The Tale of Lizzie the Lizard

FAIR WARNING!!!! This post has some icky images of lizards that you MAY not want to see! So don't say I didn't warn you!!!!!!!

***I realize that many of my family members have already heard Part 1 of this story. But never fear my dear friends, Part 2 unraveled in our backyard just today!***

On June 27, 2008, Kennedy and I were playing out in the backyard minding out own business. Isabel the dog was sunning herself while we played in the water. Soon, Isabel started running around like a mad dog! We couldn't figure out what she was doing! She was scurrying under the deck, running around the hot tub, burying her nose under pots, plants, the steps, the grill....being crazy!!!!

Here is is UNDER the deck stairs!!!

Soon, Kennedy and I saw a little lizard run under the hot tub stairs. Oh cool! A lizard! You all know how much Kennedy loves animals (see previous post with worm photos)! So we HAD to watch the lizard!

Well, Isabel is driving herself crazy trying to catch the silly thing and Kennedy is getting agravated that Isabel is in her view of the lizard. So I put Isabel in the front yard for awhile. Kennedy and I enjoy watching the lizard but eventually go back to playing in the water. Isabel rejoins us in the back yard.

But Isabel is still going nuts! She knocks over a pot and breaks it. Flowers and leaves start flying off my plants! I start yelling at Isabel and Kennedy yells "Izzie, you are ruining everything!!!!". The dog chases the lizard under the grill and I decide Izzie must go inside.

So Kennedy begins looking for the lizard again. She says "Mom! Look!! I found da tail!!"

"What?!" I say. "Where is the lizard?"

I walk over to where she is crouched over the rocks, directly behind the grill. I look down and what do I see? A LIZARD TAIL! NOT CONNECTED TO THE LIZARD!!! AND IT IS WAGGING!!!


I scream that Izzie must have killed it! But then we see the tail-less lizard just roaming through the yard. Gross. Just gross.

So we have to call all the grandparents and tell them the story of how Izzie bit off the lizard tail!!! We are horrified that our beloved little pet could rip off the tail of a harmless little lizard!

Later that evening, we go to show Daddy the tail. But it is gone. We fear our beloved dog may have eaten it. (are you grossed out yet?)

We later learn that lizards often lose their tails to help them escape when they are attacked. The lizard will drop the tail for the predator to eat and the lizard will run. Read about it here. So hopefully the dog didn't bite it off. And I read that lizards often come back and EAT their tails!! EEWW!!! Tails are a good portion of a lizard's body weight so they want to eat it. Again, this was good news...maybe the dog DIDN'T eat the tail!

here you can read why the lone tail was still wagging!

Or you can watch this video of a wagging tail!!! Not MY video!

++Fast forward to today, July 8th, 2008.++

Kennedy and I return from the grocery story to find Isabel the dog running around like a nut on the patio again. So I run out there and see a lizard again!!!!! I put her in the house and call Kennedy out to see the lizard! We are so excited!!!!! We assume it is our same lizard coming back to visit!!! So I snap photos again. We have now named her Lizzie the Lizard. Isn't she pretty!?!?!

I am wondering, could this really be the same lizard? Is it that dumb to return? It does appear to have scars on it and such. And if you look closely at the end of the tail, it looks kinda funky.

Anyway, I make the mistake of eventually letting Isabel the dog back out. She goes balistic and chases the poor thing under the grill again. I feel bad for the lizard so the 3 of us go inside.

Later, Kennedy and I venture out again. We see poor Lizzie the Lizard lieing behind the grill........

Poor thing. Sans tail yet again. I assume the lizard is dead and have to tell Kennedy that the dog killed it. But she says, "Mom, it's mouth is open." I look and the mouth is shut. So I ask, "It was open earlier or it just opened now?" And she says "It just opened." So I watch it and sure enough, it's tiny little mouth opens and seems to be gasping for air. YIPPEE!!!!! Izzie didn't kill Lizzie!!!!!! Hooray!!!!!!
So I tell Kennedy we need to go inside to let the poor lizard regain its strength. And I am secretly hoping this is another defense mechanism the lizard has. Just make the predator THINK it is dead!

So an hour later we head back out. Bad news. Lizzie the Lizard is most definitely dead. Now movement. No breathing. Stiff body. So Kennedy has fun poking it with a stick.

And just for the record, it was likely NOT the same lizard. It can take weeks to months for a tail to grow back!

**ETA: Many people have commented on how large this lizard is. I think the photos are deceiving! It is only about 6-8 inches long!!!!!

On a lighter note, the 6+ baby bunnies that were nested in our yard DID live long enough to leave the nest with their mother. Izzie DID leave them alone. Thank goodness.


erin said...

wow! what an awesome story! thanks for sharing, esp those cool photos!
we had a golden retriever growing up and i remember we used to catch smaller lizards in the backyard and then try to keep them as pets. that is until the snakes came into the garage after them. our dog was so afraid! what a wimp, we loved him anyway, ok long enough post.

Kim Ryden said...

You crack me up too! Don't you just love the internet that you can learn so much in such a short amount of time?!

Michelle Lanning said...

That is a huge lizard! We have itty bitty ones here! Yuck! Well at least Kenna had fun huh?

Kelly Todd said...

Holy smokes (teachable moment!), I never knew that about lizards. Poor guy, though. I always feel guilty when my cat brings home its prey. The joy of having animals!

Danielle said...

WOW, what a story! and pics to go along with it!!! :)

Jennifer said...

That lizard is huge!! I was really amazed...we don't have those here. What a fun and exciting story!! Cute baby bunnies, too. Glad they made it.

kristy.lynn said...

what a little adventure you have waiting for you in your backyard!
sad to hear the lizard didn't make it, but glad to hear the rabbits did!!

and that is ONE HUGE LIZARD! is that normal size for your area? you should see our lizards. they look like pipsqueaks now!

Anonymous said...

What an adventure! Better you than me, I think I would have freaked out if there had been a lizard in my yard! LOL

Heather said...

Oh my goodness--what an adventure! Yay for the baby bunnies!

AbbieTorroll said...

What a great story. Your so cute. Great lizard pics. and those bunnies are too cute!

Michelle said...

LOL...what a story!
And lesson!! :)
Too cute...Madison would have FREAKED over that lizard!! LOL She is not into bugs or anything like that...{sigh}.