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A little advice please

Discussion in 'Red Tegu Discussion' started by Aidan Morrison, May 8, 2018.

  1. Aidan Morrison

    Aidan Morrison Member

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    Hello, I got my baby red tegu about 3 weeks ago from a reptile expo. My only issue is I NEVER see him out when I get home. I know they go through like a phase where they burrow a lot but how long does this last, because it’s been near 3 weeks and I NEVER see him? I put food in a dish before I leave for school and most of it is gone by the time I get home. The basking temperature is 120 and the cool side is 80. I’m just unsure of why he’s not out at all.
  2. Skeep

    Skeep Member

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    Hi, congrats on your new little guy (/girl)! It might just be that he's going to bed before you get home. What time are you there, and what time do his lights turn on or off? Tegus are usually most active in the early afternoon.
  3. Aidan Morrison

    Aidan Morrison Member

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    I live in Massachusetts, I leave for school at 7:30 and I turn the lights on before I leave. I get home from school at 2:15 and I shut the lights off for the night at 9:30 to 10:00ish. It’s just a little frustrating because I haven’t gotten to work on taming him down because he’s never out.
  4. Gary

    Gary Member

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    At 3 weeks I’d say you’re ok to start handling (or begin the handling process). I gave mine 2 weeks with zero contact and then began to interact. I would sometimes have to get him out of his hide. He huffed and puffed at first, but tolerated limited handling for a week or so. After that it got easier and easier. He was also out more and more.

    You’ve done a good job giving distance. Eating is a great sign your gu is getting comfortable. I’d say you should try interacting an hour or so after you get home and see how it goes after a few days of doing so!
  5. Aidan Morrison

    Aidan Morrison Member

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    Ok, I’ll try that. So is it ok to dig him up when he is burrowed in other places rather than his hide? Because I know your not supposed to remove him from his hide. I’m also going to try to turn the lights on later. Instead of turning them on at 7:00 I have a time set for them to go on at 9:00 and then shut off at 9:30 at night
  6. Walter1

    Walter1 Moderator Staff Member 1,000+ Post Club

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    They're strongly keyed to daylength. I,d go 7am to 9 pm. Put a worn shirt in his hide and keep hide temp mid to upper 70s. Tegus generally move around mid-morning for a few hours depending on season and gain a little mid to late afternoon. They're couch potatos.
  7. Gary

    Gary Member

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    While many will say you should never remove a tegu from it’s hide or unbury it, my personal experience is that building a relationship is most important. My tegu and I are at the point now where I never have to disturb him in his hide (he’ll come when I call if he wants to). For the first few months, however, I did occasionally remove him when he’d run and hide, so we could have handling time out of his enclosure. I feel like these sessions were important for the relationship we have now.

    You should try to pay attention to stress levels to make sure you aren’t crossing a line, but removing your tegu from it’s hide or unburying it isn’t going to instantly ruin your lizard (as some may suggest).
  8. Aidan Morrison

    Aidan Morrison Member

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    Ok, I think he might be shedding right now too because he has been buried for about a day and a half in his hide
  9. Skeep

    Skeep Member

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    You could also try only feeding your gu only when you're there. If he figures out that you being there means food, he will be much more eager to be out and about when you are!
    Gary likes this.
  10. Zyn

    Zyn Active Member

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    Gonna agree with Gary I unbury sev all the time and haven’t experienced any issues hell its at the point to where he expects me to unbury him when I get home from work lol
    Gary likes this.
  11. Aidan Morrison

    Aidan Morrison Member

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    Ok I dug him up and he actually didn’t seem to care to much, probably because he was surprised that I woke him up. I have him in a small enclosed area where I keep my Dubai roaches and a small space heater. He’s just chillin out and eyeing me very closely

    Attached Files:

  12. Walter1

    Walter1 Moderator Staff Member 1,000+ Post Club

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    He'll see that you're no harm and will get curious. They can't help themselves.
  13. Aidan Morrison

    Aidan Morrison Member

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    Ok cool, also I don’t know if you can tell from that picture or not but does he seem healthy? I mean, I think he does but it would be very reassuring if and expert like yourself would give your opinion since I’m just a beginner
  14. Walter1

    Walter1 Moderator Staff Member 1,000+ Post Club

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    The picture shows a well-fed, alert tegu. Looks good.
  15. Aidan Morrison

    Aidan Morrison Member

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    Thanks :)
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  16. Aidan Morrison

    Aidan Morrison Member

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    So it’s been 4 days now and I’m already starting to see progress, yesterday when I took him out and sat in the closet with him he actually crawled to me and layed on my hand for about 10 mins! I have had to dig him up every day but he doesn’t seem to mind, it now takes him about 5 mins for him to realize what’s going on and then he’s out exploring the little closest and crawling on my feet. I have been spending about 3 hours everyday with him when I take him out.
  17. Walter1

    Walter1 Moderator Staff Member 1,000+ Post Club

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    Nice going. Some days better than others, some tegus more human-bound than others. All seem to be curious though.
  18. Aidan Morrison

    Aidan Morrison Member

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    Yea, sitting with him right now and I think he’s quite tired today because he’s not roaming as much as the other days
  19. Zyn

    Zyn Active Member

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    Just remember their not dogs and stress levels can make reptiles sick so it never hurts to let him just sleep if he wants to
    Gary likes this.

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