Pet of the Day

October 25, 1998

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Cripple, the Pet of the Day
Name: Cripple
Age: Unknown
Gender: Unknown
Breed: Iguana
Home: Staten Island, New York, USA
 
   Cripple came to the Iguana Den just over one year ago. He/she will never leave us. His owner was a girl that worked for a local pet shop selling Iguanas. You know, the people that often give out the information on how to care for these pets???

    This poor Iguana shows many of the signs of severe Metabolic Bone Disease. The shortened and widened lower jaw is just the beginning. Each of this iguana's four legs are deformed in some way. The worst one is his front right leg. The bones are twisted and bowed so much that he walks on its elbows. The back feet have toes that turn quickly forward instead of straight out. Cripple was in very bad shape when he arrived. Very lethargic and nearly dead. I had originally planned to put him to sleep and encase his tiny body in an acrylic mold.

    In the time that I did the research to find the products in which to do this I battled emotionally about the act of playing God with his life. I felt I did not have the right but I truly did not believe he could live a proper life. However, just terminating his life without giving this poor ig's existence some sort of meaning was not going to happen. I felt that if nothing more he could become a good teaching aide. Over this same period of time I effortlessly worked to keep him alive and happy as best I could. Cripple responded well and soon became healthy and happy. He runs to his food dish each night eagerly wanting to eat all of his food. He never wastes a leaf. Cripple is a Happy Ending Iguana. Since his health turned around so well we decided to keep him alive and love him the way he was never loved before.

    For more photos visit Cripple's website.
 

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