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Leopard geckos can make great pets due to their docile nature. Additionally, caring for Leos is not as difficult, thus making them an excellent option for those who are looking to keep lizards for the first time.
Still, there are things that you must learn in order to provide your Leopard gecko with optimal care.
If you notice that your Leo is exhibiting a new behavior, you should try finding out what could be the cause.
In most cases, there is nothing to worry about since the behaviors displayed are completely normal.
However, there are scenarios in which certain actions must be taken to counteract the thing that may be causing distress to your pet lizard.
As a gecko parent, you should always be ready to observe and learn since this will simplify your work when caring for your Leopard gecko.
In addition to this, you should be willing to research anything that you don’t understand about Leopard geckos. And the fact that you are here reading this piece means you are on the right track.
Understanding Leopard Geckos: Why Are My Leopard Gecko's Eyes Closed?
Unlike most lizards, Leopard geckos have fully functional eyelids, meaning they can blink and close their eyes whenever they want.
Moreover, their genus name, Eublepharis, comes about due to the fact that they have eyelids. As such, you shouldn’t be surprised if you notice spot your Leopard gecko closing its eyes.
Nonetheless, there are times when Leos may close their eyes for longer durations, and this has caused many gecko parents to worry about their pets. And this brings us to the below question:
Why Are My Leopard Gecko's Eyes Closed?
Leopard geckos can keep their eyes closed due to three main reasons. It could be that the lighting condition is not favorable, they are sleeping, or they have an eye infection. This may vary from one Leopard gecko to another, so you should consider taking your lizard to the vet if you are not sure what could be causing the problem.
To elaborate, let us discuss the reasons one by one:
Unfavorable Lighting Conditions
One of the main reasons why Leopard geckos close their eyes is because the lighting condition in their environment is unfavorable.
When the lights are too bright in the Leopard gecko’s enclosure, the lizard may be forced to close its eyes. Too much light can cause discomfort and distress to Leopard geckos.
Besides, Leos have sensitive eyes that can easily be affected by poor lighting conditions. You can keep your Leopard gecko comfortable by placing hideouts inside the enclosure.
That way, the lizard can seek refuge in low-light conditions in case they get uncomfortable.
Here are other ways through which you can control the lighting conditions in your lizard’s enclosure:
1. Move the Leopard Gecko Enclosure Away From Windows
This particularly applies when keeping albino morphs. Albino Leopard geckos have reduced melanin in their bodies and are also highly sensitive to light.
Lizards with this trait take a longer time to adapt to the lighting conditions in their environment, so they may keep their eyes closed throughout the day.
Albino leopard geckos can be affected by both artificial and natural light, so ensure that the enclosure has the right lighting at all times.
2. Use Heat Mats Instead of Heat Lamps
Heat lamps are essential for Leopard geckos that are in captivity since they allow you to mimic the day-night cycle inside the gecko’s enclosure.
Nevertheless, some heat lamps may be too bright for Leopard geckos and this may prompt them to close their eyes.
Your Leopard Gecko Could Be Sleeping
Like humans and other species in the animal kingdom, Leopard geckos sleep with both eyes closed.
Leos mostly sleep at night, but they can also take naps during the day. If you notice that your Leopard gecko is spending most of its time with both eyes shut, it could be that they are just sleeping.
You can easily determine if your Leo is sleeping by tapping them lightly. A sleeping gecko will open its eyes almost immediately.
However, if the lizard fails to wake up, there could be a problem. You should exercise caution when tapping the lizard since it can easily get spooked.
Eye infections are common in Leopard geckos and other members of the lizard family. In most cases, infections only affect one eye, but there are scenarios where both eyes are affected.
If the latter applies, your Leopard gecko may close its eyes. Leopard geckos can suffer from fungal, viral, and bacterial eye infections.
Infections can cause abscesses and other complications in the gecko’s eyes. This will, in turn, force the little guy to close one or both eyes.
One of the more common eye infections is commonly referred to as cloudy eye.
If left untreated, cloudy eye can cause serious damage to the cornea and other parts of the eye.
However, there are antibiotics that can treat eye infections. Here’s our top recommendations:
Why Do Leopard Geckos Lick Their Eyes
Eye licking is a normal behavior in Leopard geckos since it helps clean their eyes. That being said, your gecko may lick its eyes when removing foreign debris.
Additionally, Leos can also lick their eyes to keep them moist. Dry eyes can cause discomfort, so your lizard may lick its eyeballs from time to time, especially when the enclosure has low humidity.
Do Leopard Geckos Need Lights at Night?
Leopard geckos don’t need any light at night. In fact, lights can confuse your gecko at night, so you should consider turning them off.
Besides, Leos are guided by the day-night cycle, meaning any sudden change in the lighting pattern can cause distress.
Final Thoughts – Why Leopard Geckos Close Their Eyes
If you have been wondering why your Leopard gecko is closing its eyes, we hope that this article has answered all your questions.
Leos have sensitive eyes, so they can easily be affected by bright light. Albino Leopard geckos are the most affected because they have reduced melanin in their eyes.
You can minimize the light in your Leopard gecko’s vivarium by moving the enclosure away from the windows. You can as well use heat mats rather than heat lamps.