Helo! My Gecko is ill

port gecko

New Member
nova scotia
Hello - my leopard gecko is getting increasingly sick. He has lost weight and is not eating. I try to hand feed him but even this is becoming difficult. I will post the general info below. THANK YOU for your help!

About your leo
- Sex - male?
- Age & Weight - 6 months old - unsure of weight but has lost weight
- How long have you owned your leo - 6 months
- Where was he/she obtained (ex. Pet store, breeder, wild caught, friend) - pet store

A) Health/History
- How often do you handle your leo - daily
- Is your leo acting any different today? If so how does he/she normally act which differs from now. - has been eating less for a couple of months but getting worse
- Has he/she had any problems in the past, if so please describe.
Gary is his name. When we first got him he had a heatlhy appetite and we fed him a mixture of crickets and meal worms. He used to eat 4-5 per day. About 2-3 months ago he started eating less. Crickets were in his aquarium but he would not eat them. He would eat an occasional meal worm but less so than before. He shed for the first time shortly after this and we thought it was maybe the cause (and the fact the weather is cooling - maybe a seasonal affect?) He has not regained his appetitie. We asked at the pet store several times and they did not suggest anything. We noticed some changes in his walking and I believe he has poor calcium intake. We immediately went and got calcium supplement. I'm aware we can't improve his mobility but thought we could prevent it from being worse. We were very upset as we were never told at the store to ensure he got calcium and I suspect without the crickets he did not have enough. We have been trying to hand feed him some crushed worms as well as sweet potato with calcium. He was taking some but this has decreased. His tail is smaller now and he is very lethargic. He does not really even want to eat when hand fed (used to lick the mixture)

B) Fecals
- Describe (look any different than normal) - looks the same
- When was the last time he/she went - seems to have within the past week
C) Problem
- Please briefly describe the problem and how long it has been going on - please see note above. Our challenge now is that he won't intake enough food. I don't know how to remedy this and I'm worried he may eventually starve to death. He has lost a lot of weight. As an aside he has shed his skin 4 times since last November. I'm not sure this is normal.

A) Enclosure
- Size - aquarium - intro size
- Type (ex. glass tank) - glass
- Type of substrate - green "astroturf" carpet
- Hides, how many, what kind - 1 clay - although we did put another in for a period. Also has artificial leaves/plants
B) Heating
- Heat source- heating mat - have a cool side and a warm side
- Cage temps (hot side, cool side) - hot side and cool side
- Method of regulating heat source - heat mat
- What are you using to measure your temps - thermometer
- Do you have any lights (describe) - we did have a light but aren't using it right now...we were told it may not be necessary
C) Cage mates
- How many (males, females)- 1 only
- Describe health, or previous problems

Describe Diet:
A) Typical diet
- What you're feeding (how often, how much) - see above
- How are you feeding (hand fed, left in dish, ect) - trying to hand feed now...but this is not working well
B) Supplements (describe how often)
- What vitamin/minerals are you using (list brands)- have started using a calcium supplement.
- What are you gut loading food with

Thanks so much for your help



Staff member
Somerville, MA
Welcome to GF! Sorry about your sick leo. Leopard geckos need calcium and vitamin D3. The calcium builds strong bones and the D3 allows them to metabolize the calcium. Make sure your calcium has vitamin D3 as well, or it will not do him any good. If a leopard gecko doesn't get calcium, eventually its bones will get soft and rubbery. You can often notice that the legs seem rubbery and it has trouble holding itself up. What isn't so obvious is that the jaw gets soft too and it's hard for the gecko to bite and chew its food.
Here's what I suggest you do now:
--if at all possible, find a reptile vet who may be able to give it a calcium shot to get things going in a more concentrated way
--make sure your calcium has vitamin D3. Dip your finger in some water, then dip it into the supplement and rub it on the gecko's nose. The gecko will lick it off and get the calcium
--you could try mashing up some worms or crickets and see if the gecko will take them that way.

Good luck, with it.