Cyclura Bloating condition

Cyclura Bloating condition


This is Humphrey he is 25 years old, I have raised him from a hatchling.
He is very gentle he weights around 25 Lbs
He is a Cyclura Nubila Nubila Iguana (Cuban Iguana)

Cyclura Iguanas are susceptible to a bloating condition, this is where food stalls in their system and gas builds up.
This happens because either they eat decaying or moldy food or the temperature changes quickly slowing their metabolism.

The internal pressure becomes so great it pinches off the GI system causing very high internal pressure. They swell up like a football and the pressure collapse their lungs. He died right in front of me about two years ago.

Having lost several Cycluras to the bloating condition over the years, I devised an emergency procedure.

I had to act quickly, I grabbed a 10ml syringe and placed an 18 gauge needle on it, then I pulled out the plunger. Next find the highest presser point, you can confirm by thumping the area. Insert the needle into the pocket and move it around typical you will hit the pocket and the gas will decompress through the needle and the open syringe. (be careful not to probe to deep)

You may need to repeat on the other side but typically one puncture is enough to reduce the bloating enough that you can use chest compressions to start them breathing.

This is what I had to do to Humphrey , slowly he started to breath and open his eyes, it was a very scary moment.

Be prepared to repeat the procedure at any time over the next day or so. I then place them on antibiotics. Do not feed for a day or two. I have done this procedure five or six times over the years and have never had a complication from it. One word of warning the worst thing you can do is anesthetize or give a sedative to an animal in this condition, this limits their ability for them to force themselves to breath and they will just drop right in front of you. If you have ever had a Cyclura iguana and found a healthy animal suddenly dead, you may have noticed they were bloated, most people assume this is post mortem but sometimes they died from this very condition.

Sam Pascucci
Florida Iguana & Tortoise Breeders

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