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Caring for a Leopard Gecko

May 15, 2018

Are you considering adopting a pet lizard? A leopard gecko may be a great option! These little guys are very cute, and can make wonderful pets. A local Covington, GA vet discusses leopard gecko care below.


Leopard geckos are very gentle by nature, though you’ll need to handle your pet gently and frequently to keep him tame and friendly. These colorful lizards aren’t very big: they are usually only about 10 inches when full grown. They can live 20 years with proper care, so make sure you can commit to caring for your lizard for its entire lifespan.


A comfortable, suitable habitat is absolutely crucial to your pet’s health and well-being. Your scaled buddy will need a terrarium that is at least 20 gallons, at the very least. Once you have the terrarium picked out, you’ll need to add a suitable substrate. Some good options are turf, butcher paper, flat stones, or pea gravel. Leopard geckos also need a few hidey-holes. Include one that contains moss or vermiculite, which help with shedding. Add rocks, plants, driftwood, and climbing branches to your pet’s home. This will make it look nice, and will also give your little buddy places to explore and hang out.


Leopard geckos don’t need any specific lighting, so your pet should be fine with a regular low-watt tank light. We do recommend setting it to a timer, so your reptilian friend gets proper light cycles. As for heat, you will need to keep your pet’s habitat within certain temperature parameters. Since geckos—like all reptiles—are cold-blooded, they regulate their temperature by moving from hot to cool spots and then back again. Your little pal will need two different temperature zones. The warmer one should stay between 85-90 °F, and the cooler one between 73-75 °F. Use under-tank heating, instead of heating rocks, as it’s much safer.


Leopard geckos eat live bugs, such as crickets, mealworms, and waxworms. Always buy these creepy-crawlies from pet stores, as wild bugs can carry parasites and bacteria. You’ll need to dust the bugs with nutritional powder before giving them to your pet. This is called gut loading. Your reptilian pal will also need calcium and, of course, fresh water. Ask your vet for specific advice.

Please contact us, your Covington, GA animal clinic, with any questions about leopard geckos. We’re happy to help!

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