Reptile Burns

Reptiles are just as susceptible—if not more susceptible—to burns than other pets. Considering they often live with heat lamps and heating pads directly in their enclosures, burns are a real threat to your pet’s health. Here, a Dunedin veterinarian tells you more.


The most common cause of reptile burns may be heat lamps or heating pads. These devices can be set too hot, or placed too close to our reptiles and cause burns. There is also the possibility that our pets can accidentally touch them or fall onto them, causing scalding. Call your Dunedin vet to ask about the proper heat settings and location for your reptile’s heat lamp or pad.

Immediate Treatment

For almost any burn on your reptile, you’ll want to take him or her to your Dunedin veterinarian as soon as possible for treatment. You can apply some immediate care at home, though—do your best to clean the affected area, then apply antibiotic ointment to prevent infection. Ask your Dunedin veterinarian about what sort of ointment you can have on hand that will be safe to use on your pet.

Once your Dunedin veterinarian sees your reptile, he or she may treat with other methods, including fluid therapy for severe burns. Your vet might apply protective gauze or other materials to block the burn area. Ask about recovery time and care.

Preventing Burns

It’s much easier to prevent burns than deal with their aftermath. Make sure your reptile’s heat lamp or heating pad is set up properly and that it isn’t getting too hot. Check on your pet to make sure he isn’t getting too close to the heat source. Ask your Dunedin veterinarian about the proper temperature settings for your animal.

Also make sure your reptile can’t get to areas where they may be an open flame, or into the kitchen where they might encounter boiling water or hot surfaces. If a burn does accidently occur, though, act quickly to allow your reptile the best chance at a full recovery.


Leave a Reply