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My Gold Tegu is a bit odd

Discussion in 'Colombian Tegu Discussion' started by Austin27, Dec 14, 2018.

  1. Austin27

    Austin27 New Member

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    Hi everyone I'm keeping Austin in a 4x2 foot enclosure, he's still a baby and I bought him as a hatchling at a repticon in August. I fill the enclosure with the bioactive soil/mulch stuff I bought at the pet store. It's more of a 70/30, the basking site is 130-135. My humidity is always usually over 70% after I mist in the mornings, I always leave fresh water and I've witnessed him drinking.

    Now the issue is before the basking temps were 130ish they were about 118 or 120 and he wasn't eating like I think he should.
    I always get Austin out and hold him while he is eating from my plastic tongs. I feed him ground Turkey, sometimes raw chicken sliced up into pieces he can swallow, and I feed him egg yellow from a hard boiled egg sometimes and he loves it. I have been cage taming him since August, it has been a rough ride to say the least. He would run out of my hands and get up on two feet like a hot rod leaving the line racing. Now he's somewhat communal with me and will allow me to pet his chin, and dig him out to hold him in the morning time. But when he's been basking for a while he tries to run away when I place my hand in the enclosure. Is this his way of telling me to get away? Because if I try to go slowly under his chin to pet him or pick him up he whips me with his tail and bites, death rolls onto my finger and he starts to charge me sometimes. Should I be looking for another method of taming? I'm currently trying 30 minutes in the bath tub every day to see if that works any better. Is this just his little attitude he will have for the rest of his life? Or is there any way I can get him to be a consistent sweetheart?

    I've attached some pics of the little guy. Any responses would be appreciated.

    Attached Files:

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  2. AlphaAlpha

    AlphaAlpha Active Member

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    Alpha is now around 18 month and still can be tempremental at times especially trying to get him out of his enclosure, even though he love to come out... He doesn't show aggression but can try to scramble away and death roll but only for the first pick up out of his eclosure and for a few seconds, easily calmed by talking and stroking his head (which is a great mission in its self with a 3foot+ power house trying to get away.......lol).... I just tend to swoop him up and hold him against my chest making sure I have at least 2 t-shirts so his claws don`t slice me.

    just be patient I'm sure he'll grow to be just fine.
  3. Austin27

    Austin27 New Member

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    He flew out of his enclosure today running away from me, I've seen this movie before... As I try to gently get him back into my hands he scurries away into the darkness under my Beardies tank stand, it is a nice confined space he feels comfortable with but I can't let him roam because I can't trust him and I have no idea what he could possibly get into. So as I'm moving my hand closer he gaped each time lol, I knew I was getting bit. I got bit a solid 4 times but I didn't pull away, so after I picked him up he stopped being mean to me lol. Let me rub his head and everything no gaping or hissing. It is just strange to me but I'm sure to no one else as to why he's so calm all the time in my hands but not calm while I'm trying to scoop him up.
  4. AlphaAlpha

    AlphaAlpha Active Member

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    I used to tease Alpha in a box when I first got him so I could take him into my hall way or bathroom so he had no where to hide, I would then just sit reading or playing on my tablet keeping as still as i could so he could grow some balls to come investigate me instead of me chasing him round his enclosure, I also used to sit with my hand in his enclosure not to touch him just so he got used to knowing me, moving closer and closer over the next few months.
    Although he does have free rein of my apartment now because hes big enough for me not to lose, he still does have his hide spots and sticks to them more often than not.
    Also when Alphas mouth used to gape instead of pushing on and still going for the pick up, I used to just freeze and wait so he could get used to my hand a little and more often than not he would relax.

    Be warned you neded patience, patience and a bucket more patience......lol

    Just remember other animals that live for 15-20 years take upto 2 years to train and trust each other.
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  5. Debita

    Debita Active Member

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    I'm just strangely happy to have someone else go through what I go through. Skully has been with me for over 8 months now, and we're starting to finally bond. I let her dictate what she wants. I also never feed her while holding her. (not saying I never will but while trying to gain their trust I try to do as much as I can that would be natural for her). She now comes to the glass and tries to come out, and when I go to get her she seems more willing. They like being out, but they really want it on their terms. I don't mind that, but it was a gigantic process of slowly letting me even touch her in the beginning. Then I tried touching her differently. She has her food when she needs it - I tried rewarding but it didn't seem to make a difference. She still tries the death roll without fail, every time I bring her out of her home. I yell "no" and "stop" and she looks at me very weird and then I tuck her tail under my side and we're good to go. She has been a hellion. On some weird level, it makes it that much better when she accepts me, and that's actually happening. So many people said (last April) to give it a few weeks.... I respect everyone's opinion here, but I do think there are some difficult little beasts that take up to a year to tame. Hang in there! It's worth it! (I can't believe how many times you've been bitten!! The first time Skully tried to bite me, she smacked her head onto the glass door...she was just a blur to me, but was in fantastic Tegu form...lol)
  6. Austin27

    Austin27 New Member

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    Update he is approx 9 months old now. He's just about turned into a complete sweetie. I'm pretty sure it is a he but kinda 50% about it. He is way too big for his enclosure now so hopefully animal plastics will ship the 96×48x48 I ordered for the rest of his life!! I'm super excited to get it and modify it. And make it a dream home for him. He jumped intnp the toilet today spring boarding off of my body as I was laying in my bathroom floor where I let him roam.

