• Hello guest! Are you a Tegu enthusiast? If so, we invite you to join our community! Our site is specifically designed for you and it's a great place for Tegu enthusiasts to meet online. Once you join you'll be able to post messages, upload pictures of your Tegu and enclosure and have a great time with other Tegu fans. Sign up today! If you have any questions, problems, or other concerns email [email protected]!

Tegu won’t eat in front of me

hey! I have had my b&w for almost a month now. I believe she is about a year old. She is sweet but when I got her, she was sort of aggressive but I broke that by sitting in her enclosure everyday (we built a large one, outside) we have gotten to the point where I climb in and wait until she gets curious enough to come out of her hide and she will walk around and climb on me. She doesn’t really like to be picked up but we know each other pretty well now. I have tried to feed her veggies, which she won’t eat. I’ve fed her ground turkey and she would take a bite and leave the rest and I’ve tried beef, which she refused. She will not eat in front of me and so far, the only thing she deffinately will eat, are frozen baby mice, which worries me because I want her to get all of the nutrients she needs. She is also not good motivated at all. Curiosity seems to be her only motivator. Any suggestions on why she’s so picky with food or why she won’t eat in front of me?
 

Attachments

Gary

Member
Honestly, I wouldn’t worry too much. Mine is hit and miss eating in front of me. He has a camera in his room though so sometimes I leave the food and watch him from my phone :) He just doesn’t want to eat in front of me some days. *shrug*

Mine would only eat ground turkey at first. I got him eating pinky mice, then eggs. Once I got him eating eggs I could put yolk on other things. Now he eats various fruits (banana, blueberry, strawberry, grapes) as well as chicken liver, ground turkey, chicken, fertilized duck eggs, quail eggs, chicken eggs, dubia roaches, and plenty of thawed mice.

Just keep offering variety. Try mixing foods together. Tegus are smart and won’t starve to death. They can go days without eating and be totally fine on water alone. Patience and persistence are the key to expanding a tegu’s diet!
 
Last edited:
Honestly, I wouldn’t worry too much. Mine is hit and miss eating in front of me. He has a camera in his room though so sometimes I leave the food and watch him from my phone :) He just doesn’t want to eat in front of me some days. *shrug*

Mine would only eat ground turkey at first. I got him eating pinky mice, then eggs. Once I got him eating eggs I could put yolk on other things. Now he eats various fruits (banana, blueberry, strawberry, grapes) as well as chicken liver, ground turkey, chicken, fertilized duck eggs, quail eggs, chicken eggs, dubia roaches, and plenty of thawed mice.

Just keep offering variety. Try mixing foods together. Tegus are smart and won’t starve to death. They can go days without eating and be totally fine on water alone. Patience and persistence are the key to expanding a tegu’s diet!
Thank you, I will keep trying to mix it up. I’ve tried the reptile tongs and I’ve tried taking her out of her enclosure to feed but she just panicked and didn’t eat. I’m not even sure if she is that hungry because she never finishes her food. Thank you for the reply :)
 

MrExotic

New Member
hey! I have had my b&w for almost a month now. I believe she is about a year old. She is sweet but when I got her, she was sort of aggressive but I broke that by sitting in her enclosure everyday (we built a large one, outside) we have gotten to the point where I climb in and wait until she gets curious enough to come out of her hide and she will walk around and climb on me. She doesn’t really like to be picked up but we know each other pretty well now. I have tried to feed her veggies, which she won’t eat. I’ve fed her ground turkey and she would take a bite and leave the rest and I’ve tried beef, which she refused. She will not eat in front of me and so far, the only thing she deffinately will eat, are frozen baby mice, which worries me because I want her to get all of the nutrients she needs. She is also not good motivated at all. Curiosity seems to be her only motivator. Any suggestions on why she’s so picky with food or why she won’t eat in front of me?
Have you tried putting her in a 50 gallon tank and put some large crickets in there she will go crazy over those


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
No, she’s in a large outside enclosure. I’ve tried super worms and I’ve offered her a cricket with the reptile tongs but she didn’t seem interested
 

MrExotic

New Member
How long has she not eaten? When she was inside did she sleep a lot ? They like to hunt for their food and out of respect if they like you they won’t eat out of your hand .... And about the veggies they really don’t eat thoes often only when their sick .. or just have the craveings for it ..... she does gets all of her nutrition from the mice but don’t want to get her hooked on it because you will have to starve her for a few days until she eats something else or make her eat something els by feed her a lot of pinks since that’s all she wants until she gets tired of eating them


