Your pet lizard's home should be set up and acclimatised before you consider the actual purchase. When you're ready to buy your pet lizard, a few pointers will help you choose a healthy one...
Is his mouth a healthy pale pink? Green, white or yellow patches on his tongue may indicate illness.
Is the lizard's breathing regular? If he appears to ‘pant' open mouthed, his recent living conditions may be too hot, or he may have a respitory infection.
Are his eyes bright and clear? Look out for a runny nose or eyes.
Has the lizard a good amount of flesh coverage? You shouldn't be able to see any protruding bones, eg: hip bones or tail bones.
Is his skin supple? Dull, dry skin is a good indication of dehydration.
Check out the lizard and his living quarters for cleanliness. If he has fecal matter on his underside, he may have been kept in overcrowded conditions. If he has fecal matter on his back, this could be an indication of weakness - kept in overcrowded conditions he may have been unable to climb to the top of the pile.
Take time to handle the lizard, see if he's active and alert.
Learning how a pet lizard should appear and how he should be kept, before you go to purchase, will give you a good understanding of whether or not you're buying from someone who knows about lizards and is taking good care of them.
Care should be taken when handling any lizard - a percentage, thought to be as high as 70% of pet lizards carry the salmonella virus, which can be passed to humans. Always wash your hands after touching pet lizards, or entering his cage.