night time, when lizards would be sleepy, and if they are not inbrumation, they should not look like that. They are in a prison with no love, no freedom, and no change of scenery.
That’s why it’s important to pluck them from their imprisonments to enjoy the warm sunlight with you, while diligently remaining their protector. This is good for their physical and mental well-being.
My lizards have been my companions as I do dishes and other chores. I make sure they do not stray far. I have placed them on a cushion at the opened, but screened window next to me while I toil (I set a sturdy prop under windows for extra security – maybe I’m overly protective, but if a window gave way in it’s track, that would be horrible, awful).
Sometimes a creation with household items to contain them within an area larger than their cage can be constructed. This helps them to get exercise if the weather outside is too harsh. Such also protects them from going where they should not.
If a dangerous pet, children or clumsy adults are around, don’t let your scaly darlings out of their cages – for their safety. Some daily time with their families is important. It is however, vital to remember that they need a minimum of hours of exposure to special heating and lighting (an informative post about that) and/or proper exposure to the sun’s rays every day.
Change a bored lizard’s scenery:
Lil’ Murph (shown above) has an enclosure with a view. He watches birds at the feeder & cars drive by. When the weather is pleasant, the window is opened for him. The enclosure that is now his is not glass (he gets his heating & lighting needs – but more on that later) this allows for sun exposure or the enjoyment of a breeze.
Ever seen a cat or other creature’s intrigue about the room that has just been redecorated? You can… yes, I am about to throw it out there… redecorate your scaly friend’s place for them!!
Make sure, if she/he/they have any favorite items, such as a hammock, perch, blankie, or whatever, you leave them in there. Keep in mind the design possibilities, in that they are not too close or far from the heating and lighting sources.
Your lizard has preferences too, and you will both be aware what they are after a couple of days. Your lizard will appreciate the change, be visibly annoyed by it, or appear to accept it. : )
People can adopt reptiles that need a family. It’s similar to visiting a humane society to find a furry friend. Just as we can give a good life to a cat or dog that is residing in a shelter (often for a short time before it’s euthanized), you can choose (won’t be easy) the special reptile(s) or other exotic animal(s) whose lives you will make better.
Internet search engines can be helpful in finding such facilities. Hopefully, there is a location near you. If assistance may be helpful, please contact Lizardplanet.com via the ‘Contact’ page.
Lil’ Murph has moved with his family! He is feeling really good about it all now. It took a few days for him to feel relaxed here.
Some lizards get moved with their glass enclosures and show no signs of being bothered, but lizards have personalities! Like dogs & humans are different in character, as are lizards. Many may find this difficult to believe, but I promise it’s true!
If you have that kind of relationship with your reptile, wherein you see them as your friend & you’re scaly child, would defend their life with your own…. well, you may be empathetic & highly tuned in to how your little or big, boy or girl is experiencing the changes.
If you are the lucky companion to a reptile or one day will be, these are things you may do to comfort your lizard with a major transition:
°Keep things of which they are familiar near them, i.e. their favorite branch, hammock, or dare I type it… stuffed animal.
°Let them remain in their enclosure with their lighting and an option to hide most of the time.
°When out of the enclosure, hold them the entire time, especially outside to keep them safe (if you’re someone similar to me, you may want him or her in a harness for lizards in the event they may want down to explore. Depending on where you are, possibly keep on your person a weapon of choice to protect them from low-life humans or predatory birds that can swoop down & grab them, don’t forget there may be beautiful, deadly snakes lurking unobtrusively, then, also, are those people whom let their vicious dogs roam free).
°Placing the enclosure at a window is, I believe, a good idea for any caged creature (I personally, would never want to not see the great outdoors, [Do unto others….] right?!). The view, or birds, or whatever may give the scaly sweetie(s) something to somewhat meditate on, to calm him or her.
°Speak to them here & there when traveling, reminding them you’ve not forsaken them. This can also be done while giving them the grand tour of the different home, but if he or she is resisting the absorption of it all, it may be sensory over-load, wait a few days or so. Lizards may occasionally be slow to move or react, but by no means are they dumb. They are ponderers & observers. They have comfort zones too.
°Attempt not to allow your reptile to roam the new floors unless it is shown a desire to do so. As you can see in the video below, our Lil’ Murph was not ready for the overload to his senses. Just after I stopped recording, he voluntarily walked into the cage to be with his things. On top of this, he may not have approved of the unclean carpet, construction clutter and atrocious country-styled, diarrhea-hued wainscoting.
Finally, they may behave a little differently. They may seem sad, sleepy, have an appetite change or have a different pooing schedule. Don’t be alarmed. If such behavior exceeds more than a few days, consider a visit to the exotic animal veterinarian. This may further stress them, but you know your lizard & it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Apologies for the audio. There were echos in the house & being a good camera girl was low on my priority list. I had been busy packing or at the new place working and bleaching nearly every hard surface for quite some time, so September 14th, a full day was going to be spent at the new place. I thought it a good idea to take Murph in a cage in the back of my car to spend the day with me.
After all, I could feed him, he could see his new home & I could take breaks to sit on the sunny deck with him. I placed him in the SUV so he could see me. I opened the sun roof for him. I turned to check on him when I safely could. So, 10 minutes into the drive, he crawled into his hide to feel secure. It stressed him. He handled it well because he’s my tough little dude, however, I do baby him. He is highly alert, sensitive to his surroundings, and intelligent. The boy knows he likes to explore within mild forms of adventure, overall, preferring his life to remain chill (for a lack of proper description).
We moved into this old house and it has a neat history. One interesting thing I discovered from kind, elderly neighbors, (should I be neighborly & bake a pie or something? These people are so generous!) is that it is one of the houses in the area which, around 25 years after being built, due to changes to the land the homes were originally built upon, were actually moved and rested upon basements designed to the specs of the homes! I commend those old guys. They knew what they were doing! A grand-scale operation was executed with excellent results!
After cleaning the duct system, I scrubbed the old floor vents & am giving them a new coat of paint. Only one needed sanded first, but, I sprayed it anyway. Priorities, ya know… I have to deal with wallpaper. I see stupid little specks of mauve flowers even when I close my eyes!
Typical… Dog wants in, Murph wants out! So much to do and they’re keeping me busier!! What is this lump, did the last residents cover a cold air return with carpet, Why oh why, what’s next?! Carpet has been removed from 2 bedrooms revealing hard wood floors (now cleaned but not sanded or shined, a later project).
Dog wants out because we’re out.
Murph likes this floor now.
We have a different large tree to appreciate. It’s not the wicked-beautiful one at our last home that we’ve loved for so long, but Murph has bonded with it. I did not stage this photo! Murph did a cute wiggle squiggle and the leaf lifted unto his head!
Less-stressed best wishes from us. Hope all is well at your end!
“Give me Lizardry or give me Death!” – Dawn Renee ♥