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Bianca Rosato

New Member
hey! I have had my b&w for almost a month now. I believe she is about a year old. She is sweet but when I got her, she was sort of aggressive but I broke that by sitting in her enclosure everyday (we built a large one, outside) we have gotten to the point where I climb in and wait until she gets curious enough to come out of her hide and she will walk around and climb on me. She doesn’t really like to be picked up but we know each other pretty well now. I have tried to feed her veggies, which she won’t eat. I’ve fed her ground turkey and she would take a bite and leave the rest and I’ve tried beef, which she refused. She will not eat in front of me and so far, the only thing she deffinately will eat, are frozen baby mice, which worries me because I want her to get all of the nutrients she needs. She is also not good motivated at all. Curiosity seems to be her only motivator. Any suggestions on why she’s so picky with food or why she won’t eat in front of me?
Maybe she's going into brumation? not sure what the climate is where you're from, but she may be refusing food because she is preparing for brumation and not because she's a picky eater. especially since her enclosure is outdoors and she is going to be feeling the temperature dropping each day as the winter approaches. just a guess!
 

Merlot

Active Member
I would try a higher heat lamp, go with 150w bulb, make sure she’s had a good spot to
Bask, a cool And dry area on other side of tank. Maybe the natural sun heat isn’t enough for her. Get a clamp base that holds the lamp in a specific spot. Also, try some seafood. They fuckign love that ****, some shrimp, some salmon, and whole smelt with the bones and everything. Maybe just head chopped off. Garauntew she’ll eat seafood. As the other guy said, when I pour qual eggs on top of something she don’t normally eat. She’ll eat it then, at least a nice amount of it. But def start with some fresh seafood. Shell on shrimp with some of the shell maybe taken off a bit if she’s a little small. But they love crunching them shells. Mine is pretty blessed to eat well with how much variety she gets and I hand feed. Even from my fingers dierectly sometimes. Slowly, put some food in the enclosure in your hands with a tong and just sit there and show it to her and let her come to you when she sees that seafood, move slow and do random things in the cage like move the dirt around and stuff like your being casual and she’ll become interested and less threatening
 
Maybe she's going into brumation? not sure what the climate is where you're from, but she may be refusing food because she is preparing for brumation and not because she's a picky eater. especially since her enclosure is outdoors and she is going to be feeling the temperature dropping each day as the winter approaches. just a guess!
That’s very possible! I live in south Florida so it’s always hot but she has been burried a lot lately. The temperature is a little colder (not a significant amount) in the mornings and in the evenings so that could be it also.
 
I would try a higher heat lamp, go with 150w bulb, make sure she’s had a good spot to
Bask, a cool And dry area on other side of tank. Maybe the natural sun heat isn’t enough for her. Get a clamp base that holds the lamp in a specific spot. Also, try some seafood. They fuckign love that ****, some shrimp, some salmon, and whole smelt with the bones and everything. Maybe just head chopped off. Garauntew she’ll eat seafood. As the other guy said, when I pour qual eggs on top of something she don’t normally eat. She’ll eat it then, at least a nice amount of it. But def start with some fresh seafood. Shell on shrimp with some of the shell maybe taken off a bit if she’s a little small. But they love crunching them shells. Mine is pretty blessed to eat well with how much variety she gets and I hand feed. Even from my fingers dierectly sometimes. Slowly, put some food in the enclosure in your hands with a tong and just sit there and show it to her and let her come to you when she sees that seafood, move slow and do random things in the cage like move the dirt around and stuff like your being casual and she’ll become interested and less threatening
Thank you for your reply. I thought about putting a lamp in her enclosure because I was worried she wasn’t getting what she needed, but I noticed she basks outside during the day without any problems. She eats egg yolks and baby mice so I’ll get her fish and see how she feels. She has watched me put food in the enclosure before and I’ll slide in (it’s big enough for me to climb in and lay around) and she has no problem walking all over me and climbing on me, but she won’t eat her food in front of me. I’ve also noticed if I feed her around dinner time, she goes into hiding for the night and will let her food sit, so now I have to feed her in the mornings before work, and when I get home, all of her food is gone.
 

Walter1

Moderator
Staff member
1,000+ Post Club
5 Year Member
That’s very possible! I live in south Florida so it’s always hot but she has been burried a lot lately. The temperature is a little colder (not a significant amount) in the mornings and in the evenings so that could be it also.
In S. Fl., they're down for the count November through February, although some will surface intermittently.
 
Top