New Leopard Gecko, worried.... - Paw Talk - Pet Forums
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 10-10-2008, 12:44 PM Thread Starter
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New Leopard Gecko, worried....

Hi everyone, I just bought my gecko a few days ago and am slightly worried about him/her. I only could afford a 10gal with a 10 gal under tank heater, a moonlight heat lamp, a decent sized log for a hid and a large-ish water dish. I'm using paper towels for substrate until I get paid tomorrow and a Tupperware container with a hole cut in it and paper towels in it for another hide (log is on the warm side). The temperature (according to a stickie thermometer I got that I hope to replace soon) says 86 on the warm side. At night I tilt the lamp up so the temperature is about 76.

Now what is worrying me is that he really doesn't move around a lot. He seems to just lay there all day and all night. I wake up a lot in the night so for the 2 minutes I'm up I check on him and he doesn't really change position. He may change his position once every once and a while but not often. And he doesn't really walk around. I put 5 crickets in his tank about 2 days ago and there are 2 left (one was killed but not eaten). I'm mainly worried about getting him back to the pet store and swapped out (it breaks my heart to think about that , but they know how to treat him if he is sick) before my two week guarantee thing is up.

If you have any ideas they are greatly appreciated.

Also, would it be bad to use pine chips (the ZooMed bark stuff) for his terrarium also? I'm going to use it for my corn snake.
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 10-10-2008, 07:12 PM
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ok i have some qestion for you
1. what is the teperature with a thermomerter tuching the tank bottem(where the heater is) you can use a regular house thermometer for this just make the probe tuch the bottem.
2. how old is gecko
3. is he mostly hang out on warm side or cold?
4. is the under tank heeter cover whole bottem of just half or what


10 gallon is fine for now maybe even better for the gecko be adjusted.
paper towel is actuly the best substrate i wuld stik with that not pine chip
also try makes a moist hide the contaner with paper towel wuld work just mist it with sqirtbottle and put on the warm side

What you is doing is good
i know its hard but buy a sick pet just encurage they not to take care of pets so definatly try take it back if it seem sick.
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 10-11-2008, 11:51 AM Thread Starter
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Well, things seem a little bit better. I bought a small tree with a hide inside of it, ReptiCarpet, and some moss that I put in the Tupperware container a little damp. I also bought the calcium Sprinkle and the cricket water (orange jello looking stuff). I replaced all of the stuff in his terrarium and figured I should just give him a week of just getting used to it.

The temp on the hot side averages 86, 76 on the cold side and on the floor where the heater is I put the thermometer and it was too high for it to read, I'm guessing around 96. The 90 mark was blue, which is usually the square bellow the green (the actual temperature). I want to get some that read higher than that, but alas, I'm broke... again. d:

The gecko is a juvenile, that's all it said ha, I'm guessing under a year, his/her tail hasn't started getting fat, either that means they are young or he/she is starving... (from what I have observed and read) He/she hangs out on the hot side most of the time, but now that I have gotten that tree he/she has spent most of his/her time under it on the cold side. And the under tank heater covers about 1/3 of the bottom on the hot side. I was told I should move it to the cold side, but I don't feel like that is the right thing to do.

Thanks for the help so far, hopefully he/she will be ok and I can keep him/her for a long time.
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 10-11-2008, 06:43 PM
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thats good news hope the gecko will being fine.
88-92 is the best temp for the warm side,so because thermostat costs alot you culd try put paper towel under the carpet to make the temp not high. even after 2 month they tail shuld start be fat. probably your gecko haved be underfeeded but dont worry im sure it will got weight qickly. put jello criket foods in the gecko tank is good it will stop the criket nibbls on the gecko. but i wuld wait maybe 3 day and then feed him/her so it can got adjusted.
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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 10-12-2008, 01:36 AM Thread Starter
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My gradient is officially 86-78. And he/she still hasn't eaten anything. He/she has just spent all of their time in the tree's hide in the shade. Hopefully he/she will start eating.

We are giving the snake and her tank back to the original owner, I want to be able to devote the time/money for a single pet and not neglect the other.

Thanks for the help buddy. HIGHLY appreciated.
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 10-13-2008, 03:31 PM Thread Starter
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Well, he/she has shed, and still won't eat. I even held a cricket infront of him/her and he/she just shook his/her head and walked off. Is he/she just extremely stressed? I'm really worried about him/her, and I was going to take him/her back tonight ): so the store can give him/her the proper veterinary help but I can't seem to find my receipt or my paper they gave me... I'm scared he/she might die ):, and I really don't want that.
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 10-13-2008, 03:59 PM
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How long have you had it? My new gecko didn't eat for a week and a half after I first got him. It's normal for them to not eat for about a week when they go to a new home.

Sometimes they don't like to eat in front of people either. Have you tried food other than crickets? Do you know for sure that the store fed it crickets? It could be use to eating something else, like mealworms. My gecko refuses to eat while I'm watching. I just put mealworms in a dish they can't get out of and he eats then at night.

Even though it's young, it's tail should still be at least slightly fat. My gecko is a little over 2 months old and I got him when he was around 1. Even at 1 month of age he still had a decent size tail. It sounds like your little one is malnourished. The picture on my avatar is of my gecko the day I got him, so you can see what he looked like then.

How big are the crickets you're trying to feed it? The crickets should be about the same size as the distance between the geckos eyes.

