First, my geiko stopped using the restroom for two weeks. Then he started again. Now he is not eating, losing lots of

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Customer: First, my geiko stopped using the restroom for two weeks. Then he started again. Now he is not eating, losing lots of weight. attempts to eat a cricket, but it gets away. is not fast enough. i hold the cricket but he wont bite...i am worried about him. he is a leopard geiko. I bought some crickets with calcium on them and bought some powdered medicine...gave to him a few times, but not getting better....please help.  when i first got him, he was fat and got fatter.  would eat about 4 to 5 crikets a day.  now, barely.  i feel so bad for him.  i don't have enough money to take to a vet.  so this was a good alternative, i hope i am not wrong.
Answered by Jav917 in 1 hour 11 years ago
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Jav917
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27,324 satisfied customers

Specialities include: Reptile Veterinary, Herp Veterinary, Exotic Animal Medicine, Amphibian Veterinary

Hello,

Can you tell me about the set up?

Diet?

Substrate?

Supplements?

Passing stool?

Heat source? Temps?

When was last shed?

Joan

Customer
I have him in a aquarium big enough, I believe...maybe one that is 2 or 3 gallons. Recommended by the people who sold him to me at Pet Smart. I feed him crickets (live). I tried the worms in the jar, would not eat. Tried crickets in the can, would not eat. would eat only live ones. No supplements. Heat source: have a heating pad under his aquarium that is always on. He seems to shed all of the time. Substrate: are you referring to the foundation of his little house. I have sand mixed with calcium..well don't know if it sand...it is white. sold to me by the people at pet smart. I tried to talk to their experts that work in the reptile dept every time. i bought some calcium packages but put them on the crickets. he would not eat....i never even knew he needed calcium....so what do you think?
Customer
I have him in a aquarium big enough, I believe...maybe one that is 2 or 3 gallons. Recommended by the people who sold him to me at Pet Smart. I feed him crickets (live). I tried the worms in the jar, would not eat. Tried crickets in the can, would not eat. would eat only live ones. No supplements. Heat source: have a heating pad under his aquarium that is always on. He seems to shed all of the time. Substrate: are you referring to the foundation of his little house. I have sand mixed with calcium..well don't know if it sand...it is white. sold to me by the people at pet smart. I tried to talk to their experts that work in the reptile dept every time. i bought some calcium packages but put them on the crickets. he would not eat....i never even knew he needed calcium....so what do you think? am i to expect a reply. this is a strange system...never used before...

Hello,

You have been given some poor information from the Pets shop, but this a is not unusual as we see this problem all the time. The Safe Sand in the tank that they sold you over time can cause major problems with reptiles. It is sold as a safe edible substrate, but in reality, it is very dangerous. You can read about it here: Sand impaction: this shows the X rays: http://www.herpcenter.com/leopard-gecko-sand-impaction-xrays.html The sand can also cause corneal ulcers and skin problems.

 

You need to keep a dish of plain calcium in the tank at all times and dust all prey with calcium as this prevents Metabolic Bone Disese. Even if you are feeding the crickets with a calcium supplement it is not enough.

 

The tank you are using is too small. It should be at least a 10 gallon and a 20 gallon is prefered. You can use paper, cage carpet, slate or non stick shelf liner for a substrate. It is safe and cannot be ingested. You need to have an under the tank heater to help with keeping the heat proper in the tank.

 

At this point we can try some first aid by giving a soak in 50/50 warm water and plain Pedialyte. Mix the solution in a shallow dish and soak for 20 mins. Gently massage the abdomen while in the soak. This will help with dehydration. You can mix some plain meat flavored(chicken, Beef or veal) baby food with some calcium powder and drop on the snout and allow the Leo to lick it off. We do not force feed because it can cause aspiration into the lungs. I would like you to continue to try and feed the live prey and dust with calcium. Please hi reply and I can further assist you afetr you read the care sheet. Joan

 

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. 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

Jav91740798.8829940625
Customer
Jo Ann, thank you for the information...however, could you clarify a couple of things: dust all prey???are you referring to the crickets? Place calcium in a dish..are you referring to powdered calcium they sell at pet store for geikos? Soak with mix of pedialyte & warm water....hold him down for 20 min in this solution? final question: i thought that the crickets had to move and entise the geiko or the geiko would not eat....but you say to tear off their legs on one side..correct....

Hello,

The prey would be crickets, worms(whichever type you are feeding) I use silk worms, or any other types of feeders that I mentioned.

 

You need to keep a dish(I use a milk bottle cap) of calcium available in the tank at all times. You can get the one with Vitamin D3 called reptomin.

 

The soak can be done is a small container, the mixture just has to come up under the legs. The area where the go potty is called the vent. the can absorb fluids through that area to help with dehydration.

 

Geckos love live prey. I like to use silk worms, phoenix worms, dubia roaches and crickets. Super worms are a great treat. Since the gecko is a little weak we can supplement the diet with the baby food I suggested and still feed crickets. If you take the legs off one side it can slow them down, or you can use a pair of tweezers and hold the cricket for the gecko to eat.

 

I am so sorry you had gotten such poor information from the Pet shop, but to most pets shops the animals are disposable and the supplies they sell is where the money is made. Joan

Jav91740798.9101788194
Customer
Jo Ann, please accept my apology but you give me great information but i need it to be a bit more specific...such as do i place the soak where they go to bathroom....and do i get the calcium at a pharmacy or pet shop...tit is not real specific....is a superworm an earthworm and what is a silk worm...i promise my last question....
Customer
one more thing...he has not gone to the potty very much this last week...i was placing him under warm water which is what they told me to do. i forgot to mention that i have to put some drops in his water to take the clorine out, i think...could that be the problem...
Customer
Jo Ann i hope you respond i have to leave...but i am accepting what answers you have given me so far...suggestions...you have been great..thank you so much...hope to hear the rest of the answers...thank you, linda

Hello,

I am here to educate you and make sure you have the correct information. The Calcium can be purchased at the pet shop. Reptical or Flukers calcium are sold in the pet shop. They run about $4.00 for a jar. As far as feeder insects, the silk worms have to be ordered off line. You can order many different feeders here: www.Mulberryfarms.com or www.coastalsilkworms.com Some feeder insects like meal worms, super worms (which are large size meal worms), wax worms and crickets can be purchased at most pet shops. I usually do the soak in the kitchen sink, by usuing a gladware disposable container or small rubbermade container and put the mixture in it and place the Gecko in it. I stay with the gecko at all times, as they can be fast and try to escape. Being in the sink in the soak is safer to preven escape. You can also keep a water dish in the enclosure for the gecko to drink out of. Joan

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