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Old 02-21-2011, 12:42 AM   #1
Wrong choice???

I just bought a Columbian tegu, it was a in the moment type of thing. I got to the forms and started to research them. Turns out form the sound of things that I got the Nile monitor of the tegu would. I was wondering was this a bad choice? Can they be just as tame as the argen's?
Old 02-21-2011, 09:29 PM   #2
I bought my first Tegu, a Columbian Black and Gold, in the early to mid 80s...

Back then all of the Col Tegus on the market were wild caught. Naturally newly acquired wild caught animals, expecially reptiles, are harder to tame. Wild caught Col Tegus are still imported in mass, though some people are breeding them in captivity and even selectively breeding them for a calmer nature. This makes calmer Col Tegus more common. But your average every day store bought Col Tegu is still usually wild caught.

My little Col Tegu was an absolute terror. He attacked anything and everything he could. I simply could not even begin working with him to calm him down and I was fortunately allowed to return to the store I bought him from.

More recently, I am a member of a Tegu Forum (TeguTalk.com) and there are a fair number of hobbyists who share much different stories. Several of them, after a lot of hard work and patience, have ended up with fairly docile handleable pet Columbian Tegus...

Having said that, whenever you read about the wonderful puppy like Tegus, you are reading about Argentinian Tegus, not Columbians.

I currently have a 50" 10~12 lb male Argentinian Black and White Tegu and he is the absolute biggest sweety in the world. Actually right now he is sitting across the room on the love seat, as he free roams the house most nights when I get home from work. He is an absolute doll... when he is ready for bed he either goes back to his cage on his own or crawls into my lap and puts his head under my hand for a bed time head scratching...
Old 02-22-2011, 10:27 AM   #3
Thank you!
Old 02-22-2011, 11:17 AM   #4
Miss Tuniwha
I had a colombian b&w tegu for a handful of years.. she was like a puppy dog.. I even put her in a small dog harness, and would walk her on a leahs..

She would climb up my leg if she wanted attention, and would just lay in my lap..

If you pet her jowels, she would lean into it just like a dog..

I really miss her She passed away a few years ago.. curled up in her favourite hut..

I have seen some nasty ones, and some sweet ones.. They need to be judged independently!!!
Old 02-22-2011, 11:29 AM   #5
I have to agree with Brandi...I had a female Colombian (gold) that was a b***h and a half, and a male Colombian (again, gold) that was a joy to work with. I even gave him free rein of my reptile room much of the time (the problem being that he liked it hotter in there than I did, and he would repeatedly turn up the control on the radiator heater...one can argue that it was probably a random action, but he did it so regularly that I had a difficult time explaining it off that way. In fact, EVERY time he turned it up, he could be found lying under it; and, when it was at its normal setting, he would lounge elsewhere).
He was never a biter, but he would struggle for all he was worth when he was first picked up - until he was suitably supported....and, if he was someplace I could slide an arm under him, and position him before lifting him, it went a lot easier. Two totally different demeanors.
Old 02-22-2011, 11:30 PM   #6
I often frequent tegutalk and although i have not had a col myself there are a few people that have had great success with them. One member there just took there's into a school to do an eduction presentation with them.

Really its all about how much time you are willing to invest. Look at the green iquana. Most green iggies are mean and had being with people and thats becuase most people buy them thinking they are getting a cute little lizard and do not resurch them at all. Then they end up with a 6 foot dragon who wants nothing to do with them. On the other hand if someone who likes reptiles and loves working with them gets a young green iggy those are the ones you see riding on the shoulders of people.

So don't write the little guy off yet. Col tegus do seem to be tamed just not as easily as their larger cousins of Arg Tegus. Think of it as a challenge, almost anyone can have a tame Arg but it will take dedication to get a tame Col tegu. (ok i have met some weak mean arg tegus as well... but just saying)
Old 02-23-2011, 10:31 PM   #7
Thank you for all the information it has given me some confidence in my decision!

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