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Can a Tegu eat a cat?

AJ Kelly

New Member
Messages
6
Hello! I am fascinated by large lizards like Tegus and Monitors although I dont keep them. I am an avid fish keeper and like to keep larger fish mostly cichlids. anyways my question is can a full grown male tegu eat a cat? I have three cats and would really like a tegu im going to see if my parents will let me get one if I sell all my aquariums. I love my cats and dont want any harm to come to them. If the tegu wanted to could it? Thanks!
 

rantology

Active Member
Messages
263
*eat* the cat? I kind of doubt it, cats are just a bit too large for a tegu to swallow I think. That said personally I would never leave the two unsupervised, or really even let any of my cats in the same room as my tegu. They are more than capable of inflicting grievous injury on a cat even if they can't eat it, and all it would take is the cat pestering the tegu or the tegu feeling threatened or disturbed by the cats and the cat being too slow. It's a small risk, but it's not zero. On the flip side, I know some people let their tegus and their other pets mingle pretty freely without issue- I'm just paranoid.
 

Roadkill

Active Member
5 Year Member
Messages
502
Location
Earth
There was an event in the last decade where someone on a forum (possibly this one) claimed their tegu killed and partly devoured their kitten.
 

AJ Kelly

New Member
Messages
6
Geez thats brutal. My cats are all around 8-12 pounds. How much would a full grown male tegu weigh? I have heard anything from 15-50 pounds. I find it hard to believe a 15 or even 50 pound lizard could eat something like a full grown cat.
 

parapara

New Member
5 Year Member
Messages
19
I have had a cat that I let be around my tegu after a good long period of very close supervision (close enough that if the tegu made any sudden movements I could intervene, so pretty much sitting right next to them). I'll tell you the tegu had no interest in the cat, but the cat was super interested in the tegu, which might have been stressful for the tegu. I always tell people that the cat is the only pet I could ever imagine the tegu eating because it wouldn't surprise me if the tegu yawned one day and the cat just stuck his head in there to see what it was like.
 

Cookie

New Member
Messages
15
First of all I am assuming you will getting a youngster. At that point I would worry about the cats eating the tegu. You would need to keep it in an enclosure with the right environment while it is young and then as it grows the enclosure might need to grow also. During this time, when you let it out (supervised) the cats and the tegu will get used to each other and by the time it is full grown (which takes a couple years) they should be used to each other.
 

Teggers

New Member
Messages
7
Has anyone had a tegu eat a pet bird? I know they are not big climbers but would they climb for a bird?
Obviously they can, but what do you think the odds are? Does anyone here have birds?
 

Phlip5150

Member
Messages
57
I let my cat and dog around my Tegu but like was mentioned before with VERY close supervision ad You should always do with pets. My cat is always curious with my Tegu, it's part of their nature but he doesn't bother my Gu at all. But all animals are different.
 

Debita

Well-Known Member
1,000+ Post Club
Messages
1,221
Location
Prescott, AZ
Always supervision is smart. I lost a female Tegu to drowning last summer, because I had left her with her buddy (another Tegu) in the tub so many times, I didn't think ANYTHING would happen, much less, death. Well - you just never know in these situations that seem benign. Accidents happen, and the behavior of animals isn't all that predictable.
 

Lp3ro

New Member
Messages
4
Hello! I am fascinated by large lizards like Tegus and Monitors although I dont keep them. I am an avid fish keeper and like to keep larger fish mostly cichlids. anyways my question is can a full grown male tegu eat a cat? I have three cats and would really like a tegu im going to see if my parents will let me get one if I sell all my aquariums. I love my cats and dont want any harm to come to them. If the tegu wanted to could it? Thanks!
Yes a full grown wild tegu would see anything that it can take down as prey but they are smart And influential meaning if you get a Tegu a few weeks old and a kitten and they grow together they will not see each other as food the cat would actually be more of a threat to the small tegu I have some that are babies but they take down prey3 to 4 times their size I purposely want them to be in touch with their animal instincts so I do not feed them frozen or pre-euthanize prey strictly live prey But my training methods are very different to answer your question yes but you would have more to worry about with an Asian water monitor or savanna monitor
 

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Lp3ro

New Member
Messages
4
Yes a full grown wild tegu would see anything that it can take down as prey but they are smart And influential meaning if you get a Tegu a few weeks old and a kitten and they grow together they will not see each other as food the cat would actually be more of a threat to the small tegu I have some that are babies but they take down prey3 to 4 times their size I purposely want them to be in touch with their animal instincts so I do not feed them frozen or pre-euthanize prey strictly live prey But my training methods are very different to answer your question yes but you would have more to worry about with an Asian water monitor or savanna monitor
In my opinion Tegus or all Teiidae are the best pets hands down for so many reasons
 

Lp3ro

New Member
Messages
4
Yes a full grown wild tegu would see anything that it can take down as prey but they are smart And influential meaning if you get a Tegu a few weeks old and a kitten and they grow together they will not see each other as food the cat would actually be more of a threat to the small tegu I have some that are babies but they take down prey3 to 4 times their size I purposely want them to be in touch with their animal instincts so I do not feed them frozen or pre-euthanize prey strictly live prey But my training methods are very different to answer your question yes but you would have more to worry about with an Asian water monitor or savanna monitor
The bigger black and white in the picture is in her feeding tank they all have a living tank and a smaller tank to eat in the big female is Garuda the two little one you see are gadorih and zard
 

Sean32817

Member
Messages
48
Location
Orlando
Tegu are predators and very solid ones for their size.

Go onto YouTube and see if you can find some live feeding videos - you'll see that the tegu is a very fast and aggressive killer.

They have a solid bite and from what I've read an adult biting you in earnest will require stitches.

Their claws are also quite sharp - you can identify a tegu owner by the deep scratches all over their hands and arms.

Tegu scales feel pretty thick and solid and my Rex is in good shape and very muscular - if he stays this solid when he's full grown then there will be no handling him against his will.

As such, if the cat doesn't flee - it is faster and can out maneuver a tegu - I'd bet an adult tegu could kill a cat and it can definitely inflict a serious injury on the cat.

Should it successfully kill the cat then I would imagine that if it was hungry it would eat some of the cat - likely tear out the stomach for the organs, fat and other soft meat in that area.

Everyone above has given solid advice as far as socializing any type of reptile with cats/dogs so if you're smart and careful then neither animal should harm the other.

To address the question about them eating pet birds - Rex likes climbing and will happily scale from the floor up onto the couch and keep going till he's on top of the back of the couch. He also isn't fussy about live prey - I live in Orlando and those little anoles that are all over the place keep getting into his home - he rushes over and eats them the second he sees one.
 

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