Do you find reptiles fascinating? Have you been thinking about getting a pet snake or lizard? If so, you may want to consider adopting a leopard gecko. These little guys are super cute, and make very charming pets! Read on as a local Scottsdale, AZ vet discusses caring for a leopard gecko.
Meet The Leopard Gecko
Leopard geckos don’t typically grow over 10 inches long, and come in many different colors. As long as you handle your miniature dinosaur gently and regularly, your scaled pet will likely be quite tame and gentle. These cute lizards can be lots of fun to watch! They do live quite a while, though—up to 20 years—so, before adopting one, be sure you can commit to taking care of him for his entire life.
Your scaled buddy will need a tank that is at least 20 gallons, though bigger is better. For substrate, you can use turf, pea gravel, flat stones, or butcher paper. Make sure your gecko has some hidey-holes to retreat to. One of your pet’s hides should be moist, and should have moss or vermiculite in it. This helps with shedding. To make your little friend’s home look nicer, you can add rocks, safe plants, and perhaps climbing branches or driftwood. As far as light goes, a low-watt bulb, with a timer set on a 12-hour cycle, will do nicely.
Although leopard geckos don’t need special lighting, they do have specific temperature requirements. One end of your lizard’s tank should be around 85-90 °F. The other end should be cooler, around 73-75 °F. We don’t recommend using heating lamps or hot rocks, as they can be dangerous, and can even burn your little buddy. Opt for under-tank heating instead.
Leopard geckos are super cute, but they aren’t for everyone. One of the reasons many people decide not to adopt one is the fact that these guys have rather unappetizing eating habits. You’ll need to offer your little dinosaur things often referred to as ‘creepy-crawlies,’ such as mealworms, waxworms, and crickets. Before you feed your pet his dinner, you’ll have to dust his food with nutritious powder. Make sure you have the stomach for doing this!
Do you have any questions about caring for a pet leopard gecko? We can help! Please feel free to contact us, your local Scottsdale, AZ pet hospital, anytime.