Reptile Maniac

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do leopard geckos like to be held

Leopard geckos are cold-blooded, meaning they need external heat sources to regulate their body temperature. Humans, on the other hand, are warm-blooded, making it easy for us to adapt to changing ambient temperatures. And as humans, we all love a warm hug every now and then?

But does the same apply to our geckos? Do leopard geckos like to be held?

Leopard geckos like to be held as it helps them regulate their body temperature. Geckos draw heat from humans and other sources, and will likely nestle to absorb as much warmth as possible. However, not all leopard geckos fancy being held, especially if they’re not used to you yet. Give your gecko time to trust you, and handling them will soon be an enjoyable experience for both of you.

Now that it’s clear your geckos could like handling, you need info to make their snuggling time worthwhile. Holding a stressed gecko could lead it to experience massive health problems.

That’s why this post finds out answers to the following questions. For how long should you hold your gecko? How should you hold it? Does your gecko feel comfortable with handling? Let’s dive right in!

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When is the Best Time to Hold Your Leopard Gecko?

There sure is a right time to pick up your gecko. You can start doing this as soon as it has passed the hatchling stage.

Geckos are relatively fragile at that stage and you don’t want to squash them by accident. It is usually best to let your gecko grow bigger and stronger for about four months before attempting to pick them up.

If holding a hatching is inevitable, handle it with extreme care. Whether a leopard gecko wants you to hold it or not greatly depends on its mood. Observe your gecko closely to see whether it is stressed out or not. Avoid picking up your gecko when it is stressed, let the little guy have its alone time.

Another point to note is, leopard geckos are usually very active at night. This means, trying to hang out with your spotted pal during the day may not be a very good idea. Nighttime, probably before you go to bed is preferable.

For How Long Should You Hold Your Leopard Gecko?

Leopard geckos are cold-blooded reptiles, meaning they rely on heat from their environment to keep warm. Cold-blooded animals cannot generate any body heat and need several sources of warmth to survive. Geckos in need of warmth will love you to hold them more often.

While spending time with your gecko, check their stomach every 10 minutes to confirm their body temperature. If their stomach is warm to the touch, you can keep playing, if not, return your gecko to its tank to keep warm.

What Can You Do If Your Gecko Doesn’t Want to Be Held?

A simple reason for this could be that the reptile isn’t used to its new environment. Another common reason your leopard gecko doesn’t like to be held is because you purchased from a breeder that didn’t handle them regularly.

To put your leopard gecko at ease, you need to earn its trust.


There are a few ways to earn your geckos trust; one way is to talk to your gecko. Yes, you read that right. Leopard geckos have the ability to recognize sounds. Talking to your gecko often will let it recognize your voice and feel safe around you.

Getting used to your scent

They also possess a keen sense of smell. Leave stuff you use often around their tank or in the room where your gecko likes to be often. It will get geckos used to your smell, letting them recognize you easily. The good thing about gaining recognition is, once they get used to you, they stopped feeling threatened. They will let you get closer to them and hold them more often.


Another way to earn the trust of your leopard gecko is by feeding. We all love that friend who brings food. Your gecko pal does too.

Hand feeding your leopard gecko is a great way to foster good relationship between you and your leopard gecko. Cockroaches, crickets, mealworms and a host of other insects in its diet will make your gecko love you.


Do leopard geckos like to cuddle?

Unlike some reptiles, leopard geckos are open to close interaction with their handlers. Leopard geckos will like to cuddle on their owner’s hands to draw much-needed body heat and regulate their temperature.

Do leopard geckos bond with their owners?

Leopard geckos are more likely to bond with their owners when showered with ample care. Apart from offering your reptiles regular meals, you can bond by taking them on a walk. You can also bond with your leopard gecko easily if it has everything in its tank to feel comfortable.

Do leopard geckos need attention?

Leopard geckos are largely docile in nature and don’t require 100% attention like some other pets. Owners of leopard geckos can leave their reptiles for days at a time. Geckos are also easy to maintain and don’t give off any offensive odor if left alone for long periods.

How do I know if my leopard gecko is happy?

Final Thoughts: Do Leopard Geckos Like To Be Held?

Do leopard geckos like to be held? Yes, they do and gain a lot from letting you hold them.

Reptiles are cold-blooded and need much support from external heat sources to regulate their temperature. Leopard geckos will benefit much from letting you handle them from time to time. However, if you notice your leopard gecko looks stressed after handling, it’s better to assess it its healthy.

Consult a vet if it becomes clear your leopard gecko refuses the opportunity to nestle in your hands. They usually love to let you hold them if everything’s fine.