Pet of the Day

February 21, 1999

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Monster, the Pet of the Day
Name: Monster
Age: Deceased,
Three and a half years old
Gender: Male
Kind: Savannah Monitor Lizard
Home: Elkhart, Indiana, USA
   My lizard, Monster by name, was purchased as a 14" long "pup." After two and a half years, he reached 43 1/2" long, and seemed to stop growing. Unfortunately, at three and a half years, he died of an intestinal blockage. This photo was taken in the spring of 1987 after a "reptile show" at a nature center, conducted with a friend of mine who worked at a pet shop. Monster became very tame and was used to being handled, but I would never have let children play with him.

    As a Savannah Monitor Lizard, he probably came from the grasslands of Africa; that being a huge continent, I really can't say what kind of locality. By his coloring, I'd imagine dry savannahs. I'm not really sure how long they live, but I'd estimate ten to twenty years in good captive care. Not sure about the wild. Monster was raised on a diet of Alpo and scrambled eggs (combined), supplemented with live mice and rats. Really he'd eat anything meaty. Once he ate some lasagna (to my amazement), and another time, to demonstrate that he would not eat vegetarian fare, I rolled a grape past him. You guessed it; he ate it. Still amazes me.

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