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Become a Crested Gecko dehydration expert. Learn symptoms of Crested Gecko dehydration, and what you can do to prevent and even treat a dehydrated gecko. Constant access to water, adequate misting, and an aware owner can all prevent dehydration. Read more for signs to watch for, in addition to what to do if you notice that your gecko is dehydrated.
Water. That simple, tasteless, clear liquid that’s essential for the life of all creatures on the planet. Humans can not live without it, and neither can Crested Geckos.
Crested Geckos are pretty hardy animals that rarely get sick. So, if they are well taken care of it’s actually possible for them to live up to 15-20 years in captivity. They are considered pretty easy-to-care-for, low-maintenance pets.
All that being said, they do have basic needs that need to be met. Most health issues seen in these creatures are directly linked to improper care. Crested Geckos that are kept as pets can become dehydrated, which can be extremely harmful and possibly even deadly if left untreated.
What is Dehydration?
When a gecko is dehydrated, that means its body is losing more fluids than it is taking in. Because of this, the gecko’s body is not able to perform normal functions. At this point, the gecko may become very sick. Dehydration must be reversed quickly by replacing fluids that have been lost, to re-establish the vital balance of liquids in = liquids out.
Signs Of Dehydration In Crested Geckos
Causes of Dehydration
There are multiple things that can cause dehydration in Crested Geckos. For example, if the owner of the gecko fails to provide a good water source, the pet will not receive the necessary amount of water it needs to thrive. If the temperature in the gecko’s habitat is too hot, the animal will begin to lose too much water. Inadequate misting of the enclosure leads to a less humid home, which causes a gecko to become dehydrated.
Luckily, providing good care to a pet gecko is not difficult. However, it’s always a good idea to learn your Crested Gecko’s needs and come up with a regular schedule for feeding, watering, and misting them.
Treatment of Dehydration
There are different severities of dehydration; mild, moderate, and severe. If you find that your gecko is suffering from dehydration, taking it to an exotic animal vet quickly is the best option to save your pet.
Mild dehydration is not healthy for your gecko, although it is not to the point of being deadly. At this stage, dehydration is relatively easily reversed. If provided with plenty of water to drink, adequate misting, and possibly water to soak in, your gecko should recover on its own.
To treat moderate dehydration, you can provide your Crested Gecko with long soaks in lukewarm water. They will absorb the water into their skin, replacing necessary amounts of fluids. It may also be necessary to provide your reptile with extra fluids. Talk to your vet, and follow their directions to help your gecko recover.
If your gecko has become severely dehydrated, it is extremely important that they see a vet. They may be treated with I.V. fluids, to help them survive the situation.
Similarly, adjusting your gecko’s diet is a great way to get more liquid into their body. If you do not use a prepared diet, it may be a good idea to switch to one. Gecko food by Pangea is the product we use for our crested geckos and not only is it extremely nutritious, but they seem to love the taste! If you do use a prepared diet, consider adding more water to the powder mixture.
Finding a Vet
Sometimes, taking your animal to a vet is necessary for its survival. Because of this, it’s always best to know what vet you plan to take your pet to before they come sick. Their life may depend on it. So if you have a pet, do some research and find a quality vet in your area, just in case it needs a visit.
Most vets know how to treat “normal” pets, like cats and dogs. But not all know how to, or are experienced in treating Crested Geckos. So, if you are having a hard time finding a vet in your area, there are certain places you can turn to.
As a Crested Gecko owner, it is your job to consistently be checking your gecko’s enclosure and provide proper care. Make sure your pet has access to water and is actually drinking from whatever water source they have. Similarly, just like humans, a gecko’s environment affects them greatly. Here are some habitat requirements that keep your Crested Gecko happy and healthy.
To have a happy, healthy Crested gecko, keep their enclosure around 75 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit during the day. At night, it is okay for the temperature in the cage to drop closer to 70 degrees. Use a thermometer to monitor this.
For the health and safety of your pet, water should constantly be available. Some Crested Geckos prefer to drink from a shallow dish, while others prefer drinking while the cage is being misted.
Misting can be done in 2 different ways. Some gecko owners mist manually. However, others choose to use an automated misting system. Either way, humidity in the habitat should be in the 50%-70% range. For some, that means misting should be done 2 times per day for a minimum of 30 seconds, but for others, it may be every other day. Carefully watch over your pet and do what is best for them and their needs.
Type B Ultraviolet light comes from the sun, and is crucial for Crested Geckos. If your gecko is already exposed to natural sunlight, great! It is getting these nutrients already. If not, you can use a light, or special light bulb to ensure your gecko is getting enough UVB. Lights should be turned on and off to match the cycle of the sun. On during the day, off at night.
Doing the following things can prevent your gecko from becoming dehydrated.
As an owner of a Crested Gecko, your pet needs you. Above all, it is your job to provide adequate food, water, lighting, and heat to your pet. If you fail to do so, your gecko will begin to show it. In other words, they will fail to thrive. Their immune system and digestive system will become weak. Their bone development and their overall growth will diminish. They will become sick, and if left too long without their daily needs, they may die.
In conclusion, these ailments can easily be prevented with adequate care. But most importantly, don’t let your gecko become dehydrated. Provide them with fresh clean water daily. Mist their habitat and keep humidity levels in a safe range. Likewise, pay attention to what your Crested Gecko is feeling, and provide them with all they need to live a long, happy life.