Leopard Gecko Care – Habitat, Diet, Heating, etc

Leopard Gecko Care – Habitat, Diet, Heating, etc

Hello! Hope you are doing well! Curious to know more about the leopard gecko care basics or interested in getting your very own gecko as a pet? Many people today keep these lizards at home as pets!

Anyways, let us take a step further. We are going to dive into the world of leopard geckos. We will cover the basics of leopard gecko care. Some categories we cover are appearance, diet, behavior, housing, lighting requirements, and FAQ.

Leopard Gecko Overview

  • Leopard Gecko Scientific Name: Eublepharismacularius
  • Primary habitat/home: Leopard Gecko can be found in a Rocky environment, desert and grasslands.
  • Lifespan Of Leopard Gecko: They can live up to 27 years in a free habitat, but if kept at home, they can live between 6 and 10 years if they are well taken care of.

5 Reasons Why Leopard Geckos Make Great Pets!

Let’s start with an amazing video showing you why you should definately choose this gecko as your pet!

Appearance

There are variations in their sizes determined by gender. The females are usually shorter while they male is longer. The females are generally between 7 and 8 inches while the male is between 7 and 10 inches.

Morphs

There are a wide variety of leopard gecko morphs out on the market. Five of them are listed below. We won’t cover these in detail in this guide.

  • Super Giant
  • Tangerine
  • Blizzard
  • Halloween Mask
  • Baldy

Leopard Gecko Care

Are you preparing to get your new pet? Or you already got one, and you wnat more information on how to house and care for these little creatures? Read below!

If you are planning on getting more than one leopard gecko, there are rules you should follow to ensure the safety and well-being of your pet.

  • You should not keep the same gender together in the same enclosure except for the female leopard gecko of similar size.
  • Inside their enclosure, do not use sand inside it as substrates. Line it with a paper, towel, tiles, or any other options outside sand.

Leopard Gecko Behaviour And Temperment

leopard gecko terrarium

Leopard geckos are generally quite docile and very easy to tame. They also are not prone to biting and usually quite slow at moving. They do have very unique personalities and are known to get vocal. This is really true when they are hungry!

If you happen to have more than 1 leopard gecko in a terrarium, watch for any tail waving actions. What this means is that one of them (or all of them) feel threatened and wants to attack right away. At this point, it is best to seperate them. This is mostly true if you have 2 males in the same tank.

Housing

Leopard geckos need somewhere to hide and be housed. They need to feel comfortable like they are in their own habitat. You can start with a nice 10 gallon aquarium tank and fill it with the necessary accessories such as foliage, bedding, food and water. A leopard gecko terrarium is pretty easy to setup and there is a wide variety of products on the market for them.

You can also use of a small plastic container when they are younger and smaller. For this, you would make holes around the container for the gecko to breathe. If you do make holes, make sure the spaces are smooth to avoid your pet being cut by the rough holes you create in the plastic container. You can save yourself all of this stress by getting a simple leopard gecko tank that is sold in pet stores.

Temperature and Humidity

The leopard gecko’s habitat needs to be warm because they come from the same warm climate. With this is mind, the tank needs to have a warm and cool side. Simply install a heat lamp on one end of the terrarium and then measure the temperature of each side with a thermometer.

  • Their habitat needs to be between 85 and 95 degrees on the warmer side.
  • The other side needs to be 10 degrees cooler than the warm side.

Your leopard gecko will prefer 10% – 30% humidity in their enclosure. It is best to buy a hygrometer to ensure the humidity will stay in the preferred range.

Lighting

Each day, your leopard gecko needs 12 hours of light. Use a night specific bulb if you want to see what they are doing at night time. You wouldn’t want to disorient them with a bright light at night.

Health and Symptoms

Your leopard gecko might experience some issues when they first come into their new habitat. It is recommended to let them settle in for a few days before you go touching and holding them. If you notice the symptoms below, you might want to take them to your nearest vet.

  • They are hiding way more than normal.
  • Losing weight because they are eating or drinking less water.
  • They have swollen joints.
  • Discharge is coming from their eyes, nose or mouth.
  • They have discolored skin and you notice shedding problems.
  • Their droppings are runny for more than 2 days.

Common health issues of leopard gecko includes:

  • Impaction
  • Metabolic bone disease
  • Parasites
  • Egg binding
  • Burns

Leopard Gecko Food And Diet

The gecko’s best food for feeding are mealworms or crickets. Waxworms or superworms are a delicacy for the gecko and should be fed to them once a week if you want to. Leopard geckos do not eat fruits or vegetables and definately no pinky mice!

Gut Loading

The insects should be given a nutritious powdered diet for 12 hours before being fed to your gecko. “Gut loading” is what the process is called. This process is very important to the health of your leopard gecko. You can pick up hog mash or chick mash at feed stores. All you have to do is put the insects in a small tub with the mash and a piece of potato. The potato is a water source. Just let them sit in there for 12 hours.

Insect Dusting

Another way to get your gecko the nutrition it needs is by dusting the insects with powder. Just place the powder and bugs into a plastic bag and shake it to give them a nice vitamin enriched coating. Be careful when putting the insects into the gecko’s enclosure because you don’t want the powder to get into the gecko’s eyes.

Feeding Times and Amounts

Here are some simple guidlines on the amount of food and how frequently your pet should and can eat.

  • 2 insects for every 1 inch of your pet’s total length.
  • 1 meal every other day is fine for your leopard gecko.

Lets say you bought a new 3 inch gecko. It would be able to get 6 mealworms, 3 to 4 times a week. Don’t be alarmed if your pet starts eating its shed skin also. That is completely normal!

Water

They need a small water bowl that they are capable of crawling in and out of. Fresh water should be added daily. Do not add any vitamin drops to their water.

Leopard Gecko Care FAQ

Do leopard geckos like to be held?

They enjoy being held gently at a later age.

Are leopard geckos easy to take care of?

Geckos are easy to care for if you maintain the temperature and humidity of the gecko’s house.

How expensive is a leopard gecko?

It varies depending on the morph and by seller.

How often do you need to feed a leopard gecko?

You need to feed them a minimum of once every other day. Ensure you give them 2 insects for every 1 inch of their total length.

What human food can leopard geckos eat?

Highly advised against this if you want a healthy pet.

Do leopard geckos bite?

They are very docile and usually do not bite. If they do, it isn’t dangerous.

Should I spray water on my leopard gecko?

No, but you can spray or dip inside warm water if the gecko itself is having a hard time during the shedding process.

Do geckos like to be touched?

It will take time for them to get used to you. As it gets older, you should hold them atleast 15 minutes a day to get them used to it.

Why do leopard geckos lick you?

They lick because they are after food and water most of the time.

Do leopard geckos like to cuddle?

They like to cuddle with a female counterpart. Two males together is a bad story.

Conclusion

There you have it! This was just some basic leopard gecko care guidelines that you can follow for your new (or old) pet. Hopefully this was very informative for you. Was anything missing or want to learn more? Just post a comment below and we will answer your question, thanks!

Joshua

Having grown up with geckos and a bearded dragon as pets, my passion for reptiles has sparked once again! When I'm not writing about reptiles, I can be found gaming and maintaining physical shape.

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