Is there anyway you could take it to the vets and see what they say? If not, and you can't get it to eat, I guess you could take it back to the store but depending on what store you got it at I very highly doupt they'll get it to a vet. Remember that it was like that (skinny tail) when you got it there, so it probably wasn't eating well at the store either, and they didn't take it to the vet then.

Next time, if you can, I suggest going to a breeder instead of a pet store. Most of the time a breeder will have much healthier animals, and you'll get more information about the animal your buying such as it's birthday, weight, what it's eating, ect.

Good luck! I reallly really hope you can get it to start eating!


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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 10-15-2008, 02:11 PM
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after a leo shed it eats its skin so its normal for your gecko not to eat rite after a shed. but try offer different foods like mealworms and crikets and waxworms, silworm, butterworms if you can finds this. and definatly leev the foods in overnight. also try not live insects from a can you can leev on the tank bottom. so good luck mate i hopes i all work out.
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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-13-2008, 03:17 PM
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Im a New at this...

Hey guys!
Yesterday (December 12th 2008) my neighbor came over and said he cant keep his gecko anymore.he left me with a 30 gal-long tank full of fine sand substrate with the bottom of a cereal box as shelter, an under-tank heater, and a nice gecko water dish. He was in such a rush he didnt take the time to educate me about this little guy, or even what kind it was!
So right away I started researching, I discovered it is a indeed a Leopard Gecko. I imdediatly went to Petco and bought a large wooden cave as a shelter, I also purchased some small rocks and realistic tree stumps for a more natural desert environment, as well as 12 of the smallest crickets they had. The wooden shelter is on the left side of the tank where it should represent the heated section of the tank, however when my neighbor setup his terrarium he put the heater in the direct center of the tank, underneath, and against the back wall. As for the opposite "cooler" area i have the water dish, and a small cardboard box that I lined with damp paper towels to help this little guys shedding process.
For lighting I have a Red-Light in an adjustable desk lamp, this is on the left side of the tank for the hotter section. After much research and a little bit of studying my Gecko, I understand that he never had a stable environment. I feel that what he has now is much more adequate. As soon as I placed the damp shelter on the right-side he quickly became aware and ventured into the box where I assume he finds compfortably humid.
My Gecko is very, very active. I fed him 2 crickets yesterday throughout the day because i wasnt sure how much he had to eat before he was turned over to my care. I put one in his tank this morning (December 13th) that he hunted in a about 10-15 minutes.
I understand that the sand substrate is hazardous as it can cause impaction. This gecko is large, I would estimate its about 5-6 inches from the tip of the snout to the tip of the tail. And some info says that adults typically dont eat the fine sand, but if so these larger adult geckos can better digest and pass it than smaller younger geckos. He is missing his front left hand, that is now a little nub, he seems to have no trouble walking on it. I understand this is due to not having a damp enough shelter in which to shed. hopefully his new cardboard box and moist papertowels will aid the shed process.
As I am a "Newbie" Leopard Gecko owner I am open to as much hints, tips, and information as possible. Within this first 48 hours my Gecko seems much more compfortable than his old cereal box. Earlier he climbed into my hand where he let me very gently remove a large portion of shedding skin that I placed down on a rock as they like to eat thier sheddings for more nutrients.
Im not sure if I will be able to remove the under-tank heater all the way to the left side but am not typicaly worried about it right now.
Once again I am open to all suggestions and critisism as I would like this guy to live a long and happy life.
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-14-2008, 12:37 PM
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you are doin very well in care for the gecko hes probably much happy already. the sand if hes large enuf shouldnt be a problem but just incase i would switch to paper towel of something because he will probably walk more easy with no hand. also it usulay say on the box dont move a under tank heater but i haved do it with no problem. make sure you feed the crikets high ntrient foods 24 hour before feeding the gecko also get a pure calcium powder (every feeding) and a multiviamin powder (2 time a week) to cover the criket or other foods with. also move the humid box to the warm side or half on the warm side. good luck! do he have a name?
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post #11 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-14-2008, 02:21 PM
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I will definetly go pick up some things to make the crickets more healthy, and maybe some of those mealworms too. This guy definetly seems much more compfortable now. I was thinking about naming him "Nubs" due to his little nub that was once his hand, it will eventualy grow back of time right?
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post #12 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-14-2008, 03:25 PM
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No, his hand won't grow back. If they loose their tails the tails will grow back, but the regrown tail doesn't usually look at nice as the original. Things like toes, hands, arms, etc. they don't grow back.


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post #13 of 22 (permalink) Old 12-15-2008, 04:28 PM
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New Goodies...

Alright I just got back from Petco, I got a desert-like hide for the humid side. I also got some "Food Spray Vitamin Supplement with Beta Carotene" as well as a new substrate called "Eco Earth Compressed Coconut Fiber Expandable Substrate" it came in a brick and so far i have covered his right side of the tank, should i cover the entire bottom? or keep it half? Also i dug out the area under his new humid side for more space. I also got a tub of 50 Superworms and more Crickets. What are your recomended feeding scenduals?
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post #14 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-07-2009, 02:28 PM
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A good idea is to give a waxworm, very tasty treat but only 1-2 at a time! they are very very high in fat, but fat tastes good to a gecko, so if they start eating, then they will continue eating, and also, i need a tip on buying another gecko, a larger one, i'm worried the larger one will bully my little Myhra. And don't use bark, uncolored sand that doesn't clog intestines will be great!
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post #15 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-07-2009, 03:39 PM
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I wouldn't use any substrate at all for fear of impaction.

You can use ceramic tiles or paper. Easy to clean.





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