How to Keep Geckos as Pets

Written by kristal smith
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How to Keep Geckos as Pets
Healthy geckos are clean with bright, alert eyes. (leopard gecko image by Ivan Polushkin from

Geckos are small lizards native to Pakistan. Geckos often live happily with humans as long as they are properly fed and cared for. Geckos cost between £52 and £162. These little creatures are often sold at pet shops. The most beneficial way to care for your gecko, is by keeping the aquarium clean, giving him fresh food and water often, and by placing them in an environment with an appropriate amount of heat.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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    Place the tank in a location of the home that can be supervised if children and visitors are around. Geckos need their tanks to be around 31.1 degrees Celsius in the day, and around 23.9 degrees Celsius at night. Use a heat lamp or another type of tank heater from your local pet store. Keep an enclosure over the top of the tank that protects the gecko from escaping but allows air to pass through. Keep a thermometer sticker on the tank to monitor the temperature.

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    Provide nutritious food. Younger and older geckos may enjoy fresh shredded greens shredded. However, by nature, geckos catch live insects to eat. Meal worms, fruit flies and crickets are popular choices. Crickets are often the main source of food for a gecko. They are the most nutritious as compared to other insects. Choose smaller crickets so the gecko has no problems handling them. Some owners feed the crickets healthy items, such as orange slices, fish flakes and vegetables, before feeding them to geckos. The nutrients are passed through the crickets to the gecko.

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    Give your gecko vitamin supplements if you think he isn't getting enough nutrients. Some owners do this even if their gecko is eating a nutritious diet, to ensure good health. These supplements are sold at most pet stores. There are a variety to choose from. Vitamin drops can be put into the gecko's water, or vitamin powder brushed on the gecko's food.

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    Provide fresh water every day or two, and clean the water container. Keeping the tank clean, the water fresh, and other furnishings clean, prevents the spread and growth of common bacteria and parasites found in many geckos' living environments. Parasites, such as pin worms, come from infected insects. If you think your gecko has a parasite problem, talk to a veterinarian.

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    Place a hiding area in the tank. Geckos are nocturnal creatures--mostly active at night. They enjoy having a place to hide during daytime hours. Caves, logs and other hiding areas are sold at pet stores, along with other tank furnishings.

Tips and warnings

  • Geckos shed their skin every few weeks. To aid in this process, some pet owners spray the tank with a bottle of water until lightly moistened to help the skin loosen.
  • Do not use a heat rock to warm the gecko's tank. Geckos may not realise the rock is hot and try to lay on it, causing burns.
  • Ensure all tank furnishings are properly secure so none fall on your gecko and hurt him.
  • Never place two male geckos in one tank--they may fight.

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