The pet iguanas are simply herbivores, and they do well with greens, vegetables, and fruits. If you own an iguana, you might be wondering if it can eat pineapple.
While iguanas eat a wide variety of greens and veggies, not all plant matters are right for them, as some tend to be toxic. Risking your beloved iguana’s health is the last thing you want to happen; therefore, it is necessary to make sure the food you are feeding is safe.
So, should you feed pineapple to iguanas? Continue reading for more information on this and other related sections.
What Is the Nutritional Value of Pineapple?
Feeding nutritious and a varied diet to your iguana is the key to having a happy and healthy pet, and this should be a priority to all iguana owners who want the best for their friend.
Is pineapple nutritious? Does it have the necessary nutrients needed by the iguanas? Let’s find out from the nutritional table below.
Pineapple is a nutritious fruit and is famous for its high contents of vitamin C and minerals like manganese, magnesium, and potassium. It also has a healthy balance between the two essential minerals, calcium and phosphorus.
Pineapple is among the topmost foods rich in manganese, and this mineral is essential for strong bones and good health.
Can Iguanas Eat Pineapple?
Iguanas can eat pineapple but only in moderation. On the iguana’s diet, fruits should only account for 10%, while the remaining part consists of greens and vegetables. And this indicates that fruits serve best as treats, and you should feed them on rare occasions.
When iguanas eat pineapple, they will benefit from a couple of nutrients including, calcium, manganese, fiber, water, vitamin C, among others. Iguanas have a high demand for calcium as it performs a number of functions in the body.
Pineapple can aid the digestive system, reduce inflammation, and boost the immune system of iguanas.
One function is enhancing growth and making sure there is strong bone formation during this period. It is also the role of calcium to ensure that your iguana maintains a stable skeletal structure in its entire life.
Moreover, pineapple contains a pretty low percentage of protein, and this makes it suitable for iguanas. These lizard pets are herbivores and don’t require foods rich in protein as they can expose them to health problems like liver and kidney disorders over time.
Pineapples are best for adult iguanas as compared to young ones. Because they have low proteins and contain other ingredients such as vitamin C which boost immunity.
How Often Can Iguanas Eat Pineapple?
Now you know that iguanas cannot eat fruits every day as they are not their staple foods. But how often should you feed pineapple to your iguana? Let’s find out.
Although pineapples are nutritious and good fruits for iguanas, one thing about them which calls for the need to limit their consumption is that they are acidic. This fruit is quite high in oxalic acid.
Oxalic acid or oxalates binds to calcium and prevents the iguanas from absorbing it, and if this continues for a long time, it leads to calcium deficiency. The resulting compound after oxalates binds to calcium is not removed with urine and tends to cause kidney stones.
Vet answer: When pineapples are overfed to iguanas, they inhibit the filtration mechanism of the nephron in the kidney. Oxalic acid present in the pineapple reacts with calcium to form calcium oxalate which is hard stone-type material. As a result, kidneys fail to filter and absorb other elements.
Additionally, pineapple has 13mg of calcium per 100g, which is incredibly low for iguanas. The fruit also has a high amount of sugar that accounts for 9.85g/100g, which is also enough reason to control their consumption.
So, to prevent any negative impact from pineapples, iguanas should eat a few and small pieces of pineapples about one time a week or every other week.
Can Iguanas Eat Pineapple Skin?
Like any other lizard pets, iguanas should only be eating the pineapple’s flesh and never its skin. You also need to remove pineapple core before feeding. To be straightforward, always make sure you peel the pineapple before feeding and remove every content inside except the flesh.
Pineapple skin is nutritious, just like the flesh part, but it is pretty rough for the iguanas to eat. Because of its rough texture, the skin is likely to cause impaction if iguanas eat it, which can be dangerous.
The skin may have come into contact with pesticides or fungicides, and such chemicals come with a laundry list of health disorders.
The core is also hard, and one common thing about iguanas is that they aren’t used to chewing food but swallowing them; the core will pose impaction hazards. When peeling a pineapple for yourself, make sure to do the same for your lizard friend.
Can Iguanas Eat Pineapple Tops?
If you wonder whether iguanas can eat pineapple tops, note that these are among the leaves that you should keep off from your iguanas’ diet. Pineapples tops are edible to most domesticated animals, but it’s a different case for our beloved pets.
The tops have a rough texture, similar to the skin, and therefore are difficult for iguanas to digest and will also cause impaction, and they can also be toxic.
If you are looking for suitable vegetables or greens to feed to iguana, you can choose zucchini, sweet pepper, corn, turnip greens, squash, pumpkin leaves, radish, and collards, etc. Fresh veggies and greens are most preferred, but you can feed frozen ones at times.
How to Prepare Pineapple for Iguanas?
It is also important to know how to prepare and serve pineapple and any other food to your iguana to avoid making common mistakes that people usually make.
- Organic pineapples are free from pesticides and fungicides and are the best choice for your pet. But you can also buy the inorganic ones if they are the ones available.
- Then, whether you buy organic or inorganic pineapples, you need to wash them properly with clean water to clean off any unnecessary materials or dirt. Allow the fruit to dry.
- Remove the pineapple skin and cut to remove the core as well. Then, chop the fruit into smaller sizes that your lizard can easily swallow.
- Your iguana will only require to eat a few pieces of the fruit. You can opt to feed the pineapple as part of the diet, or you offer them solely.
And that marks the end of my article, and I hope you learned something from it concerning iguanas and pineapple. Pineapples are ideal fruits to feed to iguanas but only in limited amounts.
This is because this fruit is acidic and binds to calcium and other minerals in the diet, making them unavailable for absorption. Iguanas should not eat pineapple skin, core, or the tops, but should only eat the flesh part, and it must be fresh.