Are you considering adopting a gecko? There are many different types of geckos. While they each have slightly different care needs, they all require great habitats. In fact, as with any reptile, getting the proper environment is half the battle as far as care goes. A Bowmanville, ON vet offers some tips on this below.
Choosing the Cage
There are some things to keep in mind when picking the habitat. Size of course is a crucial one. Exact requirements can vary a bit, depending on the type of gecko you have and how old they are. Most adult geckos should have at least 20 gallons. Juveniles can have smaller tanks. We recommend getting one with glass sides. As far as shape goes, if you’re getting an arboreal gecko, such as a crested or tokay gecko, choose something tall enough to allow them some climbing room. Make sure the cover closes tightly, especially if you have cats.
Proper lighting is very important to your little dinosaur’s well-being. Geckos require light and heat. You don’t need special lights; a 12-watt bulb will do just fine. However, you will need the lights set on a timer. At night, you may need to use infrared light for heat. Ask your vet for more information.
Reptiles have very specific temperature requirements. One end of the habitat should be warmer than the other. You can lower the temperatures a little at night. We recommend getting an under-tank heater. Avoid heating rocks, as they can cause dangerous burns. Ask your vet for specific advice.
Reptile cages can make beautiful decorative pieces. Add lots of plants. You can use non-toxic ones or fake ones. Driftwood, small statues, and pretty rocks can also make the habitat look nice. For substrate, you can use reptile carpet, butcher paper, or even newspaper. (Tip: put large leaves or rocks over it.) Don’t use sand, especially for young lizards, as it can cause potentially-fatal gastrointestinal issues. Gravel, sawdust, and corncob are also best avoided.
Your little buddy will need a few hides. One of these should contain moss or vermiculite, to help with shedding. If you have more than one lizard, provide enough hides for all. Last but not least, add dishes for food and water.Please contact us, your Bowmanville, ON veterinary clinic, with any questions about your gecko. We’re here to help!