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Joan, Veterinary Technician
Category: Reptile
Satisfied Customers: 18210
Experience:  35+ years experience as veterinary tech and 40+ years experience doing reptile rescues.
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my leopard geckos back legs look broken. what can i do to

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my leopard geckos back legs look broken. what can i do to help?


Can you tell me about your set up?


Hides? Moist?






Customer: replied 7 years ago.

Hi Joan,


Supplements?: We don't give our Gecko supplements. We were never told we should when we purchased the Gecko and have talked to a few pet store staff about his diet. Hopefully this is something we can still address and start implementing right away.


Can you tell me about your set up?: We have a coconut, a hammock, moss, a fake plant and a water dish. No heating lamp but a heating pad on bottom of the outside of cage.


Substrate?: Zoo meds eco carpet.


Hides?: Coconut.


Moist?: We spray tap on moss every day and fill water dish completely.


Temps?: Mid seventy in day mid sixty at night.


Humidity?: Dont have a reading on that.




I suspect theLeo is suffereing from Metabolic Bond Disease. This would cause the inability to use the limbs. All reptiles need a daily source of calcium to helpkeep their bones and organs working properly. You need to get some plain calcium and dust all prey daily as well as keeping a dish of calciumpowder in the tank at all times. With the problem of inabilty to use the back legs the Leo may need to get a shot of calcium from a Herp Vet., and an extra supplement for calcium. In most cases MBD can be reversed with the proper care. I wouold be happy to locate a herp vet for you with a state or Country. Joan

I want to give you my care sheet to help you with your Gecko. Please read it and then hit reply for further help. Sand Impaction


Leopard Gecko Care Sheet

The Leopard Gecko is originally from Pakistan, India, and a few other countries in Asia. They actually live on hard rocky outcrops and they are nocturnal (active at night). They prefer temperatures between 82 and 88 degrees all day and night. They grow to between 8 to 11 inches. Leopard Geckos are available in a wide range of colors and patterns which are the result of selective captive breeding. These include albino, ghost, striped, jungle, Leucistic and high yellow. These colors have been made possible through selective captive breeding. Leopard Geckos make wonderful pets for almost any age person. Leopard Geckos also make good long term pets. They can live over twenty years. Never grab by tail it will break off. Leopard Gecko Housing: A male Leopard Gecko should never be housed in the same cage as another male leopard gecko because they will fight and possibly kill one another. A male can be housed with several females without any problems. I do not advise housing leopard geckos in the same cage with any other reptiles. A single Leopard Gecko can be kept in a ten gallon tank. For a male and a few females a twenty gallon tank or larger should be used. The cage should have a screen lid on top of it to prevent any escapes. Leopard geckos need places to hide and sleep during the day so you must provide a couple of hiding spots. They need a warm hiding spot and a cold humid hiding spot. Just put one hide box on the side with the heat light and put the humid hide box on the side that does not have the heat light. I actually prefer an under the tank heater for heat source rather than a light since the geckos are Nocturnal. For the humid hide box, Paper Towels work well and easily replaced inside a hide box. You can make your own humid hide box from a small plastic shoe box or from a margarine conatiner. Cut a hole in one end of the container and place moist paper towel inside it. The humid box should be cleaned out every week and re moistened. A humid hide box is needed so that the gecko can go in it when it needs to shed. The humidity helps the old skin come off.
Substrate: There is an abundance of products on the market that claim to be safe substrates. All Loose Substrates (Please note the link above) however are not safe to use. A substrate is what you put on the bottom of the cage for the lizard to walk around on. If a Leopard Gecko ingests any of the substrate accidentally, the substrate must pass through the digestive system. Trust me they will ingest substrate, sometimes on purpose. If it does not easily pass through the digestive system compaction will occur. Compaction is an extreme blockage of the digestive tract and is often fatal. Some substrates that I consider unsafe because they can cause compaction are: sand, bark, Calci sand, crushed walnut shells, lizard litter, gravel, aquarium gravel, and coconut fiber. The safest substrate is using paper towels or plain newspaper, non-stick shelf liner , cage carpet or ceramic tile. For any leopard geckos that are younger than six months I advise using paper towels or plain newspaper until they are at least six months old. Calcium sand is not fully digested no matter what it claims. The stuff just does not break down completely. . Leopard Gecko Heating and Temperature: The cage should be between 82 to 88 degrees all day and night. There is two basic ways to heat the cage. One is to use a under tank heater like heat tape. The other is to use a black, or blue night incandescent heat light. I prefer to use a heat light. For a 10 gallon tank a 60 watt bulb should work depending on room temperature. Place the heat light on one end of the cage. By putting the heat light on one end of the cage it keeps that side warmest and allows the gecko to move to the warmer side with the light or to the colder side without the light as needed to regulate body temperature.
NEVER EVER USE A HOT ROCK, HEAT ROCK, OR ANY SIMILAR PRODUCT. Hot rocks heat unevenly and are notorious for causing terrible thermal burns. Do not buy a hot rock and if you know anyone who uses one, tell them to throw it away. Leopard Gecko Feeding: Leopard Geckos will do very well on a diet of mealworms and crickets. I like to provide some variety in feeder insects to create a more balanced diet. Feeder insects I use are silkworms, mealworms, roaches and crickets with the legs on one side of the body pulled off. Crickets will bite your geckos while they sleep, these bites are prone to infection, so if you pull off one side of their legs then they cannot move around the cage and get to the gecko and also this prevents the crickets from climbing out of the cage. Gut load feeder insects for at least a day before putting them in with the gecko. Feed geckos insects that are not larger than the width of the head of the gecko.
Adults can be fed superworms, though I advise only feeding a couple superworms at a time. Leopard Gecko Vitamin/Mineral Supplement: For young geckos dust the feeder insects every other feeding or place a small feeder dish with supplement in it and some mealworms in the cage. For adults and babies place a shallow dish or a plastic lid in the cage with a teaspoon of calcium powder on it. The gecko will lick the calcium powder as needed. You still need to dust feeder insects every other feeding though with a vitamin supplement for young geckos. Adults use vitamin supplement once a week. Leopard Gecko Water: Use a shallow water bowl, fill with water as needed. Remove bowl from cage and clean out weekly.

Do Not Feed Pinkies



Customer: replied 7 years ago.

Are pinkies a type of cricket?


where could I get calcuim powder?


Do you think you could send me the adress of a Herp. vet in victorville or san berdino county?


How many watts should I use in a heat lamp for a ten month old gecko if I buy a heat lamp?


My cousin also told me the skin that has not come off his feet from shedding is bad for him and I think she tried to remove some. I dont know about this but she has had lepord geckos before. I'm not sure if this part of his problem.




Pinkies are new born mice. They can cause problems if fed. The calcium can be purchased at all pet shops.You can get Flukers w/o Phosphorus or Reptical for the calcium. The skin on the feet can constrict and cut off blood flow.You can give the Leo a nice soak in warm water for about 20-30 ming and gently take a q-tip to help rub off the unshed skin. You can use a black light bulb for extra heat since they are nocturnal and the light is too much. A 60 watt would supply extra heat and not diaturb the Leo. The mosit hide suggested in the care sheet will help with that problem. I will give you a link for Vets in CA. Joan

Herp Vets:

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
thank you so much. my leos legs look fine today. you are a big help. we went and got calcuim powder and a heating lamp with nightlight glo 60 watt bulb. Hopefully he'll be ok now. thanks for your help again.


Glad to hear the Leo is doing better! Keep up the good work! Please do not forget to accept if the answer was helpful and positive feedback is appreciated. Joan

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