MENTOR, Ohio — Three months after being injured during an altercation at a Painesville Perkins restaurant, Copper the iguana is headed home.
After caring for the iguana since April, the Lake Humane Society reunited Copper with her original owner on Friday.
“We are happy to report that the iguana is now reunited with its rightful owner,” said Painesville Police Chief Dan Waterman. “We wish Copper many calm and uneventful years ahead.”
On April 16, Copper was injured when 49-year-old Arnold J. Teeter swung the iguana around his head and threw her across the room at a restaurant manager. Teeter was later arrested and has been charged with disorderly conduct, resisting arrest, and cruelty to animals.
Copper was placed in the care of the Lake Humane Society and was seen by a veterinarian in May for a re-examination of a fractured leg. After initially believing surgery would be required, doctors found the leg was healing well enough that it did not require surgery. She also was suffering from metabolic bone disease and was missing a portion of her tail.
Copper's care was made possible by donations made to Lake Humane’s Angel Fund, a special fund for pets with extensive medical needs. Supporters from all over the country made contributions and gave Copper a second chance at a happy and healthy life.
The wild adventure for Copper began last year, when she escaped from the home of her original and rightful owner, Jordan. She found her way into a tree in the yard next door. After hearing about the April 16th altercation, Jordan contacted the Painesville Police Department and stated that she believed that Copper was hers. Humane Society officials confirmed the ownership after reviewing photos and medical records.