FAQ-Reptiles

What do I need to keep my reptile happy?

(Habitat Setup)

  • Light – should include heat lamp. UV light, regular lamp

  • Moisture- a bowl of water

  • Bedding – sand, coconut fiber, bark, Repta-Liner(Green Mat)
  • 
Hiding spot – a fixture for the animal to hide in, decorative cave, driftwood
  • 
Vitamins - prepared powder or liquid as needed for your species 

  • Calcium - prepared powder or liquid as needed for your species
  • See our Bearded Dragon and Veiled Chameleon setup page. (This setup can be modified for many other reptiles.)


How often do I clean my reptile habitat?

How often to clean the tank or cage is dependent on the species of reptile you are maintaining. Some reptiles are very messy eaters and will need the habitat cleaned more often. It is important to clean out the bedding material regularly. The bedding material absorbs the animal’s waste products, food particles and other debris. Water spills and other liquids will contaminate the bedding. Replacing the bedding material will decrease the likely hood of your pet getting sick. Washing the cage or tank with warm water, with a very thorough rinsing and drying is recommended. A mild soap maybe used but must be very, very well rinsed.

What kinds of food does my reptile need?

There are four types of reptiles, each with their own specific requirements. Their diet changes as they mature and you need to adjust the food as they grow. Some species of snakes for example start off eating small insects and worms and then graduate to larger foods. Call us at 708-293-0600 to discuss your specific needs.

Many lizards need to eat on a regular or daily basis. Understanding the dietary needs of your specific species of lizard is very important.

Below are the four types of reptile diets. Each species of reptile will require a variety of foods stuff to maintain their health.

  1. Carnivorous – primarily meat eaters
  2. 
Herbivorous – primarily plant eaters

  3. Insectivorous – primarily insect eaters
  4. Omnivores – eats anything

Supplements are required to maintain the health and well being of the animal. In the wild they eat a wide variety of foods and get the necessary vitamins and minerals from the food they consume. We recommend supplementing your pets diet with vitamins and supplements.


  • Vitamin and mineral supplement

  • Calcium supplements
  • Live Feeder food for reptiles (species dependent)
  • Pinkies
, Mice, 
Rats (3 sizes)
  • 
Crickets (3 sizes available in our store)
  • 
Small Mealworms
  • 
Super Mealworms

  • Wax worms
, Earthworms, Tomato worms
, Red worms
, Black worms

  • Ghost Shrimp

  • Feeder Gold Fish (3 sizes available in our store)
  • Minnows, 
Guppies, 
Shrimp, 
Crayfish
  • Plants, Vegetables and Fruits (species dependent)
  • Available from your favorite grocery store: Kale, Endive, Mustard greens, Collard greens, Red leaf lettuce, Green leaf lettuce, Escarole, Turnip Greens, Mixed veggies-thawed, Spring Mix-which is pre-bagged
  • Watermelon, Kiwi, Strawberries, Mango, Bananas, Papaya, Cantaloupe, Honey Dew, Grapes, Oranges, Lemons, Limes
  • Squash, Yellow peppers, Bell peppers, Cactus Leaves
  • Timothy Hay,
  • Prepared pellet type foods

Many reptiles such as turtles and tortoises benefit from being outside during the warm weather. They will eat a wide variety of vegetable matter, for example dandelions, make sure they were not from a fertilized lawn, in your backyard. IT IS IMPORTANT TO MAKE SURE YOU ARE NOT USING ANY CHEMICAL FERTILIZERS OR WEED KILEERS ANYWHERE NEAR YOUR PET.

How often do I need to feed my reptile?

Feeding your reptile is really species dependent. Some snakes may only need to feed once or twice a month for the big snakes; others may need to eat daily.  Talk to our knowledgable staff to get the correct feeding routine for your pet. Stop in or call us at 708-293-0600.

Click here to see more information on feeding one of the commonly available tortoises, the Sulcata Tortoise, also known as the African Spur Thigh Tortoise.

Call Today!

Animal Island Pets
14411 S Cicero Av.
Midlothian IL 60445
708-293-0600

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Store Hours:
Mon - Fri 10am to 9pm
Sat & Sun 10am to 6pm
Call for Holiday hours 708-293-0600

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