The Exotic Vet



  • Less is often more with lizards, do not tug and pull at their limbs, this causes them to fight more
  • Pin an iguana’s feet to its side and grasp the tail under your arm to keep it from whipping about and hitting someone
  • Know which species shed their tails and skin! Owners are not every happy if you break off the tail of their thousand dollar gecko.
  • Snakes only have 1 occipital condyle, so their heads can detach from the spines easily, be gentle! Use the helmet hold on them.
  • Always support a snakes body, they should never dangle.
  • Venomous snakes are never touched without the vet
  • Approach turtle and tortoise’s heads from below, then grasp them just behind the mandible
  • Pushing the hind legs of a turtle in will sometimes get the head to extend out where it can be grasped
  • You can get your fingers badly pinched in a larger tortoise’s shell if it pulls a limb in with you still attached
  • Do not ever let go until your vet tells you to do so
  • Wear latex gloves that have been rinsed before handling amphibians
  • Always wash your hands immediately after handling herps!