Today is Gecko Day! If you’re considering adopting a reptile, these cute lizards are a great choice, and are a good pick for beginners. Several types of geckos make good pets, including Leopard geckos and Crested geckos. Regardless of what kind you get, it’s important to pick one that’s in good condition. A Galena, MD offers some insight on this below.
You can tell quite a bit by a gecko’s body condition. Your lizard should look supple, but not round. You shouldn’t see ribs, and your reptilian buddy’s hips and thighs shouldn’t look bony or sunken. Keep in mind that different geckos do have different shapes. The African Fat-tailed gecko, as the name suggests, has a fat tail.
Geckos are quite shy. Though some do warm up to their owners, most will be quite timid at first. It’s not a red flag if your potential pet runs and hides. What would be a concern would be if he is just sitting there listlessly, not reacting to stimuli.
One of the most common health conditions we see in geckos is Metabolic Bone Disease. This happens due to nutritional deficiencies: specifically, a lack of calcium and vitamin D3. The condition causes painful, debilitating degradation of a lizard’s bones, which will make it very difficult for them to walk or move properly.
Geckos will drop their tails if they get frightened, injured, or sometimes from being held that way. While the tail will regrow, the new one will look a bit odd and lumpy. Tha doesn’t mean the gecko is still sick, but it’s something to consider.
Healthy geckos should not have any lumps, bumps, bulges, lesions, cuts, or swelling. Discharge from the eyes, nose, mouth, or vent area are also signs of health problems. You also shouldn’t see any pieces of skin sticking to the little guy, nor any dirt or feces around the vent.
Be sure to get your tiny dinosaur from a reputable store or dealer. If you are adopting a gecko from a private owner, you can ask for veterinary records. Speaking of vets, get your new pet checked out ASAP. This is a good time to get some specific care tips on your little buddy.
Do you have questions about gecko care? As your local Galena, MD vet animal clinic, we’re always here to help!