Anole Lizards As Pets
Anole lizards, sometimes called American chameleons or simply anoles, are a great choice as a pet. They don’t require a lot of space and are easy to care for. Anoles are an especially good choice for people who may have pet allergies or are unable to exercise their pets.
Native to the southeastern United States, these small reptiles are fascinating to watch. They will literally change colors before your eyes and have unique little personalities. Normally shy creatures, most will come to know the voice of their owner and will happily rest on your fingers and hands.
How To Buy An Anole
You’ll find these lively reptiles for sale at most large pet centers. Typically they cost less than ten dollars.
You can buy one or more than one, as long as you have an ample size terrarium. We recommend at least a 20 gallon terrarium, preferably larger. They are a solitary species, carving out their own territory in the wild, so don’t feel you need to buy more than one to keep each other company.
Look for a lively, active lizard that appears a healthy weight and temperament. Males are slightly larger than females and may have more skin under their throat, commonly known as a dewlap.
The main caution is not to house two males together. They will be enemies and fight, with one inevitably being afraid and sulking. Females housed together will not pose a problem.
Bringing Your Pet Home
The trip home will be one of the most stressful times of an anole’s life. Be sure not to tack on other errands. Bring your pet directly home and have their terrarium all prepared and ready to go.
If you buy your pet in the winter, make sure your vehicle is adequately warmed up. The pet store will probably put the lizard into a large plastic air bag, secured at the top. Bring them directly home and gently deposit them into their new terrarium.
Don’t be alarmed if they scamper about frantically for the first few minutes. This is stressful for them, but soon enough they’ll calm down and begin to explore more leisurely. We recommend gently misting inside the terrarium just before they enter, in case they are thirsty. They will lap up drops of water from the twigs, branches, and rocks you have used to decorate their home.
Feed your pet after a few hours. By this time they will be somewhat acclimated to their surroundings. Don’t worry if they don’t eat right away. It may take a day or two to become adapted and comfortable.
Anole lizards make great pets, so get them off to a good start. Choose a healthy specimen that appears robust and active. Bring them directly home from the pet store and have their terrarium ready to go in advance. Finally, give them time to adapt to their new surroundings and get completely comfortable with their new home.