Reptile Maniac

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how to get stuck shed off leopard gecko toes

Leopard geckos and other reptiles periodically shed their skin as they grow. This process is called ecdysis, and it occurs naturally throughout different stages of development.

However, leopard geckos may at times have a problem during the shedding process. As such, the old skin may fail to come off on certain parts of the body. Stuck shed mainly occurs in the leopard gecko’s toes, face, and tail.

If your leopard gecko has stuck shed on its toes, this article is going to walk you through how to get stuck shed off a leopard geckos toes. Keep reading to learn how to remove stuck shed before your leopard gecko loses its toes!

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What Causes Stuck Shed in Leopard Geckos

Shedding problem is common in pet leopard geckos. It comes about due to a wide range of factors that can be controlled.

Poor Diet

Like humans, leopard geckos require a specific diet to stay healthy. Since they are insectivores, they thrive on an insect-rich diet. Leopard geckos love eating mealworms, cockroaches, crickets, butterworms, etc.

Feeding your leopard gecko the wrong food may affect their health in various ways. Vitamin A deficiency is associated with the shedding problem in leopard geckos. Providing your leos with vitamin supplements can help prevent the shedding problem.

You can consider dusting the insects with powder supplements before feeding them to your leopard gecko.

Low Humidity

Leopard geckos originate from arid regions. However, they still need moisture to perform certain functions in their bodies. An environment with low humidity may hinder the shedding process in leopard geckos.

The humidity levels inside a leopard gecko’s enclosure should be at 40% to encourage shedding. Anything below 30% will cause the leo’s skin to dry out, resulting in stuck shed. Misting your leopard gecko and the enclosure can increase the humidity levels.

Removing Stuck Shed From A leopard Gecko’s Toes

If you notice that your leopard gecko has stuck shed on its toes, you can help them remove it. Stuck shed may seem harmless at first but it can cause serious problems in leopard geckos.

A retained shed can cut off blood circulation to the affected toe. This can result in the loss of toes and toenails.

To remove stuck shed from your leopard geckos toes, you will need the following items;

Note: The Tupperware container should be large enough for the leopard gecko. As such, the size may vary depending on how large or small your leopard gecko is.


Step 1: Place a paper towel inside the Tupperware container.

Step 2: Wet the paper towel with lukewarm water. Ensure that you don’t apply too much water to prevent your leo from drowning.

Step 3: Place your leopard gecko on the wet paper towels and hold them in place. Let the leopard gecko’s toes soak for 15 to 20 minutes.

Step 4: Remove the leopard gecko from the container. Gently brush the stuck shed using a cotton swab. You can repeat this process several times until all the stuck shed comes off.

Final Verdict

The best way to prevent the shedding problem in leopard geckos is by providing proper husbandry.

You can start by feeding your leo a healthy diet, misting the enclosure, and keeping the temperature at optimal levels. Also, stuck shed should be removed early enough before it causes other problems.