Generally these reptiles are healthy creatures but Leopard gecko problems can occur and when they do, you need to know how to recognise them and what to do. Leopard gecko problems often result in the animal not eating so be vigilant and be sure to make further checks if your pet starts refusing food.
Here are some of the commonest Leopard gecko problems and how to recognise them:
Impaction is a blockage in the digestive tract and left untreated, can result in the death of the reptile. Symptoms include constipation, vomiting, loss of appetite, visible lumps in the stomach or even paralysis. These types of Leopard gecko problems are often caused by them swallowing the loose substrate on which they are housed. Other causes can be feeding them insects which are too large i.e. wider than their own head or insects with a very hard shell which can get stuck in the digestive tract. Dehydration and low temperatures can also cause Leopard gecko problems.
You should really take your reptile to a vet if you suspect that it is suffering from impaction but you can also use kitchen paper in place of substrate, regularise the temperature in the tank and ensure that your pet has plenty of fresh water to drink and a regular and appropriate feeding schedule.
Calcium deficiency is another one of the common Leopard Gecko problems and can lead to the reptile trying to eat the substrate in its tank because this often contains calcium. However, as stated above, substrate is not digestible and can lead to impaction so do provide your pet with a bowl of calcium which is always available so it won’t be tempted to eat the substrate. Ensure that your Leopard gecko has an appropriate diet which will prevent calcium deficiency. Symptoms include shivering and weakness and ultimately swelling of the legs.
Infection of the mouth or respiratory system can occur if the atmosphere in your gecko’s tank is too humid or not cleaned out often enough or their diet is not correctly balanced. Symptoms include panting, nasal discharge, bleeding gums or dribbling. Antibiotics can cure both Leopard gecko problems but correct feeding and environment can prevent them.
In general, Leopard gecko problems can be prevented by ensuring that their enclosure is kept clean and at the correct temperature and humidity and lined with kitchen paper, tile or slate substrate or reptile carpet. Make sure that there is always fresh (changed daily) water available to your pet and that their diet is well balanced without too much fat which can result in cholesterol forming in the organs and abdomen.