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  7. Austin27

    Austin27 New Member

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    Absolute baby and I'm in love.

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  8. AlphaAlpha

    AlphaAlpha Active Member

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    Looks calm and really healthy and awsome to hear more good rep for the Colombian :D:D

    Not too sure to give you any idea on sex but alpha started flashing his bits at around that age and left spunky plugs.
  9. Austin27

    Austin27 New Member

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    Here he is again, letting me hold him on command basically. Pretty much doesn't fight anymore by wiggling and speed walking away from me in his enclosure. I'm able to just scoop up and gently lift him up slowly while talking to him. What a point to get to here! Several times I thought about giving up, I even had a new home picked out for him and everything. Ordered a box to ship him away in, and for whatever reason just like before when he was younger, I just couldn't pull the trigger and get rid of him. I think it's because I just didn't want to give up on training him to be very tame, and I have never been a quitter all my life. So just remember guys if you're new to Gold Tegus don't give up. It takes MONTHS. I really cannot stress that enough, you have to work with them every day and not beat yourself up over the smaller things. Guess what? These guys CAN be puppy dog tame. I have seen it for myself, I called Austin by his name and held both of my hands out and he came right up to me and got into my hands. So there it Is right there guys, never give up on your babies. Will I ever tame him enough to take him outside? Probably not lol but we'll see!

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  10. AlphaAlpha

    AlphaAlpha Active Member

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    In my eyes all they take is a bit more patience and the realisation of how to be calm and collected around them..... My Alpha although not puppy dog like never shows any signs in the slightest of aggression.
  11. James Smith

    James Smith Active Member

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    Patients and love. I am a true believer that is all it takes. Love will make you learn more and more about them to strive to take better care of them.
    Patients will keep you calm so you don't freak out which will make them do the same.
  12. Walter1

    Walter1 Moderator Staff Member 1,000+ Post Club

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    May I add, a sense of humor as well?
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  13. James Smith

    James Smith Active Member

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    So very true, and most times they are laughing at you...smart little buggers...lol
  14. Debita

    Debita Active Member

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    Def need a sense of humor - my sweet (maniac) girl that I have finally gotten to trust me - she's 2 now, have had her for a year.....IS ACTUALLY A BOY. No wonder he hated me for so long! Lol How rude.
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  15. James Smith

    James Smith Active Member

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    Devita that is so funny but not funny at the same time....lol
  16. Austin27

    Austin27 New Member

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    Now I noticed that since I've moved his enclosure to the Garage he has basically reset almost everything I've done for him to tame down. As I mentioned in my other thread about the fluke eggs and other parasites he had cleared up after I took him to the vet...Today he got me right on my mustache and down into my upper lip. It was a pretty nasty bite but it was my fault. I was trying to lure him out of the roam room by enticing him with a hopper mouse, he took the mouse and got pissed at me when I tried picking him up. He put up a squirming fight, I had my face way too close to his and talking baby talk to him as usual.. this is the result lol
  17. Austin27

    Austin27 New Member

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    I hope I don't have an ugly scar there the rest of my life.

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  18. James Smith

    James Smith Active Member

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    I am sorry your Tegu is going through another period of mood change. You will have to be patient and be careful not to nourished bad behavior. He is very smart, almost too smart for their own good. Good luck and be careful.
  19. Debita

    Debita Active Member

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    Agree with James - they pick up on nuances that you might not realize. I did have a similar experience with Skully, my 2 yr old. I thought we had gotten past the attack/fear/aggression mode when it got warm enough to put him in an outside container in the sun. He immediately started treating me as if I was a stranger, and tried to lunge and bite me and my husband several times while he was completely enclosed. My impression was that he really liked his new digs, and didn't want to be interrupted. I really want to put him back out in that container in the sun again (it's 80 degrees here), but man.....it was a major pain getting him back into his "too small" tank.

    Good luck - It will get better!
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  20. AlphaAlpha

    AlphaAlpha Active Member

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    Sometimes you need to take a step back to move forward and keep you on your toes ..... Boundaries do get tested at times just stay strong you'll get there
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